Activated Charcoal... For Teeth Whitening?

I spotted this blog post on Coconut Mama about a more natural method for teeth whitening. What really caught my eye is that it uses Activated Charcoal to do so.


"Open one capsule of activated charcoal into a small bowl. Wet your tooth-brush and dip it into the charcoal. Gently brush teeth with charcoal. Swish the charcoal around in your mouth for a few minutes after brushing. Rinse out your mouth and brush with your teeth with your normal tooth paste. Do this as often as you like."


I know activated charcoal is great, but I've never considered it for this use before. What are your thoughts on this? Think there could possibly be some damaging side effects?


  • I too read this on another blog but rather than brushing with it, it mentioned to just open a few capsules into the mouth with some water and swirl it around your mouth for 4-5 minutes. I've tried it a few times and have noticed a slight change in colour, very slight but can't be doing any harm so why not try it anyway!

  • StevoStevo Upgrade in Progress

    I tried it once. Your mouth will be completely black! But don't worry, it will rinse right out. :-D

  • RodRod The Rodfather

    It will be far less abrasive than commercial tooth pastes. Carbon is relatively soft. I honestly don't see it whitening teeth any better than baking soda or hydrogen peroxide though.


    The Greco-Roman empire would gargle/mouthwash with boiled pig urine to whiten teeth.


    The real question is, are whiter teeth better than other teeth? no.


    Would that be food grade hydrogen peroxide? I thought I remember reading about commercial hydrogen peroxide having preservatives etc...

  • Jason MillerJason Miller Mother nature isn't stupid mod
    Yes, sometimes it's sold as food grade 35%, you have to dilute it to 3%, never get it on your hands in the pure form (personal account).
  • RodRod The Rodfather

    I don't mean any specific manufacturing. Hydrogen peroxide does a damn good job at whitening teeth though. If you do get a high rade, dilute it with a good deal of water if you are going to use it as a mouth rinse. Also be prepared to have your tongue feel weird for a minute or so (even if you rinse with water after) yous till get little bubbles that just feel funny. I use peroxide anytime I get a canker sore (once or twice a year) to help keep it from getting any nasties in it making it worse. I've never drank juices or coffee or very much soda though and don't eat berries, for that matter haven't been to the dentist in over a decade... have never had a cavity and regularly have a few dentists I know constantly insist that I must have had work done, one even went as far as to call me a liar and ask to inspect my mouth becuase he swore I had veneers heh so I can't comment on frequent use of peroxide as a mouth rinse I would suspect it's several magnitudes more effective than activated charcoal though.


    I guess I'm trying to ask if you know if there is a difference between the types etc..

  • RodRod The Rodfather

    Yes, the 3% stuff in the brown bottle at the grocery/dollar store isn't ideal for oral use it will contain preservatives (sometimes even heavy metals), food grade (usually 35%) is what you want. It is very caustic though so be careful using it, just dilute 1 ounce with 11 ounces of water to get about 3% which is safe for oral use.



    For an example of what you are looking for




    Thank you for confirming! 

  • edited November 2013
    Carbon is relatively soft. I honestly don't see it whitening teeth any better than baking soda or hydrogen peroxide though. Teeth whitening has some obvious advantages over other techniques like porcelain veneers or tooth bonding.
  • pmrtnzpmrtnz Peter Martinez

    Sure does. Dave actually mentioned this on the last Q&A podcast & I believe it's mentioned on Bulletproof. 

  • I tried using it to brush after hearing him mention on the last Q&A... and it turned my whole mouth black... and even got between my gums and teeth.


    I used it with my Oral B electric brush.  I have to say that I didn't notice any increased whitening with it....  took a lot of water swishing to get all the blackness out.

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