Activated Charcoal and other Natural Teeth Care trends - What works?
The “natural teeth care" movement is growing - especially among millennials and celebrities. There’s lots of new information for us to absorb and dozens of new products hitting the market, such as;
- Activated Charcoal Toothpaste: said to be an effective solution to removing surface stains on teeth.
- Coconut Oil Pulling: Used to clean bacteria from the mouth in the hopes of alleviating bad breathe and slowing tooth decay.
- Natural Whitening Solutions: claim to whiten teeth without “chemical” agents. These range from vinegar, lemon juice and baking soda.
Let’s start with what can be effective.
Charcoal toothpaste may be effective against fighting surface stains. However, it will likely not be effective on deeper stains and should not replace a fluoride toothpaste. There is also no conclusive evidence it works any better than a standard whitening toothpaste. Oil pulling can also boast some scientifically proven benefits for dealing with bacteria in the mouth, but again, it is not going to remove stains and should NOT be considered a replacement for brushing and flossing.
Now what doesn’t work.
Natural Teeth Whitening seems to be a bust. Be especially wary of therapies that call for lemon juice, apple cider vinegar or other acidic substances to be put on teeth - the acid can wear down enamel and over time can actually damage your teeth. We still recommend professional whitening solutions - like our Philips ZOOM line of products. It's the best way to truly whiten teeth.
If any of the new dental trends have caught your attention remember to consult a professional before you proceed. While some unconventional products can be beneficial none of them should replace a regular dental hygiene plan that includes using a fluoride toothpaste, flossing and regular trips to your dentist for a cleaning and checkup.