How to Whiten Teeth Naturally

how to whiten teeth naturally with charcoal As crazy as it sounds, this one simple home remedy can really whiten teeth (and help with gum disease) and is also very effective against food poisoning and other types of internal toxins.

I used Activated Charcoal a few months ago when I had an awful bout of food poisoning, and it worked wonders! This is actually the substance that many hospitals have on hand and use when patients have ingested toxins or when they pump patients’ stomachs. It is available as a loose powder and in capsule form (see notes below!)

Activated charcoal is a highly absorbent substance. It removes toxins when they adhere to the surface of the charcoal. It is not absorbed by the body, but passes through the GI system, so chemicals and toxins adhere to it, pass through the body and are expelled by the digestive system.

In the 1800s, two men took lethal doses of poisons (including arsenic) and survived without harm… their secret: they mixed the toxins with activated charcoal powder. (Stating the obvious: do not try to repeat these experiments!)

Activated charcoal is extremely effective at pulling toxins from household chemicals, ingested medicines, and other toxins from the body, especially when taken within 30 minutes of ingestion. For this reason, it is a great first treatment for any kind of poisoning, but should not be taken within several hours of medications (or even vitamins) that DO need to be absorbed.

There is even some evidence that activated charcoal is helpful both before and after alcohol consumption to lessen the amount that is absorbed by the body.

Even mainstream medical sites are on board with the benefits of using activated charcoal for a poison remedy.

Should you ever need to use activated charcoal on yourself of a child for poisoning, use as soon as possible and call a poison control center or go to the emergency room as well to make sure the poison has been fully removed!

I’ve personally used activated charcoal for food poisoning and it worked… I mixed 1-2 tablespoons of activated charcoal with water and drank quickly. The food poisoning went away within a couple of hours.  Charcoal should not be taken regularly, as it can cause constipation and block mineral absorption if it is not needed. Also, it can’t be mixed with dairy products or many foods, as they lower its effectiveness. This dose can be repeated up to 3 times a day until symptoms of food poisoning or other poison are gone.

Important note: If you have to take charcoal, make sure to drink a lot of water as it can cause dehydration if taken in large doses!

Activated charcoal is also effective externally as a poultice on spider and insect bites. I tried this when my son was bitten by a brown recluse, and alternating poultices of activated charcoal, baking soda, and powdered plantain completely reversed the bite and he doesn’t even have a scar now.

Activated charcoal is also the stuff used in gas masks and water filters to remove toxins (Here is my favorite water filter).

But what does that have to do with teeth?

So, it’s all well and good that activated charcoal is an effective poison remedy… but you might be wondering why I brushed my teeth with it…

First, please excuse my weird smile in those pictures and the bad lighting in my bathroom… I was  trying to show all of my teeth (I don’t usually smile like that! simple smile ).

The times that I’d recommended charcoal for use in food poisoning or other digestive issues, I always cautioned people to mix with water and swallow quickly so that it wouldn’t stain their teeth. Then, a holistic dentist I know mentioned that it is very effective at whitening teeth… huh?

Since the powder stains everything, I had always worried that it would do the same to my teeth (one of my kids dumped it in the kitchen one time and it does stain tile, grout, clothes and shoes… just a note).

I did some research and found out that even though it temporarily makes the mouth look extremely black (see picture above!) it has the same effect as it does when ingested: it pulls toxins from the mouth and removes stains. (Fair warning: when you open your mouth, it is completely black and rather scary looking! Right after I did this the first time I was intensely worried that it would stain my teeth!)

To my surprise, all of the black washes away and it makes your teeth feel extremely clean and smooth. After a few uses, my teeth were noticeably whiter too (you can sort of tell in the picture above… the lighting didn’t do it justice!).

Further research I’ve done on this showed that activated charcoal can actually be helpful in changing the pH and health of the mouth, and as such is effective in preventing cavities and killing the bad bacteria present in tooth decay and gingivitis. For this reason, I now suggest and use it as part of my remineralizing protocol for teeth, along with my remineralizing toothpaste.

How to Use Charcoal on Teeth

Dip a clean, wet toothbrush into the powdered charcoal (or dump a capsule of charcoal on the toothbrush). Lean over the container or charcoal and quickly put the charcoal covered toothbrush in the mouth (this is to protect your sink). Brush in small, gentle circles for 2 minutes, spit carefully and rinse really well. Your mouth will feel amazingly clean…. your sink, not so much! Use as often as needed.

Where to get Activated Charcoal:

Most natural health stores carry activated charcoal in loose powder or capsule form and it is also available online. I keep both the powdered and capsuled forms on hand in case it is needed for poisoning and I use the powdered in a small glass jar for tooth brushing. Make sure that the charcoal is from wood or coconut sources and not petroleum-based.

Update:

After using the activated charcoal for a few months and swishing with diluted regular 3% hydrogen peroxide when I remember (at the recommendation of a dentist) I am really happy with how white my teeth have gotten!

Here’s a recent picture (cropped from a photo at a family wedding so it looks pixellated). Notice the difference?

What do you think? Am I crazy… would you try it for whitening your teeth? Tell me below!

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Reader Comments

    • Although this might sound odd, it’s actually quite true. Charcoal is used to treat stomach pain caused by excess gas, diarrhea, or indigestion.

      • I just wander if the calcium from the teeth binds with charcoal and weakens the enamel. After all calcium does bind with charcoal in other circumstances.
        Anybody knows?

        • My dad is 75 plus without a single tooth ever removed or stained.
          All pure white
          He always said , he used charcoal from his chilhood for brushing teeth
          due to economic reasons.And we were embarassed to hear
          But now i think he was right and we sholud br proud abt that.

          Although it is common in India to brush with charcoal who cannot afford tootpaste.

          • If you look at the ingredients in toothpaste, and research their properties and possible effects to your health, it may be a bit surprising. It’s not a matter of affordability that causes me to make my own toothpaste, it’s strictly for health reasons. No need to add more chemicals to my body than necessary as their are enough pollutants surrounding us already. Can’t wait to try the charcoal.

          • Rubbing a piece of plantain head in charcoal to brush the teeth is a popular practice in Ghana. Not only is it economical but effective as well.

        • It actually does. That’s why you have to brush it very gently with a soft toothbrush (don’t use your fingers! It will just hurt it).
          The first time I tried; Ibrushed gently with a toothbrush that had hard bristles, my teeth did get whiter automatically but after a few seconds later my incisors hurt for a while. Moral of the story: use a soft brush and brush your teeth real gently.

      • It should be. Apart from the fact that you are not going to swallow the charcoal while whitening teeth, activated charcoal is also used to treat bile flow problems (cholestasis) during pregnancy.

        • Andrea, could you please direct me to some links that support that? I had cholestasis of pregnancy with my first baby and it was awful. I was told I will have it with every pregnancy so I am very interested in finding out how I can treat it naturally. Any help is apprecaited. Thanks so much :)

  1. I have used AC for years. After eating out and starting to feel sick I take 2 capsules and it usually stops the start of food poisoning. I also found that it works very well for my IBS and my 2 daughters use it for the same reason. It is always in my medicine cabinet.

      • With using it internally for upset stomach or cleansing, is there a warning against using it if on long term medication, I know many of the clays come with advice against this as it absorbs the medicine.

    • I also am plagued with severe IBS. I currently take Dicyclomine on a regular basis. Sometimes it works but more often does not. Would the charcoal pill form work better? Really sick of missing work all the time and lack of pay.

      • You should try and take probiotics as well. I think it helps a lot. Also, I was dx with IBS in my 20’s…come to find out 20 years later, I am actually celiac. You can have a simple blood test for celiac, it tests for the antibiodies, and then a biopsy is done for confirmation.

        • I agree Probiotics are great and Organic Apple Cider Vinegar works wonders too. I had IBS growing up until age 27. Found out Stress and Anxiety don’t mix with dairy and fried foods. So I cleaned up my diet and got rid of the stress in my life.
          I’m going to try the Charcoal on my teeth and will try taking it when I have an upset stomach.

          • I absolutely love your website! As soon as I get my hands on some activated charcoal I am going to blacken my teeth to health and whiteness! I had IBS along with fibro and some other health issues. I cut out all wheat, I use my homemade Magnesium Oil, I drink water water with some lemon (peeled lemons and water from soaked seaweed pulverized in my Vitamix) and some Apple Cider Vinegar several times a day (this keeps my body alkaline and does wonders for muscle aches and IBS). I also soak chia seeds and blend those with a bit more water and slippery elm powder. Drink it with a wide straw (I drink this everyday). The Chia is loaded with iron, etc….eases IBS symptom, and a plant source of protein which is used often in some hospitals for children who have several problems digesting food. The slippery elm is like a wonder powder! It healed a multitude of ulcers in my stomach and intestines within 2 weeks. I had the scopes done before, so I immediately started taking 1/2 to 1 tsp daily; two weeks later I had a repeat scope and they were amazed that there was absolutely no sign that I had even had ulcers. Of course I let them believe it was their medication they gave me (and I didn’t take) –but I know it was the slippery elm. Slippery Elm can be bought in bulk powder form.

        • Hi,
          I am also in Canada (Toronto) and have asked at a couple of Wal-marts and the sales associate looked at me like I was crazy.
          Which Wal-Mart did you get your’s at?

          • Charlotte,
            I’m in New Brunswick. I found mine on my own because no one seemed to no what I was talking about either. I found the Swiss brand in the supplement section.
            Cheers.

          • I got some yesterday at “the Nutrition House” which is a chain store – $13. May have it near you. Whole foods or any supplement store would have it too.

  2. I have caps on my two front teeth. I am concerned that the charcoal will permanently stain my caps. What do you think?

      • I use AC regularly on my teeth, and it has NEVER stained any of my composites nor my two porcelain crowns.(My crowns are my two top front teeth, so I would see staining if it was there.:)

    • Holland,
      I have a porcelain crown. Before I used AC, I talked with my dentist and he assured me that the crown that I had would not be affected. I suppose it all depends on the type material used.
      I have used AC repeatedly without any staining.
      Cheers.

    • It shouldn’t. If anything, they should absorb it less, so you shouldn’t have any trouble with it. I found out after it stained my kitchen that it only really sticks on porous surfaces like grout and rough tile, and cloth, but comes out of anything smooth… I know one person who has a veneer and has had no trouble though.

        • “How to use on teeth: Dip a clean, wet toothbrush into the powdered charcoal (or dump a capsule of charcoal on the toothbrush). Lean over the container or charcoal and quickly put the charcoal covered toothbrush in the mouth (this is to protect your sink). Brush in small, gentle circles for 2 minutes, spit carefully and rinse really well. Your mouth will feel amazingly clean…. your sink, not so much! Use as often as needed.”

        • Long answer to How to use capsules and Where to Find.
          My sister & her daughter use AC in capsules. She gave me a few but I’m still looking 4 my own bottle (surprised that Rite Aid, Lamb’s Grocery & GNC didn’t carry it).
          You can buy at Fred Meyer in OR. In CA I may try on-line or possibly Whole Foods. Directions: Hold capsule in mouth & chew lightly 2 break capsule open. Keep mouth closed and don’t breathe in too deeply. Let it sit in mouth about 4-5 min, making sure it has a chance 2 sit on both inside & outside of teeth. We swish it alittle but don’t use toothbrush. Spit into toilet & flush ASAP as it will stain sink. Rinse well. (If u breathed in too deeply, clean nose with a Q-Tip, especially the Tip of your nose Inside as it can collect there. Almost forgot results! I used 1 capsule 1 time. Can’t believe the results – absolute pure WHITE and SHINEY. I had seen my sis & her daughters results so knew it worked. Just didn’t expect amazing results. Couldn’t stop looking in magnifying mirror. Awesome that a product works like this. Love it & can’t believe I just became aware of AC (for whitening use) in my 50’s.

          • I’m in cali. Got mine from Walgreen. You can also order online from walgreen.com

      • Thanks for answering that, because that was my question. I was going to call my dentist on Monday to ask him about it.

      • Oh, good! I was just coming to ask this. One of my front teeth got chipped during surgery and I have a veneer.

      • My 9 year old has very bright white patched two front teeth. Her dentist said it is de-calcification and is a more porous surface. She has braces now so she is less self conscious about it, but when they are removed I worry. Her dentist said the only way to fix it is to drill out the front and put veneers over but I don’t feel alright with that option. Would you recommend this AC treatment for her.

          • As a dental hygienist, I can tell you that there are different reasons for “white spots” on the teeth. Mostly, they are caused by demineralization or acid erosion and are frequently seen in ortho patients underneath brackets due to food getting stuck there for long periods. The bacteria eat away at the food and release an acid that breaks down enamel. People who breathe through the mouth, dry out their teeth and make the white spots more visible. Over time, and with the use of fluoride, it can remineralize the enamel. I used to have these spots as well and they are gone, but not from anything I did. Too much fluoride on the teeth during tooth development can lead to fluorosis, which is actually a brown stain. White spots that occur after teeth are fully erupted are normally from acid erosion,

          • Maria – as a dental hygienist you would have been sold The Full Monty on the “benefit” of fluoride to teeth. It is complete nonsense. Fluoridation (systemic absorption) will cause white flecks on the teeth (fluorosis) which are porous and can turn yellow and brown stained. Particularly galling knowing as we do now that fluoride – if it works at all – works topically. I’m quite sure that is because it is a poison and regular brushing regularly poisons the acid producing, cavity causing bacteria you speak of. So – yes – in that sense I suppose it would “work” with regular brushing. But otherwise fluoride is a deadly poison – fed to populations as an industrial waste product (hexafluorosalicic acid) dumped drop by drop with other waste poisons into our drinking water. There are very many indications of fluoride poisoning in the body and “modern diseases” that doctors gloss over as being “something that just developed”. And as far as I am concerned the lunatics have well and truly taken over the asylum in fluoridated areas. I know dental operatives are busy people – but just a small time researching this (Fluoride Action Network is one place to start) may cause you severe “cognitive dissonance” as they say. Although, a word of warning, it probably won’t help your career prospects if you start trying to tell others within your workplace what you have discovered!!

  3. I was introduced to Activated Charcoal the first time my friend and I babysat her little sister. Her dad had left Triaminic open on the table and the little girl drank the whole thing down because she was “still feeling sick.” We tried to get her to vomit with ipecac but she started falling asleep instead. She ended up in the hospital – they gave her charcoal and pumped her stomach! Thankfully she was alright in the end! 

    As an adult I always have it on hand. It’s great for poisoning, food poisoning, or gas. I’ve never tried brushing my teeth with it, though! I have one very stained tooth. I think I’ll do an experiment and see if I can fix it. Thanks for the suggestion!

  4. Too funny. My dog ate a bunch of chocolate and I had to mix AC with water and dump it down her throat. It got all over her. Strangely, her breath seemed much better. Dog is fine of course. Thanks for the great info.

    • yah that’s about the only thing I know about charcoal. We got a christmas present we put under the tree not knowing it was chocolate and when we came back from the movies our springer spaniel had gotten into it and shat all over the floor and was running around like a mad dog. The vet gave it to her and she was fine. crazy mutt!

  5. This is great! I will definitely try it! I was just thinking about how I wanted to get whiter teeth today but I did not want to use white strips or something because of the chemicals in it, plus they are super expensive. 

  6. Since we prefer our own nutrient dense home cooking over any prepared food that can be purchased, we have made a habit of always bringing capsules of activated charcoal with us whenever we travel and the option of home cooked food is not available.  It has stopped many a case of restaurant induced food poisoning.

  7. I agree that charcoal can help whiten, but I’d like to see a real before picture. You can’t see what your teeth looked like BEFORE you started chewing the charcoal to compare the color.

    • You’re right… I didn’t think to take a picture before I started using it at all…. I honestly wasn’t sure it would work, so I didn’t think it would matter. I would love to see some before and afters from anyone else who tries it, and I’m still using it regularly, so I’ll post an updated “after” in a few weeks to see if there is any change between now and then.

      • something you don’t address is how it works (or perhaps doesn’t?) with fillings or caps. i wanted to get my teeth whitened and was told by my dentist that it wouldn’t work on my white fillings (and would in fact make the contrast even more apparent between white teeth and the less white fillings). do you know if the charcoal works on both tooth enamel AND porcelain/synthetic white fillings? would hate to have those be blackened while trying to whiten my teeth!

        your thoughts/insights?

        • I have a bridge across my front teeth where I knocked out one tooth. Since they are artificial and made a certain shade to match your other teeth they will not bleach out like your real teeth. If your fillings are very stained from coffee, wine, etc it should remove that stain but once it gets to that point and your other teeth keep whitening but the fillings don’t it will start to look funny.

        • I sure wouldn’t believe everything your dentist is telling you (if he/she is a mainstream dentist). These are the very dentists who are either clueless or flat out lying when it comes to the real dangers of amalgam fillings (mercury). Go onto YouTube and search “smoking teeth”. You’ll find Dr. Kennedy’s 8 1/2 min. video explaining this. You can also get great info regarding this by watching the documentary “The Beautiful Truth” (available for rent via Netflix or for purchase from Amazon). Mainstream medicine/dentistry many times leads people in the wrong direction—making bad decisions that end up adversely effecting one’s health. People just aren’t connecting the dots.

          • Absolutely Dana,
            Mainstream Doctors/Dentists are the reason we have so many health issues in the first place. I’m not saying that they’re all purposely trying to make us unwell, after all, they’ve all had years of medical training that has programed them to believe and share what the drug companies want them to believe is right for us. Thankfully people are starting to realize the truth and begin turning back to what truly generates health and well being, the natural alternatives that were used in the first place.

            An amazing read for anyone interested in learning more is Elaine Hollingsworth’s book titled ‘Take control of your health and escape the sickness industry”. This can be found at http://www.doctorsaredangerous.com

            I find it truly empowering to be aware of what really is good for our physical and emotional health instead of relying on what conventional medicine tries to dictate.

          • My question/concern is, knowing how effective AC is at removing toxins in the body, is it likely to draw mercury from amalgam fillings whilst using it in your mouth?

          • I second Toni’s question! Can anyone point to research showings that it is safe to use while having mercury fillings intact?

            Thanks!

        • Tooth colored filling are made from a semi porous material. Yes once the filling is placed in the tooth it is filed & smoothed but is not like enamel or porcelain.

          • Regarding if it’s safe for mercury fillings. People keep asking if it pulls out the mercury when you do this, or oil pull. A biological dentist in Austin TX, says, that mercury vapor leaves your mouth 24/7 regardless of what you eat, drink or do. Get them removed by a biological dentist and mercury won’t get into your body.
            BTW, I did this with coconut charcoal nervous about my crown, and white filling and it didn’t stain them or change them in anyway.

    • I have a coworker who introduced me to AC and her teeth are super white. I recently found out through another coworker that my other coworkers’ teeth are really white because she brushes with AC. That encouraged me to start brushing with AC. I am starting today! I hope this helps.

  8. Hi there! I’m a new subscriber and I cannot believe I haven’t come across your site before! This is so helpful.

    I’ve wanted to do something for teeth whitening for a while. I have badly stained teeth from coffee. I can’t wait to try this out!

  9. This is hysterical and I am so trying it.

    Here is what I know about activated charcoal. After my 2nd kiddo was born I had a terrible problem. Let’s just say it was a problem that most teenage boys would be proud to have. I was not. at. all. proud.

    Sigh – true confessions – I was a fart machine. I could not control them, and they STUNK. Like, oh my word, BAD.

    As you can imagine this was rather distressing to me. I tried many things and finally read to try activated charcoal – and the problem was cured instantly. Really. That afternoon.

    So, add that to you list of uses!!

  10. This is awesome.  I had no idea.  I have sensitive teeth so all the strips and other whitening treatments are not an option for me.  Thanks!
    Missy – that is awesome it worked for that, too!

  11. I tried brushing my teeth this morning with the AC. Surprised that the taste is neutral. I used a designated toothbrush now reserved for this purpose since I knew it would stain. I also used the utility sink in the laundry room. It takes a lot of rinsing to remove the charcoal from mouth and teeth. I even brushed my teeth with regular toothpaste to get ride of the tiny particles. I’m excited that this has potential for good gum health. I plan to continue this routine a few times a week and see if the teeth get whiter.

  12. I wonder if this is at all harmful for the enamel.  I have some stains on my teeth, possibly partly from taking antibiotics for extended periods, and would like to try it.  I guess you brush gently so that the abrasiveness won’t hurt the enamel and gums.

    • Yeah, gentle circles, but really, the powder is very fine and not very abrasive at all, from what I understand. It is definitely less abrasive even than baking soda, and that has a very low abrasive rating.

    • There are different types of stains, intrinsic (within and extrinsic (external).  
       Tooth whitening aids work for extrinsic staining. Stains that develop on the outside of the tooth, typically from foods or beverages: i.e. tea, berries, coffee, etc.  

      Intrinsic stains form from inside the tooth and are often caused by certain antibiotics (tetracycline) taken as a young child during critical tooth development or your mother ingested certain types of antibiotics during pregnancy . The tooth could have been injured, too.  Yellowing (from within the tooth) can occur from aging, too.  These types of stains are much harder to reverse and involves micro-abrasion techniques – removing tooth enamel. 

      • Taking supplements and changing the diet can also have a noticeable effect on tooth color. My husbands teeth were yellowed from antibiotic use as a child and his have whitened considerably in the process of working to reverse his cavity.

        • If over a lifetime, your husband never had his teeth whitened, then he was likely much like most people with some external staining.  Any potential lightening may have been surface whitening  improving overall appearance without whitening the inside of the tooth. 

    • It’s also important to note that the inside layer if your teeth (the dentin) is yellow, and the outside layer (the enamel) is white. If you scrub too hard, you’ll weaken the white enamel and reveal the yellow dentin.

  13. What about those who have natural teeth AND a partial/bridge/denture?  Remove them when using AC or does it stain the artificial ones?

    • It shouldn’t stain any of those, but it also won’t remove stains in the exact same way, so if the artificial ones are lighter, I’d leave them out, if they are darker, I’d leave them in. You probably won’t see as much of a change on the artificial teeth because there is no living surface to remineralize.

  14. I wonder what your thoughts on using this with a 20 month old? She has tooth decay happening with brown discoloration around her lack-of-enamel spots :( We cannot night wean, so I am going to do it naturally. Tomorrow I will be making the toothpaste from your site.

    • It won’t hurt her at all, and it doesn’t have a taste, though the color might make her really curious :-). Is she taking any supplements? I’d encourage the cod liver oil/butter oil blend, the probiotics, vitamin D and some magnesium if she isn’t already taking them, as this will give the internal support for remineralization also. Also, making sure she isn’t eating much grains, sugar, nuts or beans for at least a couple of months will help the remineralization process. Good luck!

      • (oops, meant to reply here, doing so just in case)

        What does the mag do and is there a form I could actually get in her? She’s not much of an eater still. I can squeeze a CLO/Butter oil capsule in her mouth on occasion. I’ve been pondering mixing coconut oil, Vit D, perhaps the CLO/Butter oil into some kefir? She actually drinks that. Might be a great way to hide what she needs. In the past she has enjoyed drinking lemon-flavored fish oil, perhaps that would be helpful too? And about the AC, there wouldn’t be a problem with her swallowing what’s on her teeth? I don’t want it to be a waste, you know?

      • Hi wellness mama. What exactly is the cod live oil/butter oil blend, the probiotics, vitamin D and magnesium do? Also how much of each?

        • the FCLO blend helps replenish Vitamins D, A and K plus Omega-3s, which the body needs to build new dentin and enamel. The probiotics help with the good/bad bacteria ratio in the mouth and the Vitamin D and Mag are necessary for new bone/health formation. I take 1tsp+ of FCLO daily, 2 capsules of probiotics, and Vitamin D and Mag daily.

  15. What does the mag do and is there a form I could actually get in her? She’s not much of an eater still. I can squeeze a CLO/Butter oil capsule in her mouth on occasion. I’ve been pondering mixing coconut oil, Vit D, perhaps the CLO/Butter oil into some kefir? She actually drinks that. Might be a great way to hide what she needs. In the past she has enjoyed drinking lemon-flavored fish oil, perhaps that would be helpful too? 

    And about the AC, there wouldn’t be a problem with her swallowing what’s on her teeth? I don’t want it to be a waste, you know?

    • I don’t think it would be a good idea for her to swallow what is on her teeth because of it pulling out any toxins. If she swallows it, she will ingesting the toxins the AC just pulled from her teeth.

  16. Had a similar experience with McDeath…started feeling drunk and toxic after eating then came on the nausea and diarrhea.  Quickly took a capsule, then dumped 2 caps in water and drank it.  Only threw up twice and within half of an hour I was all better!  I felt like I suddenly woke up.  The fog was gone.  Totally sold on charcoal as a poison remedy and will keep it always.  Next up- trying to whiten my teeth with it!

      • or msg sensitive. i often feel funky, foggy, and toxic after eating in restaurants. must be msg. although they don’t add it, it’s often hidden in sauces and seasonings used by restaurants.

  17. Charcoal is the most disgusting thing I’ve EVER tasted.  It literally tastes like charcoal from the barbeque. This might work but I would never ever ever do it.

  18. My concern is does it damage the enamel of the teeth. Would love to hear from the dentist who told you it’s good for whitening I find it’s to abrasive for the enamel.

    • It is not supposed to be abrasive at all. A couple of dental hygienists have confirmed in the comments on Pinterest that it isn’t abrasive. They also mentioned that baking soda can also be used for brushing to polish teeth.

  19.   I  will never try this again! It stained my teeth and now it looks darker then before. Also  i can’t remove black between my teeth!

      • How often can this be done? I tried it for the first time today and it produced absolutely AMAZING results on not only me but both of my parents as well!

    • My teeth did the same thing. I had to scrub with baking soda after and rinsed and rinsed and my gums are still black, all around the edge of the tooth. I imagine it will go away in a few days, but my actual teeth aren’t any whiter than before I started.

  20. will try this but ill just buy charcoal the one local made from wood hope this help me whiten my teeth and prevent the gengi on my teeth  thank will reply for results and how often did you use it ?and how long are the results will show up? and can this remove bad breath?

  21. Have you tried using charcoal on Veeners or bridges? Just curious if those would stain since they are both artificial.

  22. In south Asia where I’m from many people in villages who can’t afford toothpaste have used charcoal for centuries. It does work.

  23. I just tried this after coming from a cleaning at my dentist.  I figured it would be a good time to start the whitening process.  I opened a 520 mg. capsule of activated charcole that I got from Swanson Vitamins onto my wet toothbrush and brushed for two minutes then rinsed really well.  I also should mention that I have a fixed, bonded bridge on my bottom front three teeth. 
    This in NO way stained any of my teeth and in fact, made them look really clean and I think whiter.  I am going to continue the process a few more times to see if I can get more of a whitening effect, but this did NOT stain my bridge and also the charcole washed away really easily.  Thanks for your really interesting website and keep these great ideas coming!

  24. As an RN I wish you would have placed your warning at the top of your entry.  AC not only changes the Ph of the mouth, but can change the Ph balance of the entire body, which can have dire consequences, particularly for patient s with specific medical conditions like Diabetes, COPD, Asthma, kindey and liver issues, etc.  If you use it for poisoning, be sure to follow up with emergency care asap and if you plant to take it all, but especially regularly – discuss it with your physician and pharmacist. 

    • Most physicians and pharmacists wouldn’t have a clue about it because it’s not made by a pharmaceutical. You are probably quoting something a pharmaceutical would say.

      • Wow – that comment was full of stereotyping! My husband is a physician and pharmacology is all chemistry and organic chemistry, so yes, they do understand basic chemistry. Just because its not made by a pharmaceutical company doesn’t mean that physicians and pharmacists don’t understand its chemistry and how the body responds metabolically. Your post was severely short-sighted. Of course physicians and pharmacists know all about chemicals – they use them every day!

  25. I’ve been using Edible Clay aka Calcium Montmorillonite/Green Clay/Red Clay for years to:

    Whiten, exfoliate, and rid my teeth of germs (my dentist was shocked that I hadn’t seen her in 2 years with almost perfect teeth!), cleanse my intestines for weight loss, exfoliate my face and body, push out metals, parasites, bacteria, toxins from the body, relieve a stomach ache, and to create a natural band aid when I’ve cut myself (you add water and turn it into a thick mud which dries and stays on your skin). I finally divulged my secret about this a year ago and I have several friends and strangers who are hooked like me!

  26. What about fillings? I have some new fillings that are the composite to look like my tooth.  My fillings were expensive, so I hesitate to test this out and end up with black spots in those places. 

    • Others have used it without a problem, but maybe try it on a little spot first to make sure? I’ve found that brushing with baking soda will get any excess charcoal off…

  27. Thanks for sharing this! I found this really interesting and enjoyed the read. I will have to consider having some activated charcoal on hand at our house. :-) 

  28. Live this article !!!! My mum has always told me this story of my pop. He always swore to everyone that charcoal made your teeth white so whenever anythings was charred ( meat wise ) on the BBQ etc he always ate it. Mum says he had the whitest teeth she knew. So I will be pleased to show her this blog post as although what he did was not quite the same I’m glad he knew :)

  29. How does this comport with the fact that charcoal on burnt food is carcinogenic?  Am I missing something here?

    • Two reasons: this charcoal isn’t from burnt flesh and those studies focused on consuming it internally in significant amounts. This type of charcoal is actually used in hospitals to remove toxins from the stomach in cases of drug overdose or poisoning

  30. So how is it best to administer to a baby/toddler (assuming food poisoning) – open a capsule into water and try to make them drink it? And how much is needed?
    Also, for different poisonings, I’d assume capsules would take too long to dissolve in the system – it would have to be administered quickly in a liquid…correct?
    Thanks!

  31. I have read all the comments and am still confused.  I am 45 & have yellow teeth from taking tetracycline when I was a kid in the 70’s.  I had my teeth bleached at the dentist 10 years ago.  My teeth aren’t quite as yellow but they are still in the yellow spectrum after the dentist bleaching.  Does anyone know if this will work to get my teeth any whiter?  

    • It might help pull some of the toxins and help lighten some… my husband had antibiotic related yellowing too and the dietary stuff was what really reversed it for him, especially the Fermented Cod Liver Oil and removing Phytic acid from the diet.

  32. to avoid the mess in the sink, I just step outside, brush my teeth, rinse and spit on the grass….no mess to clean up

  33. My biggest question would be in regards to..what does it do to the enamal of the tooth…hydrogen peroxide will erode the enamal when used consistenly…enamal does not grow back and this leads to increased sensitivity of the tooth..amoung other issues.  I do not want to take a chance on my enamal when it cannot grow back.

    • I’d check out the book Cure Tooth Decay by Ramiel Nagel. Enamel actually can grow back, but it is actually remineralizing from the minerals in saliva (this is why diet is so important). The charcoal will not pull enamel off. Several dental hygienists have commented on this post on facebook and pinterest saying that it is safe.

  34. In my Country (México) Indigenas clean their teeth with a burned tortilla, they have the whitest smile you’ve ever seen. I did it some few times and it really cleans your teeth.

  35. Are both photos of your teeth after whitening?  And I’m concerned about peroxide.  There are toxins in it and it can be damaging to cell health if not diluted.   You need to get food grade peroxide only.  You can contact me if you want more into.

      • how hard is it to take another picture in the “selfie” age. This always happens. People make claims about their teeth being fixed or “whitened” and you would think it’s brain surgery to just take another quick picture with the same quality. instead the pics never match or one is darker and has shadows.

    •  I’m not sure where the concern about peroxide comes from. My DH is 70 years old and literally holds peroxide in his mouth while he flosses. Has his whole life and has the healthiest gums his dentist has ever seen. He uses the stuff from the drug store, nothing special. He also has exactly zero chronic health problems, no high blood pressure, no heart problems, no ED, no nothing. Has everything he came into this world with.

      • The hydrogen peroxide in the drug stores contains heavy metals. They will be absorbed into the body and blood stream. Food grade diluted down to 3% would be a safer choice.

  36. My family has been using Charcoal for years, its our family remedy for almost everything!!! My aunt owns Charcoal Works, she sells a pure form of charcoal, you wouldn’t believe whats in some of the major brands. She even started making a patch form of charcoal, like a bandaid. it sticks to your skin and works like a miracle on bee stings and spider bits. check it out! an amazing lady that sells an amazing product. Its funny because most people i talk to about charcoal think I’m totally crazy. Now I’m not alone!!!

    • DO NOT USE IT!!!!
      Peroxide will, over time, weaken your enamel. You will ultimately end up ruining your progress. You also should never use it on a cut because a cut needs to re-seal and peroxide makes the wound heal from the inside out. Peroxide is good for scrapes but not cuts and NOT your teeth! Use the charcoal but do not use the peroxide!

  37. I think that the whitening may be due to the peroxide(I am an RDH) but the use of AC for poisoning is a fantastic solution! 

  38. Don’t do this. I know about this because where I work we speak about what people used for everyday things in the 18th Century. Yes, it will potentially make your teeth whiter but at the same time it will rip away your enamel.

  39. Hello wellness mama, I have started to research some ways I can whiten my 11 yr olds teeth, she had an accident when she was 8 and knocked a chunk out of her front adult tooth. Unfortunately the nerve was exposed and died and she had root canal to the tooth. As there is no ‘life’ in the tooth it has started to go grey. She has had the chunk rebuilt and it retains its colour but its starting to be an issue for her with peers. We have been told it can be crowned when she is about 20yo or bleach it ( I would rather not bleach her teeth as its chemical and it can make the already brittle tooth more so). We’ll look into this method a little more and find out if it will work on her lifeless great tooth.

    Steph

    • Sorry your child had this front tooth injury. But I wouldn’t advise capping it, but instead replacing it with an artificial tooth. It is now understood that a root canal leaves a permanent hiding place for bacteria which affects your whole body health. There are many tubules in the tooth that do not get sealed off. Read on Dr Mercola’s site for more documentation. The gray color is because it is dead. The charcoal isn’t likely to make any noticeable change.

    • I have read not to use hydrogen peroxide on amalgam fillings, but haven’t seen anything bad on charcoal. It is used as an anti-toxin and can bind to harmful things, so I would think it might bind to anything it pulled out if it did…

      • Hi Wellness Mama! I have a metal dental bridge. I’m not sure what type of metal it is exactly… but it was glued to the back of my six front natural teeth. Will the AC absorb the glue or dissolve/discolor the metal? I’ve tried researching… can’t seem to find anything on this. Please let me know when you can! Thanks so much!

  40. “Black Magic” was invaluable when my children were little. It consisted of 1 tablespoon AC, 1
    tablespoon slippery elm, and 1 tablespoon carob powder. I blended this in a cup
    to a cup and a half of tepid water and added a little honey (tsp or so). Each with
    a straw, the kids slurped it up readily, pretending they were aliens consuming
    strange things. All signs of diarrhea vanished promptly and the kids were up
    and bounding about again. The slippery elm prevents the constipation and the
    carob powder is supposed to be healing to the gut, and also adds flavor. The
    honey helps the medicine go down.

    When we were raising sheep one of the ewes got an overdose of grain and became very sick. It was a holiday and
    when I called the vet, he said that it didn’t sound like she had long to live
    and he was too far away to make it in time, as he was out of town, a couple
    hours away. I decided if Black Magic worked on my kids so well, it wouldn’t
    hurt to try it on our special “Daisy.” I filled a large glass soda
    water bottle with the mixture, added a lamb nipple, and headed to the barn. Sat
    all night with that wooly head in my lap, force-feeding her Black Magic. She
    managed to down the entire bottle, then settled into a sound sleep on my lap
    (she was a full grown animal and only her head fit on my lap), as I sat on the
    straw. Dawn approached, and she stirred awake, rose onto her feet and began
    bleating for her hay. A few weeks later, she shed all her wool, which happens
    when sheep get quite ill. She survived to a very nice old age.

    • I had a similar experience with some of my goats. We had cleared some new land for them, but there was obviously something there they shouldn’t have. Only my favorite goats got it though. Vomiting, diarrhea, pain, shaking, etc. I made a ginger tea, added AC and some oil(that was supposed to cut down on the foaming). Anyway, used a drench gun and gave them each a healthy dose. Within a half hour they were no longer in pain, and by morning they were all still alive – that was miraculous. Another drench was needed on my stubborn buck, but they all survived and were fine by the next evening. I’m positive I would have lost them without the AC.

  41. Activated Charcoal is the best thing to use for a tooth ache. Rub the AC powder all around the gums of the tooth that is hurting.

  42. since it cleanses toxins from the body, would it be safe or effective to use before starting an all natural diet in order to get a jump start on cleansing?

  43. I’m going to try this because I have had irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) for 18 yrs (since my second child was born) and constant intestinal gas – just like Missy! But I’m wondering how much and how often I should use it for these purposes. Can anyone out there offer some advice? I’m 49 years old and weigh 115 lbs – if that matters. Thanks!

    • If I were you, I’d do a bunch of research on probiotics and also possible food allergies (like gluten). My grandma was diagnosed with IBS and probiotics greatly helped her. We also tried going gluten-free, and results were inconclusive, but many of the symptoms of IBS mirror gluten sensitivity. Gluten intolerance can produce any of hundreds of symptoms, or no symptoms at all (crazy!! and very under-diagnosed). Google is your friend here…start searching and reading! (Excuse me if you already know this…of course I can’t tell.)

    • I also have IBS, which is treated mostly with lifestyle changes. I was supposed to do the GAPS diet, which is ridiculous (mostly gluten free plus dairy free and you can only eat certain veggies). I have found, however, that dairy does seem to be related to bloating, and I’ve mostly given it up for the past seven years with great results. Exercise helps reduce symptoms of IBS. Probiotics also help. Sometimes I use bentonite clay internally. Maybe activated charcoal would help too, but I find the above approach is usually adequate.

  44. Great post. Pls answer me questions:
    How often I have to clean my teeth with charcoal – everytime, when I clean my teeth with toothpaste?
    Shall I clean with charcoal Before or After the classic teeth cleaning?

    • No, it doesn’t stain veneers, and unlike the regular tooth whitening strips, it works on veneers and natural teeth. the tooth whitening strips don’t work on veneers. I drink tons of coffee, and the AC keeps both my veneers and natural teeth white.

      • That is AWESOME news. I got veneers 25 years ago and have lamented that my only option for improvement was …..new veneers. After I read this article, I immediately searched for “veneers” and found your post.

        I’m thrilled beyond belief. Thank you

        • Katie: So then I read the rest of the comments, and further down is one from a woman who said the AC actually appeared to have detrimental effects.

          I wonder if you might do a poll of your readers? Or if you have any other information beyond these few comments?

          Thanks

  45. Well whitening with the charcoal is the oldest method but still many people follow it because it provides great results.

  46. Tonight I brushed with AC for the first time I plan on taking pics along the way . Im a long time smoker ,tea and cola drinker and my teeth are a very yucky yellow . Its embarrassing I also have crooked buck teeth sigh I cant afford 300 to get the chemically whitened at the dentist or braces to straighten them for that matter . AC with its many uses will be a staple in my home from now on . So as for whitening and cleaning my teeth feel amazing ! I cant see a difference in color yet but its only day one!

    I brushed with one capsule of AC
    brushed with water
    flossed
    brushed with toothpaste
    rinsed with peroxide

    pics of before during and after

  47. Dear, you need to be VERY careful with that hydrogen peroxide. My MIL cares for a lady who after years of swishing with it and maintain good oral hygiene is experiencing her teeth rotting from the hydrogen peroxide. My MIL consulted with her dentist and I did the same as well and they both confirmed it that is contributes to it over time. I will never swish with it or take it orally. I urge you to plz reconsider using that so-called remember. Thank you for the informative article about the activated charcoal though. Will have to give it a try. Have a lovely evening, dear. xo

  48. Finally got my boyfriend to try this along with swishing with hydrogenperoxid! He was surprised it not only didn’t taste bad, but the back of the hydrogenperoxid bottle actually recommends using it to kill soars in the mouth! Lol, he’ll be brushing with me from now on :)

  49. You have to be very careful with this. Although charcoal is know to whiten teeth it is abrasive to the enamel. Frequent use wil destroy your teeth.

  50. I will definitely be trying this. My family has always used charcoal for various remedies (including spreading a paste of it onto my sister’s mysterious & very painful bite/sting– and her taking it internally– which made it disappear!) but never thought of using it for teeth! I have a big problem with yellow teeth so will try this ASAP.

  51. Someone may have already asked this – but do you know if the charcoal will stain fake teeth implants? The bottoms of my two front teeth are capped with artificial tooth reconstruction stuff because I broke them when I was a kid. Do you think it would stain this?

  52. I would like to try this. I was concerned, because I have veneers. But after seeing the others postings, I’d like to try it. I had my veneers put in in 1985 and they still look great but they have yellowed. All my teeth have, so they match the others. I believe that the natural tooth underneath has darkened because of being covered (much like acrylic nails do). I asked the dentist if there was any way of whitening them from the back, and he said no. So, I’d like to try this as a experiment.

    • Just curious, did you try it on your veneers, and were you happy with the result?

      I have veneers on the top front, plus I had a chip occur on one where I had to have a “mini” veneer bonded over top of the other one, I sure wouldn’t
      want any black lines showing up there !

  53. Its also true that natural teeth whiteners are more safer than the
    chemical products. Because chemical whiteners could also directly harms
    your teeth. So be careful..

  54. I am going to try it today because I cannot spreak in public and I have been looking for solution, my teeth is brown and I have bad breath, thank you very much for telling me this. God bless you real good

  55. What’s the difference between activated charcoal and charcoal from the fire or from burning wood, could I use that? I heard Queen Elizibeth I used charcoal for her teeth. Great article btw, I use Fuller’s Earth and coconut oil and baking mix for toothpaste atm, my teeth have never felt better!

  56. I think it needs to be mentioned that this should be used with caution especially if one takes medications, as the charcoal can interfere with/ remove the medication from one’s body…otherwise it is pretty safe to use…

  57. Is this at all normal that some of the charcoal got stuck under my gum line? I had to use a dental tool to scrape some of it away, it was kind of scary to see dark patches of charcoal under the gum line. Has this happened to anyone, and is this okay or safe, will the rest of it come out?

  58. i use 6% hydrogen peroxide as a dental rise, daily… i swear it has helped whiten my teeth! may try this as well, tho!

  59. Can you explain the AC and hydrogen peroxide a little more, I am very interested in that! Do you just buy hydrogen peroxide from local drug store and mix? Or how exactly does it work?

    Thanks!

  60. I am leaning towards using the capsule form because it seems like it might (potentially) be a bit less messy…and also, its cheaper to start with as a trial to see if it works. Do you (or anyone) have tips on how to break open the capsules? Can you just bite a capsule open once its in your mouth?

    • @Megan. If you haven’t figured out how to open the capsules, here’s what I do.

      How to Open a Capsule

      Make sure your hands are dry, otherwise the moisture will start to melt/dissolve the capsule

      Hold the capsule straight up and down between both hands
      – I like to put the right fingers on the bottom. It forces me to be slow and gentle. Left handers may switch hand positions.

      Look at the capsule. Make sure the half that overlaps the other is on top – See image below

      Tap the capsule on something dry and flat (table, counter, etc.) to get all the powder to go to the bottom

      Gently twist the top half right and left.

      Once you feel it start moving, slowly start pulling up at the same time

      Be careful not to tilt your hands or pull too hard or you’ll spill. If nothing seems to be happening, make sure your fingers aren’t covering the part where the two capsule halves meet.

      Sometimes the cap easily pops apart and sometimes you have to work it.

      If you’re trying so hard that your hands are getting sweaty, you may need to break out the scissors to cut the tip off the top part. I’d do it over the sink because the pill contents may go flying.

      Good Luck

  61. Does anyone know if this stains composite fillings or the material used that holds in my permanent retainer?

  62. This is so very interesting to me and I’ve never heard of doing it. I am a big teeth whitening person, so a new and effective, and safe way is always intriguing to me. I just would like to know what the difference would be between using a capsule and using the other, granulated kind that you mentioned (you gave us a link for that one). If you recommend the capsule just as much, can you provide a link for a good brand for the capsule too. Thanks so much!

  63. Hi Katie,

    I am wondering how charcoal would work for someone like me. My teeth have decalcified from pregnancy and are so sensitive! I have loss alot of enamel and have dentin showing. Do you still think it is still advisable to use the charcoal for whitening? Will the charcoal help remineralise my teeth at all? I read your other post about ways to remineralise teeth. I am hoping to try that. Does hydrogen peroxide corrode the enamel?

    • I’d probably focus on the remineralizing for a few months before trying to whiten with anything, even hydrogen peroxide or charcoal. If pregnancy caused it, you probably need a lot of healthy fats and FCLO to help build it back up…

      • What is FLCO?
        Yes my teeth had loss of calcium and mineral during pregnancy and even more obvious after pregnancy. Do you believe that the babies can take calcium from your teeth? My dentist told me that is a myth but having gone through pregnancy and seeing how terrible my teeth are now, I am starting to wonder

  64. my mom learned me this when i was in somalia and it did really help me get my teeth shiny and bright. It’s good that other people know about it.

  65. hello!, I am a current dental hygiene student and I am interested in offering my future patinents a more holistic approach to oral health (this is how I found your page). With all the crazy allergies going around in our new generations, it is very important to have good natural products available. I do have to agree with maybe providing a fallow-up picture. I would like to know what are the effects of this product on inflammation. by the after picture your gums look a little puffy and inflamme and I’m wondering if that was caused by the charcoal. Thank you!

  66. I just tried it for the first time and some specks of charcoal are randomly stuck in my gums around my mouth. It’s not enough to be noticeable, so would it be alright to leave it alone until it goes away on its own? I just don’t want to pick my gums until they bleed.

  67. Hi Katie!

    Is it okay to brush with the Activated Charcoal everyday? Where can I find the diluted 3% Hydrogen peroxide from; would they have it in Health food stores or would I have to order it online?

    After your done brushing with the activated charcoal, do you then brush your teeth with a Natural Toothpaste like Tom’s or Jason’s or do you only use the activated charcoal? If you also use toothpaste do you brush with the toothpaste before or after the activated charcoal?

    I apologize for all of the questions; I am really excited to try this, thank you for your post :-)

    -Danielle

  68. Interesting and don’t disbelieve the benefits of charcoal but would have liked to seen your teeth pre charcoal.

  69. Can it be used if you have mercury fillings and a root canal? I’m waiting to get all of them removed so can it be used while I have them and then after when they have been removed?

  70. I have to say charcoal is not something I’d thought of before, but looking at the before and after pictures, they do look much whiter :-)

  71. Hi Katie,

    Sorry if you’ve answered this somewhere already, but I’ve read most, perhaps all, of your dental posts and haven’t seen you address the following.

    In a couple of your schedules, it sounds like you sometimes brush with activated charcoal immediately after brushing with the mineralizing toothpaste. Am I understanding your schedule correctly? If so, it seems a bit odd to me: wouldn’t brushing with the charcoal strip your teeth of the minerals that you just provided? Wouldn’t it be better to brush with the charcoal and then with the mineralizing toothpaste?

    Thanks for the clarification!

    By the way, I should add: thanks for being such a great resource!

    Louis

  72. Hi WellnessMama. :) I noticed your link for the recommended powdered form isn’t working, and I was wondering what brand you suggested? Thank you! :)

    • Hey on your page the links for the charcoal are not working is the one u use or will this work the prescribed for life Coal Conunt Ultra fine coconut shell characoal powder?

      Also I was wondering in response to Danielle’s comments all them were good, Im still wondering about the diluted 3% Hydrogen peroxide from?

  73. I have been rinsing with Hydrogen peroxide once a day and then once a week I brush with a baking soda paste. Someone told me that rinsing with hydrogen peroxide will rot my teeth from my gums and that it is extremely dangerous if pregnant or nursing. I researched online and found nothing of the sort about the tooth rotting.

  74. Activated Charcoal is only available over the counter at a pharmacy here in Canada, if anyone is looking for it. I also use it as a treatment for stomach bugs including diarrhea as others have mentioned in the comments. When I went to buy a new bottle from the health food store I discovered it wasn’t available anymore. The woman at the health food store actually yelled at me for being so reckless as to use it for illness. The same woman who’d happily carried it and sold it in her store just a few months previously.

  75. Do you think there is to many other chemicals in Pepto Bismal to brush teeth with that? Isn’t there charcoal in Pepto too?

  76. I would def try it. Let’s face it for years we were duped into brushing and rinsing with fluoride, I have nothing to lose.

  77. AC is also good to see how fast or slow your digestion is. Ttake 4 capsules and write down the date and time. When you pass a black or grey stool look at the date and time and how long since you took the capsules. The digestion should be 18-24 hours. If longer than that you need enzymes, probiotics and maybe some other herbs to push it along faster. If it is less than 18 hours your digestion is too fast and you may not be absorbing your nutrients.
    I’m going to try this AC in the mouth. So glad for the tip as braces have left a pocket in my gums and spraying mouth wash there is bothersome. Also hoping this will help receding gums!

  78. In Vietnam, during the war, people in the country side (farmers) often used charcoal to brush their teeth. So, this is not new to me!! :) good to know that there are people who uses this technique now. Thanks for the article. I helps me to know where to get the activated charcoal.

  79. This post reminded me that when I was young and growing up in England we would take charcoal from the fireplace to brush our teeth! I have often wondered why we did that! I found this website this morning while looking for ways to help a toothache. I am amazed at the helpful information contained here. Thanks so much.

  80. Katie, can you talk more about the diluted hydrogen peroxide? Do you dilute that yourself or do you buy it like that? I have always understood that hydrogen peroxide kills cells of all kinds, it doesn’t seem like something I would want to put in my mouth? Thanks

  81. I been doing this from my Childhood as this is being practised in India from very long time.Especially in South India !

  82. Is it okay to use crushed up medicinal charcoal tablets for the teeth whitening method? also the ones I have are from a vegetable source, is that okay? Thanks

  83. Hey wellness mama! I recently purchased the AC made from wood, will it still work as well as the one made from coconuts ?

  84. I know this question will sound crazy, but I have a cat with gingivitis and I was wondering if this would be safe to give him to help extract some of the toxins?

  85. This really works. I saw this on Pinterest and for 5.00 could not pass it up. I bought Charco- caps, broke one open and brushed gently for 5 minutes. My teeth are gorgeous. I try everything after thorough research. I am not much of a skeptic. This tickled me and I have shared it with everyone who will listen. Activated charcoal is going to skyrocket in price ;>

  86. I read that if you use coconut oil in oil pulling for whitening teeth, it can actually loosen your crowns…does this happen with AC???

  87. Thank you for posting such a great article! I am going to give this a try! One question, though. My front tooth was badly chipped a few years ago. I had to have an emergency root canal and the bottom of the tooth was crowned. It was originally a good match, but now this tooth is two slightly different colors! I read some of your earlier responses, and I’m not really worried about darkening the color of the crown. But do you think it will whiten the “dead” tooth or does the tooth have irreversible decay from the interior? Look forward to hearing from you!

  88. Can you brush your teeth with activated charcoal everyday, or is this something you should only do a few times a week?

  89. Have you used the activated charcoal to whiten your teeth while pregnant? How about the baking soda and peroxide? Obviously, I will check with my OB, but curious what you’ve done.
    Thanks!

  90. Love reading all your posts- Question, is it safe to use the activated charcoal while nursing? I thought you were not suppose to purge the body of toxins while pregnant or nursing because you first flood the body before your rid them? Am I remembering correctly? Thought you would be the one to ask since it seems you have been one or the other for quite a few years straight :)

  91. My sister told me abot the ac. recently. I have had a calcium deficiency when I was a child which caused my permanent teeth to have holes in them. So I have had my teeth bonded for over 30 years. Every dentist that I have went to gives me the same story of how bonding stains and cannot be whitened.I have only been using the ac a few days and there is noticeable difference. I love how clean my teeth feel as well.

  92. I was just curious what the difference was between coconut based AC and petroleum-based AC? And why should the coconut based AC be used to whiten teeth and not the petroleum-based AC?

  93. Have been thinking of getting my teeth whitened at the dentist but now will try this myself, will certainly let you know how it turns out. Thanks as always for yor really helpful advice

  94. Was very hopeful about this. I’ve been brushing with the activated charcoal for a month, and there is no visible difference in my teeth. I took before and after pics, making sure the lighting was the same. Many of the before / after pics online are obviously brightened and blued with editing, you can tell because the skin tones are also different. I was hoping it would work as I can’t afford the whitening at the dentist.

  95. The first time using AC I stained the grout on my countertop…that stuff does not come off easy so beware! After scrubbing for days I finally got the bright idea of mixing it into my toothpaste so at least every time I used it, black clouds wouldn’t puff everywhere. Eventually I just started brushing with it in the shower like twice a week so it would be easier to clean up. Success! I will be mixing up toothpaste batches OUTside from now on but this stuff really does improve your oral health not just by naturally whitening your chompers but truly cleaning your mouth. In my opinion there is no real difference using it straight out of the bag or mixing it with your own toothpaste…one is just a little more messy! Tried using teeth whitening strips before my wedding and they didn’t do jack and made my teeth hurt. AC was a fraction of the price and actually worked with no pain. Its worth a try!

  96. I just started using AC and my teeth feel and look good. I wanted to recommend it to my mother (69 yrs old) but she once told me her dentist told her her enamel was gone or minimized (I think due to eating too much citrus and orange juice).
    I would love to see if it’ll work. I guess if there’s not much or any enamel then she would be trying to whiten her dentin? Does anyone know if I should bother giving her some capsules?

  97. I don’t believe your son got bit by a brown recluse spider. I also don’t believe charcoal would work on a recluse bite as you said. It’s a very dangerous bite, and can take months of treatment to heal. It could even kill a child.

  98. Just wondering if anyone has any information about using AC on teeth that have had the enamel partially scratched due to having braces. (They scratched my front teeth when they were removing the glue.) It’s not down to the dentin I don’t think, but I have had brown stained patches appear in the areas that were scratched, so I’m wondering if the charcoal would act the same way or if it would come off. Thanks in advance!

  99. This is definitely an interesting read. It’s a bit odd but I will try it this weekend. It’s worth to try, I guess. Just a question, is it okay to use the activated carbon bought in pet shops or I should really buy the one in capsule form? Isn’t there any side effects on doing this on the long run? Thanks!

  100. When using the AC for brushing the teeth to help whiten, is toothpaste used in conjunction with that at the same time?

  101. Great tip! But how can I tell the difference between the Active Charcoal made from wood or coconut or petrol based? Does it mention on the bottle? And is this available in pharmacies?

  102. I have used AC for over thirty years along with all my family and friends. Mainly for Indigestion and after eating bad food. It is not harmful. I normally take one to two capsules. I have not tried it for tooth whiting but I will try.
    Most Doctor and Dentist do not have any idea about the old tried and true home remedies, only what they have been trained on. Can’t make any money on those things. One can find AC in any Health Food Store.

  103. Just wondereing if anyone had ever tried blotting brushes? found them on here but wondereed if anyone else had used them first?

  104. Great post- I’m going to try brushing with AC. I do have one question about something you mentioned: using the AC and alternating with other stuff to help with the spider bite (brown recluse spider). Can you elaborate on that and specifically tell me how you made the stuff and how you went about alternating it? I would like to have something like this in our medicinal arsenal, since we just recently moved to the boonies 😉 Thanks!

    • I’m not a doc and this is definitely not medical advice in any way, but I made a paste of AC and water and put it on and covered with gauze and taped it. I left that on for a few hours, then removed, washed and did the same thing with baking soda and plantain in a paste. I alternated these two every couple hours until it was gone. In hindsight, I might have added bentonite clay to the baking soda paste too…

  105. Wellness Mama: I just happen to come across this article. I find it very unorthodox but interesting. I have become a little more teeth conscious because of the loss of a couple of back teeth and repairs that need to be done to two other back teeth and a front one. Should I use this activated charcoal before I use my toothpaste? How many times a week should I use this charcoal? Thank you!

  106. After reading the reviews about activated charcoal and how it whitens teeth, both me and my husband decided to try it. My teeth are stained from years of smoking and coffee, not significantly yellow. My husband’s doesn’t do either but, his isn’t naturally white. The first time we tried the activated charcoal, it appeared to have slightly improved the coloring of our teeth. Then, we continued to use it along with tooth paste for a few days. After, we didn’t notice a difference. I believe the charcoal has made my teeth a shade yellower than they were; my enamel looks a little thinner too. My husband’s tooth color is back the way they originally were. We stop using it after 5 days. My suggestion would be, get regular scheduled cleaning-dentist and use pronamel whitening toothpaste; lil expensive but worth it. If you have $, get cosmetic bonding-whitening, veneers or lumineers. I truly do not recommend using or continuous usage of this product.

  107. I have family history of teeth rotting fast and due to that, no matter what I do, I get cavities… I have a bunch of fillings, it is ridiculous. Would it work on fillings also? Most teeth whiting doesn’t…

  108. Hi! Once your teeth get as white as you want them, is it safe to keep brushing with ac every few days? Or best to stop until you need to rewhiten?

  109. wow it is a great post.i really got new things that activate Charcoal make our teeth white.after reading this blog i found out many new things.this is very informative information to all us.thank you for sharing it with us.keep sharing.

  110. This would be much more helpful if you showed us a before photo of what your teeth looked like without the charcoal all over them. We have no clue as to whether they actually looked any different after by lookig at the two pictures you posted!

    My teeth are more glassy clear looking than white, they are strong but they do not look as healthy as someone with nice white teeth and I do not smoke. I would like to see someone with real before and after pictures so I can feel confident in the advice. Thanks

  111. I tried this for the first time tonight. I’m glad of the warnings because the black mouth would’ve freaked me out! It was very messy – charcoal on the sink, counter, me – but totally worth it. My teeth are noticeably whiter after just using once. I’m a believer!

  112. I used to use Imodium for diarrhea and the ensuing stomach cramps. It worked to get rid of it for a few days, then would return with a vengeance. Somewhere I read to use activated charcoal instead. I tried it (1 capsule, 260 mg., for moderate diarrhea OR 2 capsules for severe diarrhea) and I didn’t get the rebound diarrhea as with using Imodium. After telling my husband for years about how great AC was for diarrhea, he finally chose to ingest it for his constant bowel movements (before AC use, 6-8 bowel movements per day were normal for him). He had success, and it also solved the gas and cramp problems. I buy AC via Puritan’s Pride. They have a buy one get two free deal two or three times per year and buy one get one free several times a year. My last bottle of 100-260 mg. capsules of AC cost only $6.99. Walgreens, Swanson’s, and Vitacost have good prices too.

  113. I just tried this and it worked really well. I’d suggest setting a timer because you’ll wander to the mirror and look at your black teeth then think about Halloween costumes lol, but it worked very well the first time. I’m going to continue using it both to help prevent cavities and for the whitening!

  114. I just tried AC and they really didn’t look that much whiter. I think I had more luck with rubbing raw turmeric on my teeth. It sticks to my teeth so then I brush them for two minutes and it really gets it all over my teeth. They really whiten up doing this.

  115. AC is very scarce here in Nigeria. Is it advisable to burn a bunch of woods, grind the charcoal and use it 4 whitening d teeth? would it function exactly as AC? and moreover, hw is dis AC being made?

  116. Charcoal is effective in cleaning stainless materials. I am amazed to read that charcoal works on teeth also. But I always prefer to have my teeth whitening at cosmetic dental clinics.

  117. Not only charcoal, but in the short time they burn sea grasses and cleans teeth and the teeth were at that time very good

  118. Hi! Do you think this could help with the negative effects of lead exposure? I have been renovating my house and was chipping away paint the other day without a mask on. And I found out it was lead a little while later. I am trying to conceive and I don’t want that to affect a future pregnancy negatively, especially since I’ve had 2 miscarriages since July!

  119. Activated charcoal should not be used if a corrosive substance has been ingested. Also, if you’ve swallowed poison and taken an antidote, do not use charcoal, as it will absorb the antidote first.

  120. Katie,

    You may have already answered this in the tons of comments on this post, but do you have a brand of activated charcoal powder that you trust? I have the capsules and while they are good for travel, I’d really like the powder for more regular use at home. :) Thanks!

  121. Hi!

    Ive just tried this yesterday and it works great!! But I was wondering what is the use of the peroxyde, since its a chemical product? Isnt better to dilute it with water? Im pregnant and some people says that I sould not use it, but I did some research and found nothing saying that AC is harmfull in pregnancy.

    Thanks!

  122. Hi Katie,
    I’m wondering about the effects of putting a few capsules of activated charcoal into a batch of homemade toothpaste…do you have any thoughts on this??
    Also is the charcoal like a one off whitening and you use whenever you want to whiten a bit more, or is it something that should be used regularly?? :)

    Thanks 😉

    • Hi Katie, I have an additional question I’d like to add to Maddie’s question.

      I’m all for using AC for teeth whitening, my only concern is, will it draw out the mercury in amalgam fillings during the whitening process?

      Cheers Toni

  123. Katie,
    I have had intrinsic discoloration since I got my first adult front tooth and my family was never able to afford veneers or anything. Anyway, I was wondering if the charcoal could help an internal stain. Thank you.

  124. Hi Katie,

    I noticed in your video you are using a Bass toothbrush but not the Bass brushing technique. Any reason? Or is that just when you’re doing the charcoal?

    Thanks!

  125. I don’t have lots of time to read through all the comments but I just made sure to clean the sink real well with a microfiber cloth before brushing and spitting so that the charcoal didn’t adhere to any soap scum on the sink. Clean up from the charcoal was just rinsing it away.

  126. Love your blog and use your tips daily….but I couldn’t help but notice you left the tap running while you rinse! Don’t forget to turn it off to save water! :-)

  127. I have heard about this and was a bit concerned since I have a porcelain crown on my front top tooth. I tested a small spot and it was fine so I braved it and went ahead. I am glad I did!!!! It worked better than the $75 whitening trays I got from the dentist in order to keep my natural teeth as white as the crown. And this is much more tolerable with surprising results!

  128. I am having trouble getting past the texture of the charcoal. Can I mix it with coconut oil to make it less dry?

  129. So I had heard about this before and I was a little scared to try it. After reading this article and watching the video I decided to try it. I’ve only done it once and I when I compared my before and after pictures I actually noticed some improvement. I’m definitely going to keep this up and see what my results are.

  130. I immediately ran out and bought capsules! Now my question is how many time per week or month did you do this? Also how did you dilute the hydrogen peroxide- what ratio of water to H.P. did you use? And perhaps a silly question- did you use seperate toothbrushs for daily brushing and charcoal brushing?

  131. I used this only twice and even after the first time there was a noticable difference. I had stains from coffee and years of smoking. Immediately after rinsing it out i could only say wow i couldnt believe it actually worked.

  132. I’m sorry if this was already addressed, but is this safe for kids? After we switched over to Earth Paste, all of our teeth have gotten yellow. Also, my kids have dental issues, and I’m wondering if this would also be helpful for that! We’ve done pretty muh everything else to help them (aside from chewing raw offal???? lol!) so I’m really hoping brushing with charcoal, maybe once a week, will help!

  133. Thanks for this! You always amaze me with fun and new articles with different helpful ideas I can try. I have to admit, when I first found you I was a bit skeptical. But very quickly fell in love with you. I only wish I would have found you 7 years ago when I was pregnant! Seriously! It would have saved me literally had I known about the natural movement then I would have changed my diet and maybe I wouldnt be so sick right now

  134. Really interesting. My mum is Jamaican and when she was a child she used to use charcoal from their wood stove to clean her teeth. This was common practice over there at that time and she has lovely white teeth. I am slowly moving toward a more natural way of living and have some charcoal tablets. I’m going to give this a try for a week and will continue if my oral hygiene stays just as good as with standard toothpaste. Thanks!

  135. can my kids use this? my 8 and 12 yo are very conscious of their teeth and want to whiten them. my husband uses the crest chemical crap and wants to let them try it. i, of course, said no way and told them it would poison their little bodies. they are old enough to not swallow it although if you can take capsules, i don’t see how that would cause harm. i am going to look into this AC some more as my 8yo has stomach aches a lot. thanks!!!

  136. I have been using activated charcoal to brush my teeth for several months now. It’s wonderful, and makes my teeth so white. I’m glad to discover that somebody else does it too! Hope this post enlightens other people to the wonders of AC.

  137. Hi, My daughter and I are trying the charcoal but we wanted to know if we should use it every day and how many days? And also is 30 sec to 1 minute long enough each time. Thanks so much

  138. Hi, sorry if this has already been address, but have you replaced brushing your teeth with conventional toothpaste since using charcoal? Perhaps I’m misunderstanding its uses, but is charcoal is used after using toothpaste or is it used instead of toothpaste?

    Thank you for your wealth of knowledge.

  139. I love to try this but i’m so afraid that charcoal colour my teeth black, is that even possible 😀 i think my teeth colour very easily example blueberries and coffee beacause i had bulimia years ago and that effect also my teeht. Sorry my bad english, it’s not my mother language! I really love your blog and maybe I try even that charcoal! :)

  140. Hi Katie,
    Just wondering if AC would, over time, remove hyperplasia stains? I’ve had them since the age of about 9.
    Also, how do I keep the powder on my teeth so it can soak up toxins? It never sticks, but does it need to stick onto my teeth to work or is it ok to just be on there for a few seconds? Any suggestions?? :)

    Thanks so much,

    Maddie

  141. Katie I am grateful for all the wisdom you share. I’ve refused dentists’ and hygienists’ urgings to pay them for whitening due to a cap I got at age nine (I’m 53). I AM SO GLAD I TRIED THIS! No problems. Your instructions were clear. I got gorgeous bright white results. You give the best information and, again, I am truly grateful to have stumbled upon you. I learn something new every day or two. How’d you get to be so wise? Thank you!

  142. This is the first time I’ve looked this up. The reason being that I remember my Dad (left us in 2005 at the age of 96) said he used to clean his teeth with a burned match.

  143. After reading this about whitening teeth I went to the health food store and bought the capsules. I will admit I was really scared it would stain my teeth. In fact I started off with a dab on one tooth. Lol I rinsed and it didn’t stain so I went for it. I have to say seeing my mouth all black was hilarious but I’m a believer!!! After one try my teeth felt soooo clean, in fact my whole mouth felt clean. I will use this in a daily basis for sure. I’m 55 years old and my teeth are not as white and even after one use I swear they look brighter. I also read if you brush and leave on your tongue for a bit it will absorb bacteria. My tongue is not stained so everyone who is in doubt give this a try. I never write reviews or comments but this is so good I had to leave my input for all the folks who might be afraid to try this????

  144. Am so looking forward 2 using AC. I had read about it as a teeth cleanser in a novel out of India and decided 2 investigate..came upon your site..very informative..even as far as where 2 purchase, and other uses. Mahalo nui loa! Also..could it be used to thwart a urinary tract infection in a 10 yr. old child in lieu of antibiotics?

  145. Really cool idea. However, I wish you had posted a picture of your teeth before, and then after. The “before and after” picture is really a “during and after” type deal.

    Regardless, I’ll be trying this soon.

  146. My mother used to make pickles in Vietnam. she let them soak in water and threw in some blocks of black charcoal- the small cubes leftover from wood that use for fire and cooking.- for a few days. The water was clear and pickles were crunchy and delicious.

  147. Hi Wellness Mama! I’m only 14 but I tried this with some charcoal. It was a capsule one. My mom neglected me when I was younger an I had gingivitis in the end result. Now my teeth are really worn down and really yellow (I also drink lots of tea and coffee) but I was wondering how often to take it. I get made fun of quite a bit for my teeth and I really want them as white as possible as soon as possible. Also, can I use baking soda after? Would that make them whiter?

    • You can use AC as often as you wish (up to once a day). I do it a couple times a week. You can try brushing with baking soda although some people find that too abrasive. You may also want to look into oil pulling for both whitening and oral health in general!

  148. Aloha. So. I posted my interest in March and am now submitting my personal findings. First, Missy Wellness..MAHALO NUI LOA!! I purchased a good quantity of quality AC (loose fine grind CharCoal) online from Prescribed for Life for around $20 USD. My method is: whilst my morning shower, I swirl about a teaspoon of pure village made coconut oil (I bring quantities in from Bali yearly)..release from mouth (do NOT swallow, as you would be swallowing all the nasty bacteria pulled from within directly into your bloodstream via the digestive process)…brush w/ toothpaste (I use an Arm & hammer Spin Brush)..rinse..dip a soft damp separate toothbrush into the AC so it is about half ‘full’ and LIGHTLY brush every part of all teeth, gums, roof of mouth and tongue..(release from mouth/I rinse in my kitchen stainless steel sink..to avoid the staining of my bathroom sink) then return to bathroom and gently brush again with original SpinBrush. I oil pull on a daily basis, do the AC treatment maybe 2x a wk. I am very pleased with the results. I have explained this process and sent others to your site as many have remarked on the brilliance of my smile. seriously. I wish I had known about this in the past..but am making it part of my present and future. I plan to buy some gel caps in order to ingest some AC when I overindulge in my nightly imbibing of burgundy. A hui ho.

  149. Hi, this homemade tip seems great, but I have a doubt: I have very mild damage on the surface enamel in my front teeth (it means the shiny superficial layer has been damaged, and now its a bit rough and dull) wouldnt the charcoal hurt my enamel further? Or even stain it? Because damaged enamel stains way easier.

    Thanks in advance for any answer

  150. Can i use this to remove stain from white fillings?i have one that turned yellow from indian food recently and using only toothpaste isn’t wotking :(

  151. must it be activated charcoal? what if I use a charcoal directly
    from fire wood will it not work??

  152. As a kid I had quite a bad allergic reaction to Penicillin, the doctor put me on activated charcoal. It is brilliant!

  153. Wow! I just recently started following your posts and I’m so glad to have read all the comments here. I have a dentist appointment in a few days for 6 ‘fillings’ and so wanted to try this beforehand because I don’t know what the ‘fillings’ are made of and I’m afraid the dentist will give me the ‘ol conventional “don’t do it” answers. I have some ‘white’ fillings as I’m trying to get rid of the old mercury ones, two porcelean crowns, one gold crown, but my top 5 front teeth (and on Mondy my 6 bottom front teeth) will have ‘fillings’ of IDK what. These aren’t really fillings but more like veneers because my teeth were so cracked and chipped and also very worn from grinding my teeth for 53 years. I do wear a bite-guard to help that though cannot use it when out in public. The tops of my bottom teeth are so worn that you can see the dentin inside and it is pretty yellow. The dentist will be ‘filling’ these areas and blending into the rest of the teeth.
    My concern is that I have now probably 3-4 different tooth materials in addition to the natural teeth (some of which are dying and greying) I’m worried that I’ll end up with a mouthful of different colored teeth!
    I’d love to get this locally but cannot find it. I’ve even called several independent and some compounding pharmacies but they don’t carry it. One told me they can’t even get syrup of ipecac any more.
    I went to the site online that you recommended, by Prescribed. I was saddened to see that I could buy an 8oz for $20 (.09/gram) but I wanted to have more than that on hand. Surprisingly (or perhaps not as I’ve noticed this tactic at other sites) the next largest container jumps to 2.5lbs for $60.
    I wish the sellers would realize that not everyone has $$ to buy in bulk. I just wanted a 1 lb bag which should be less expensive than two 1/2 lb bags.
    I’ve seen this sales tactic on other sites recently, particularly when trying to find a high-grade magnesium oil and magnesium flakes. They sold either 1/2 gallon or 5 gallon sizes only!
    In any event, I’m going to find the charcoal and give it a try, and I’ll take before and after pictures too.
    –I’ve read in some of the comments that people post a “thanks for the pictures.” Are they referring only to yours or have others posted b&a pictures. I don’t see any pictures with any of the comments nor anywhere to upload pictures.
    Thanks again for all of your very enlightening and useful information!

  154. Hi Katie – could the AC be combined with the coconut oil for oil pulling as an all-in-one teeth-whitening process? and have you found that using the AC replaces the need to brush baking soda? Love your blogs!

  155. I have a crown on a front tooth due to an accident-do you think it would be wise to do with a crown? I’m afraid it will not react as same as a normal tooth.

    • I was wondering the same thing… Is it safe to brush with charcoal on white crowns, and is it safe if the enamel on you teeth is not great? Hope to hear from the Wellness Mama or some others who have tried this soon! Thank you!

      • I was wondering the same, when I got braces removed, they polished my front teeth too much and now the enamel is not great, (Not so shinny) and I guess it stains easier, Im sure its more porous now. Is it still safe to use AC? Or will it hurt/ stain my teeth enamel?

  156. On a recent trip to Thailand we bought some lemon and salt toothpaste from a supermarket. I find the mint in normal toothpaste too overpowering. We bought about two dozen tubes, since I can’ tried it in Australia anywhere. And we also discovered charcoal toothpaste. We only bought a couple of tubes, but it is fantastic stuff. When we run out, I’ll be making my own and saving on the airfare. Yes, the toothpaste looks scary at first, but it cleans and whitens better than other types.

  157. Its off course the best remedy, used since 1000 years and is as effective as it was in the time known.

  158. My teeth were always very white but are now stained due to a liquid iron supplement I had to take because I was low in iron. Will charcoal work for this since it’s an external stain? Thank you.

  159. can u leave it overnight on your teeth? my teeth are so butt-ugly, butter yellow and damaged…I need serious help…do u think its safe to do this?

    and also Katie thank u for all ur remineralization advice, my teeth have improved, but yes I still need lots of help!

  160. Hi Wellness Mama!
    Just saw this post about AC…so interesting! I do have a question for you, and it’s probably silly, but- do you think the AC will have a negative reaction with my amalgam/silver fillings? I have started the research on getting my filings removed/replaced (I believe my body is having a negative reaction towards them) and I’m just wondering if it’s ok to use the AC before getting the sliver fillings out. Thanks! :)

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