It’s tough to clean teeth thoroughly without the proper toothpaste. To answer when deciding which toothpaste to use are, which types do you prefer, what does your dentist recommend, and what role does it play in your brushing. These are important factors when weighing your toothpaste options.
Toothpaste is available in either paste or gel. Alongside the many types and brands of toothpaste, there are some ingredients common to most varieties. These include:
- Flavoring – Artificial sweeteners are often added to toothpaste to make them palatable. While many people associate the flavor of toothpaste with only mint, it is available in a variety of flavors. Cinnamon, lemon-lime, and even bubblegum are some popular alternatives to mint.
- Abrasive agents – Scratchy materials, including calcium carbonate and silicates, help to remove food, bacteria, and some stains leftover on your teeth.
- Thickeners – These are agents that add thickness to toothpaste. The gums and sticky molecules found in some seaweeds help achieve the proper texture of the toothpaste.
- Detergents – Sodium lauryl sulfate is the common ingredient that produces the suds you see when you brush your teeth.
- Humectants – Solely for moisture retention, the paste and gel toothpastes contain glycerol to prevent the toothpaste from drying out.
When it comes to choosing the right toothpaste for you, it’s crucial to think about your unique oral needs.
The Importance of Fluoride
Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral. With the addition of fluoride in toothpaste, there is a dramatic drop in tooth decay and cavities. Fluoride helps to protect your teeth from the acid that is released when the bacteria in your mouth has fed on leftover sugars and starches in many ways. First, fluoride can make your tooth enamel stronger and less likely to suffer damaging acids.
Secondly, fluoride can reverse the early stages of acid damage by restoring minerals in areas that have begun to decay.
Brushing your teeth with a fluoride toothpaste is an important way to make certain your teeth are reaping the benefits of this dental-friendly material. Even if the water is fluoridated in your area, skipping out on the use of fluoride in your toothpaste will decrease the concentration of fluoride in your teeth. This can lead to decay and cavities.
Types of Toothpaste
- Tartar Control Toothpaste – Tartar control toothpastes also contain fluoride. Since everyone has a layer of bacteria on their teeth called plaque, it’s important to remove the plaque promptly with good oral hygiene. Otherwise, the plaque hardens into tartar and can build up on your teeth and under your gums, ultimately leading to gum disease.
- Whitening Toothpaste – Your smile is your first impression to give. To help people with flashing the whitest grin, whitening toothpastes are now popular for everyday use. While you might be concerned about the abrasiveness of a whitening toothpaste, it is no harder on your tooth enamel than other types of toothpaste.
- Sensitive Teeth Toothpaste – If your teeth are easily irritated by hot or cold temperatures, there are toothpastes made available for sensitive teeth. These toothpastes typically contain chemical compounds that can take up to weeks to offer relief, however, when used consistently they do help tooth sensitivity by blocking the pathways that are closely attached to the nerves inside each tooth.
What To Look For When Choosing a Toothpaste
There are many imposters in the toothpaste industry that arrive from other countries. Typically, it’s a good idea to check the origin of your toothpaste selection and avoid choosing toothpaste made in China. The toxic substance, diethylene glycol, has been prevalent and is known to be fatal. Look for the seal of ADA approval to ensure your choice has earned this distinction. It’s a surefire way to know that your toothpaste has been evaluated for safety and effectiveness by an independent review board of scientific experts. All toothpastes earning the ADA seal of approval contain the most important ingredient, fluoride.
As you consider the needs of you and your family members, it all boils down to a matter of personal choice and preference. Some who adopt a more natural lifestyle would rather commit to a toothpaste containing only natural ingredients. With so many options and combinations available, trying different brands, varieties, and flavors is the most optimal way to entice your family to brush their teeth.
Dr. Fleming and his caring staff understand how restoring your smile is essential, therefore he can guide you to the best choice in toothpastes for your brushing needs. Start by contacting our office and making an appointment with one of our dental hygienists for a thorough cleaning. We’ll check all areas of your teeth and make our recommendations. Your path to the whitest smile begins with us!