Activated charcoal has recently become a popular trend for DIY teeth whitening, but medical professionals are warning against smearing the charcoal-derived black mixture on teeth.
Fox News reported that YouTube user Mama Natural posted a video detailing how to use activated charcoal to whiten teeth, and by Monday morning the video had amassed more than 1.5 million views.
But dentists are concerned about using this method for teeth whitening, saying it could lead to tooth erosion and enamel deterioration.
The online video shows host Genevieve brushing her teeth with the supplement for three to five minutes before rinsing, then stating she has seemingly whiter teeth. The advertisement advises that the product can be purchased in capsule form online or in health food stores.
Genevieve says in the video that charcoal is highly absorbent, referring to it as “some of the most absorbent material on the planet.” She claims that hospitals have a supply of charcoal on hand to absorb poison from a person’s body.
“The same reasoning works for our teeth. It absorbs bacteria, toxins, and staining, and makes them whiter as a result.”
Dentists say that, while the cosmetic result of this cleaning method may hold true for some people, the long-term internal effect may harm other people’s teeth. Charcoal teeth-whitening products have not been evaluated or approved by the American Dental Association, and a spokesperson for the organization said this product is concerning because its abrasiveness isn’t known.
Dr. Susan Maples is a Michigan based dentist and author of Blabber Mouth: 77 Secrets Only Your Mouth Can Tell You to Live a Healthier, Happier, Sexier Life. She told Fox News that the supplement may be dangerous because there simply isn’t enough evidence available to show if the supplement is beneficial.
“I worry about the long-term effects of a video like this. Teeth are the only part of the ectoderm that does not replenish or…