The toothpaste market is a large one, and new kinds of toothpastes are cropping up all the time. Each brand of toothpaste claims to offer benefits like fresher breath, reduced plaque, and a whiter smile. But how many of these claims are backed by science, and how many are just marketing hype? What type of toothpaste will offer the best results without harming your teeth? Here’s what you need to know.
Whitening Toothpastes: Microbeads Can Be Irritating
Advertisers are constantly touting the benefits of a whiter smile in an effort to sell more whitening toothpastes. However, not all whitening toothpastes will do an effective job of whitening your teeth – and some may cause more harm than good.
In 2014, Proctor & Gamble issued a statement saying that it would start removing microbeads from its toothpaste products after a dental hygienist found microbeads trapped in a patient’s gums. While the American Dental Association has stated that microbeads don’t pose a health risk, they can be irritating, and consumer attitudes are shifting away from microbeads and toward non-abrasive whitening toothpastes.
In 2015, Congress passed the Microbead-Free Waters Act, which bans microbeads from all rinse-off cosmetic products (the act defines toothpaste as a cosmetic product) manufactured or sold in the United States. The law is set to take effect in June of this year, which means soon, microbead toothpastes won’t be on store shelves anymore.
If you’ve used microbead toothpastes in the past and find them irritating, you may want to switch to a non-microbead option. All Crest toothpastes are already microbead-free, and offer a variety of other health benefits.
Natural Toothpaste: Not All It’s Cracked Up to Be
Natural toothpaste has been gaining popularity in recent years. While it’s admirable to want to move toward healthier alternatives with fewer chemicals, abandoning the proven science of standard toothpaste in favor of unproven natural remedies can be dangerous.
Natural toothpastes are often fluoride-free, which is problematic due to the fact that fluoride has been proven to prevent cavities. In one 2003 article in the academic journal Evidence-Based Dentistry, the authors examined over 70 different studies on the efficacy of fluoride and concluded that fluoridated toothpaste is an effective cavity-prevention tool. If you’re using a non-fluoridated natural toothpaste, you may be at risk of tooth decay.
While standard toothpastes by mainstream brands are your best bet, you can still use natural toothpastes provided that they contain fluoride. One of the best natural toothpastes on the market is made by Tom’s of Maine, a personal care products manufacturer with an emphasis on natural, non-toxic solutions. Tom’s of Maine sells four natural toothpastes that have been approved by the American Dental Association, all of which contain fluoride. You can find the list of Tom’s brand approved toothpastes on the ADA Seal Shopping List at www.ada.org.
Look for the ADA Seal of Acceptance
No matter what kind of toothpaste you choose to buy, it’s essential that your toothpaste bear the ADA Seal of Acceptance. This seal guarantees that the toothpaste in question has undergone extensive testing and has passed all ADA measures of quality, efficacy, and safety. The process of acquiring an ADA Seal of Acceptance involves thorough clinical studies, lab tests, and a peer review to ensure thorough product vetting. Any product that has the ADA seal is guaranteed to be a highly effective product that is safe for everyday use.
Finding the right kinds of oral hygiene products can be a struggle, as the market has a variety of options for consumers to choose from. Your local Tucson dentist can help you to determine what products are best for you. For more information or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Badie, contact Badie Dental at (520) 433-9800.Leave a reply →