As more users join social media and information-sharing sites like TikTok, it is easier to spread false medical advice. Recently, people have published self-declared “dental hacks” to perfect their teeth.
None of these TikTok dental hacks reflect the opinions of dental professionals, and we can help debunk these potentially harmful practices.
Viral Dental Hacks and Their Dangers
Here are some popular dental hacks as seen on social media and why they are unsafe:
- Filing teeth: People have started taking a nail file to their teeth to smooth unwanted ridges or uneven lines. Unfortunately, this method can create irreversible damage to your tooth’s nerves and enamel. Adult teeth do not grow back, so filing your teeth can create uncomfortable sensitivity and remove necessary protection.
- Brushing with bleach: A common “whitening hack” is brushing with bleach or a hydrogen peroxide and baking soda solution. When used in small quantities, baking soda can have a positive effect on your teeth. However, when combined with bleach and applied frequently, your teeth can lose enamel. These chemicals are abrasive, so you could end up with oversensitivity and permanent damage.
- Applying charcoal: Activated charcoal has been popular online and endorsed by celebrities for its “whitening” qualities. Many dental professionals agree that people should not use charcoal because there is little research on its effects. Charcoal scrubs may give an illusion of whiter teeth, but they are abrasive and can negatively affect your gums.
- Drinking apple cider vinegar: Some TikTokers suggest drinking a shot of apple cider vinegar every day. Though apple cider vinegar has some positive health benefits for your blood sugar or cholesterol, it is highly acidic. Liquids like undiluted apple cider vinegar can strip enamel and weaken teeth over time.
- Gargling coconut oil: Some TikTok dental hacks claim that swishing coconut oil in your mouth can whiten teeth, help gums or prevent cavities. There is little to no proof this method works, so we do not recommend this as a solution.
Contact Dental Choice Today
Social media can be a fantastic gathering ground for collective information or tips. Still, it’s essential to consider your options when you come across a new dental hack online. In the worst cases, these methods can do more damage than good.
At Dental Choice, we strive to help our patients feel good about their teeth. We perform many services , so you can avoid potentially harmful at-home remedies. Find your local clinic online or set up a free consultation today!