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Oil Pulling & Charcoal Toothpaste: Are Trends Damaging Your Teeth?

The advent of the Internet has been terrific for so many reasons. From access to limitless information, to breaking geographic boundaries and expanded communications. But there are some efforts the Internet can harm rather than help. Take for example trends and fads. Today these spread like wildfire via social media and influencers who swear by D.I.Y tips and tricks to save money and cut corners.

When it comes to your personal health however you should tread lightly with trends and go to a doctor for real advice as this trumps relying on a Pinterest post. Some of the latest fads promising to improve oral health include oil pulling, charcoal toothpaste and more. But are these doing more damage than good when it comes to your teeth?

Let’s take a closer look at 3 trends and that they could be doing to your teeth.

Oil Pulling

What it is: An ancient method of using oil (typically coconut, sold in a jar in solid form) to swish through your mouth.

What it’s supposed to do: Once in your mouth, the solid coconut oil liquefies and supposedly cleans the mouth and teeth of dirt and bacteria around the teeth, whitening teeth and healing other issues in the body like eczema and bad breath.

What it actually does: Experts warn the amount of dirt that’s removed from the teeth using the oil isn’t great enough to make a positive impact – especially when considering complications that can happen if oil gets into your lungs or if people start skipping brushing their teeth altogether because they think the oil pulling cleans better.

Charcoal Toothpaste

What it is: Soaps that include activated charcoal have become popular due to their abrasive ingredient. Everything from facewashes to toothpaste are flying off the shelves.

What it’s supposed to do: Detoxify, cleanse and whiten teeth by removing surface stains.

What it actually does: Used too frequently, there can be damage done to the enamel on your teeth as well as your gums. They also typically skimp on the important fluoride ingredient used in traditional toothpastes to protect from tooth decay.

Morning Health Drinks

What it is: ‘Juicing’ offruits and vegetables, lemon in a cup of hot water and apple cider vinegar shots, are all popular trends many are adding to their morning routines in hopes of better health which they promise to bring.

What it’s supposed to do: Help with digestion, weight loss, cleansing, and numerous benefits when a drink or shot of these concoctions are taken every morning as a routine.

What it actually does: Erode enamel on the teeth, increase tooth sensitivity if used improperly and added sugars going through your mouth when juicing put you at risk for decay.


Looking for a dentist in Wallingford? David L. Fried D.M.D. and his amazing team work closely with patients to develop individualized treatment plans to achieve optimal oral health according to their needs, wants, and budgets.  Schedule an appointment today!