Can Activated Charcoal Really Whiten Your Teeth?


Brushing teeth with activated charcoal is the latest at-home whitening craze. It’s billed as a cheaper, all-natural alternative to traditional whitening treatments. But does it actually work?

What Is Activated Charcoal?

Activated charcoal is a form porous carbon. It has a wide range of uses, from medicinal to removing air pollutants. It works by binding to toxins and other substances in order to eliminate them.

Brushing with Activated Charcoal?

People often buy activated charcoal capsules online and use it to brush their teeth to try and attain a whiter smile. Non-activated charcoal is toxic, so if you decide to try this, be sure to double-check what type of charcoal you’re using!

Activated charcoal has no taste, so it’s pretty tolerable to use, but it can stain grout and plastic, so be careful when brushing over these surfaces.


While everyone will have different results, there is no evidence to back up the notion that activated charcoal can whiten teeth. Some dentists are even concerned about brushing with a grainy substance, noting how that could actually unintentionally wear down tooth enamel.

Others are concerned that brushing with activated charcoal will decrease the amount of fluoride that your teeth are exposed to, making them more susceptible to cavities.

Moreover, if you have crowns or bridges, make sure to check with your dentist before you try whitening with activated charcoal, as it may dull the appearance of you teeth.

Other Whitening Options

If you are looking for quick and effective ways to whiten your teeth, you should consider professional in-office whitening treatments, which can lighten your teeth significantly after just one visit.

Remember, having white teeth is just one part of a beautiful smile. At Stroope Orthodontics, we can work with you to develop an orthodontic treatment plan that gets your teeth into their perfect positions. Contact us to set up a consultation today!