The use of using carbon as a dental cleaning method is nothing new. In fact, its beginnings are from the time of the Romans. They lacked tools or resources and brushed with coal to take care of their dental health.
Other sources point out that it was used in Greece to hide stains on teeth and bad breath from gingivitis. The first appearance of coal in dentistry was in a homemade recipe from the 19th century.
Lately, its use has taken popularity, because its texture is similar to bicarbonate.
People include these products as an alternative to brush their teeth, but dentists have been warned about the risks of using activated carbon toothpaste.
Why Are There Risks of Using Activated Carbon Toothpaste?
If this product is compared to normal paste, its benefits are poor, says Joseph Greenwall-Cohen, a professor at the School of Dentistry at the University of Manchester in the United Kingdom. The specialist participated in a study on the risks of using activated carbon toothpaste.
Greenwall-Cohen, together with another group of dentists, published an article in the British Dental Journal in which they warn that it does not favor tooth enamel. There are risks such as the appearance of caries.
According to scientists, there is no evidence that charcoal provides beneficial effects on oral health. On the contrary, they detected that it is abrasive to enamel!
In this study they analyzed 50 pastes of activated carbon and only 8% contained fluoride. Although fluoride can be toxic, at the correct doses it generates several benefits for patients. Some of its advantages are in making tooth enamel stronger, which is why it is so important that it is present in the dentifrices in the indicated amount.
There Are More Risks than Benefits
Dental professionals who have done studies on pastes with charcoal recommend abandoning this practice, because it can cause irreparable damage.
They suggest that you continue using a dentifrice that contains fluoride and go to the dentist on a regular basis. It has been proven in studies that those communities that have had greater contact with water with fluoride are less likely to suffer from cavities.
There are celebrities who have echoed this product and this has popularized using it in the general population. But dentists reject it because they do not fulfill their promotional arguments: “antibacterials,” “antifungals,” or “bleaches.”
The benefits that claim to have activated charcoal pastes have not been proven so far. Although they offer a “fast teeth whitening” it is far from being true.
These products are ineffective and only bring risks, such as gum irritation.
Why is Charcoal so Harmful?
Materials such as nutshells, coconut, bamboo, peat, wood and coal, are what integrate this new fashion of teeth whitening.
The continued use of carbon pastes is harmful. This material is used to purify water and absorb substances from the body in case of poisoning.
Active carbon pastes do not have the validation or disapproval of the American Dental Association.
Constipation, dark stools, blockage of the intestinal tract and dehydration are some of the side effects of this practice, says the National Library of Medicine of the United States. Even, the Organization of Consumers and Users has warned of the risks of these superficial changes.
Patients who have certain types of fillings are at risk of more severe damage because it is difficult to get rid of some charcoal particles. Active carbon is as abrasive as the use of bicarbonate for teeth.