Goodbye White Strips, Hello Charcoal!
Ever since my son started losing his pearly white little baby teeth he's been plagued with a mouth full of large yellowish chompers. This is frustrating to say the least since he eats very little sugar (compared to the average American kid) and is a consistent brusher. We ask about this at every dentist visit and they tell us it's normal. Adult teeth don't have the nice translucence you see in the baby versions. This still doesn't explain why his are more yellow than most of his friends. When he came home from school recently and told me that another kid had commented on the color of his teeth I decided it was finally time to find a solution.
It didn't take much digging to find an inexpensive, holistic, natural teeth whitener. Activated charcoal has been shown to combat ingested toxins and food poisoning, prevent hangovers, sooth insect bites, lower cholesterol and even battle acne. On top of all that it can also whiten teeth! This is what WebMD has to say:
Common charcoal is made from peat, coal, wood, coconut shell, or petroleum. “Activated charcoal” is similar to common charcoal, but is made especially for use as a medicine. To make activated charcoal, manufacturers heat common charcoal in the presence of a gas that causes the charcoal to develop lots of internal spaces or “pores.” These pores help activated charcoal “trap” chemicals.
It basically soaks up toxins and gases that come in contact with it. Warning: The following process is a bit messy. I would suggest wiping up your sink and counter top as you go to prevent any staining.
What you need: A toothbrush, toothpaste, small ramekin or paper towel, and an activated charcoal capsule. *Be sure it's "activated" so that the charcoal has been modified for medicinal use. I found this brand on sale at my local health food store.
What you do: Open up the capsule and pour the contents into a ramekin or onto a paper towel. Prepare your toothbrush with a bit of toothpaste and then run it through the activated charcoal powder.
Brush your teeth as usual and watch your mouth turn totally black. I was able to convince him to leave it on for about a minute each time. Then rinse and brush with water until your mouth is clean.
Voila! Before and after photos with 5 treatments (once every few days over the course of a week or two)...
The most dramatic results were seen after the very first treatment, but subtle whitening occurred after each subsequent treatment. We were definitely impressed!