Exploring “DIY Dentistry:” A Doctor’s Perspective

Dental Fads and Doctor’s Advice

“DIY Dentistry” has recently gained attention, becoming a fad for people who want to improve the appearance of their smiles without visiting a dentist. It’s likely that you’ve seen ads and influencers promoting products like charcoal toothpaste, at-home whitening kits, “teeth buffing” products, and other DIY dental tools. But DIY dentistry is a concerning trend for dentists because many DIY methods don’t work at all, while others are actually dangerous and can permanently damage your teeth.

We want to give you a doctor’s perspective on some of the latest DIY dentistry products, and give you some reasons why treating your teeth should be left to trained experts.

Don’t Use Charcoal Toothpaste – It’s Dangerous And Ineffective

One of the biggest trends in DIY dentistry is charcoal toothpaste. The advocates of these products claim that it “eliminates toxins” and “helps whiten teeth.”

However, the ADA has stated that charcoal is neither safe nor effective in toothpaste. In fact, activated charcoal toothpaste is extremely abrasive. If you use charcoal toothpaste, you can wear down your enamel and permanently damage your teeth by exposing the underlying dentin.

Don’t Buy A Plaque Scraper Kit

After seeing an advertisement for a plaque scraper kit, you may be inclined to attempt to save money and avoid going to the dentist by purchasing dental tool sets from Amazon. Dental hygienists are specially trained to use professional-grade tools properly, and a plaque scraper can cause permanent damage to your gums if you use it improperly. Additionally, it would be impossible to use the tools correctly on your own mouth.  

If you try to use a plaque scraper on your own teeth and gums, you risk damaging your gums, causing issues like tissue recession and irritation. You may even cause the infection of one of your own teeth if you push tartar under your gum line. It’s just not worth it.

Avoid At-Home Whitening Kits – They Can Cause Fluorosis And Tooth Sensitivity

There are some at-home whitening products, such as whitening toothpaste and well-known products like Crest Whitestrips, which are safe, effective, and even approved by the ADA. These are safe to use, though they won’t provide the same results in the short timeframe that you’ll get from a professional whitening solution.

We recommend that you steer clear of at-home whitening kits that include highly-concentrated carbamide or hydrogen peroxide and LED lights that attach to the whitening tray. These kits may include whitening compounds that are composed of up to 35% carbamide peroxide or hydrogen peroxide, which is much higher than most professional-grade whitening compounds.

If you whiten your teeth with these products, you risk exposing yourself to serious tooth sensitivity, gum pain, and even fluorosis. Simply put, it’s not worth the risk. Stick to an ADA-approved product. Or, better yet, come to West Lafayette Dental Studio for a professional, dentist-administered treatment.

Avoid DIY Dentistry Fads – And See A Real Dentist Instead

At West Lafayette Dental Studio, we want our patients to have healthy, beautiful smiles. Don’t waste your money on potentially dangerous DIY dental tools. Instead, schedule an appointment with Dr. Ventresca. You’ll get better results and have the peace of mind that you’re being treated by an expert. Give us a call now at (765) 588-0085, or come visit our office at 500 Sagamore Parkway West, Suite 5W, West Lafayette, IN 47906.

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500 Sagamore Pkwy West
Suite 5W,
West Lafayette, IN 47906