by Susan Patterson; The Alternative Daily
When you visualize charcoal, you probably automatically think of family barbecues and campfires. It’s well known that cooking with charcoal can be problematic for your health. However, activated charcoal is far more beneficial. Acting as a natural detoxifying agent and powerful antidote, activated charcoal also offers another surprising benefit: a whiter smile.
When you first look at this fine black powder, teeth whitening is probably the last thing you’d think of. Although you can look quite frightening with a mouthful of black residue, there’s no need to be alarmed. Your teeth will be whiter in a matter of weeks — and you’ll improve your oral health.
What is activated charcoal?
Although activated charcoal is a new concept for many, its use dates back as far as 1550 BCE. Originally used to purify air and water, this remarkable powder is now often used as an antidote. It has a remarkable ability to absorb chemicals and toxins, both in your mouth and throughout your intestinal tract.
Before we dive into the beauty boosting effects of activated charcoal, let’s first examine how brushing your teeth with this substance can lead to improved oral health. Maintaining a healthy mouth is important — not only in terms of gum disease and tooth decay, but also your general health.
It’s been reported in a number of published studies that poor oral health may lead to complications such as a heart attack or stroke. This is because bacteria from the mouth can travel into the bloodstream. In some cases, this can lead to the buildup of plaque in the arteries, as well as inflammation.
How does activated charcoal come into play?
Activated coconut charcoal, for instance, has been processed in order to increase its surface area through small pores. Although you may look like you’ve been chewing on dirt, applying this powder to your teeth can support the elimination of bacteria and toxins, resulting in improved oral health.
Activated charcoal latches onto toxins and plaque bacteria, which can then be effectively removed. It’s also known to balance the pH within your mouth, reducing your risk of cavities and gum disease. A study published in the Annals of Medical and Health Sciences Research reported that activated charcoal offers numerous oral health benefits.
Researchers stated that activated charcoal from both wood and coconut sources is able to change the potential of hydrogen, helping individuals to whiten and remineralize their teeth, prevent cavities and kill cariogenic bacteria. Based on their research, they also reported that activated charcoal can promote healing. It can also relieve pain associated with canker sores, gingivitis, toothaches and dental infections.
Whiten your teeth with activated charcoal today
Now for the moment you’ve been waiting for: a natural and effective way to whiten your teeth. As you’re probably aware, many conventional teeth whitening products contain toxic chemicals that can damage your gum tissue and enamel over time. With activated charcoal, you will experience the opposite in terms of toxin exposure. With each use, you’ll be removing toxins.
When it comes to surface stains, coffee, tea, wine, spices, berries and tobacco are common culprits. When activated charcoal is applied, it actively absorbs tannins, the compounds responsible for stains. The best part is, minerals such as calcium are not affected, which is why your enamel will not be at risk.
How to use activated charcoal to whiten your teeth
1. If you purchase tablets or capsules, simply break them in order to access the powder. Place the powder into a small dish or cup.
2. Add a splash of water — a teaspoon or so should do. You want just enough water in your cup to cover the bottom surface area.
3. With a toothbrush, mix it around so that it forms a paste. Apply to the surface of your teeth.
4. After three to four minutes, spit and rinse.
Although this powder will not stain your teeth, it will often stain clothes. Just be careful and wash your sink thoroughly after you have rinsed. If you do decide to consume the tablets in order to detoxify your intestinal tract, it’s important to consume the activated charcoal two hours before or after any vitamins or medications, as it could reduce absorption.
So there you have it! As odd as it seems, activated charcoal will help you naturally whiten your teeth and improve your oral health. Cover your teeth with this jet-black paste in order to achieve a whiter, brighter smile.
Here are just a few more ways you can use activated charcoal for health and beauty:
Detoxifying the body
Because activated charcoal has the ability to absorb toxins, some believe that it can be an effective detoxification agent and anti-aging treatment, although studies have yet to confirm it. The theory is that by absorbing unwanted chemicals and other compounds, it can reduce allergies as well as diseases they may cause. In addition, activated charcoal can reduce or eliminate damage to your skin.
Soothing intestinal woes
As activated charcoal can adsorb (or bind) gasses, particularly in the lower intestine, it can relieve gas pains and flatulence. While some small studies have confirmed this, others have found there are no such effects. So, the jury is still out as to whether it is truly effective at reducing flatulence after consuming a gas-producing meal. If you want to test this theory out, taking two activated charcoal tablets three times a day. That is amount believed by many to help eliminate offending gasses.
Relieving the itch and sting of a bug bite
Activated charcoal is known to take the sting and itch out of a bug bite. It’s also effective for poison ivy and poison oak. If you want to avoid a big mess, follow this process:
1. Carefully stir together 1/2 teaspoon of activated charcoal with 1 tablespoon of water.
2. Dip a small piece of paper towel that’s been folded twice into the mix, and then carefully lay the paper towel onto the padded area of a bandage.
3. Apply the bandage to the affected area, leaving on for two to four hours and changing out as often as necessary.
Activated charcoal is really a necessity for your medicine cabinet if you don’t have some already. It’s extremely useful, cheap and can even save a life in an emergency!
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