No toothpaste will be able to save the smile of an individual who is nonchalant about good oral hygiene; however, according to Ada Cooper, DDS, who is the spokesperson for the American Dental Association (ADA), the smiles of individuals who take their oral hygiene seriously can benefit from using a toothpaste that addresses his or her particular dental needs.
Always Choose a Toothpaste That Carries the ADA’s Seal of Acceptance
In order for a toothpaste to receive the ADA’s Seal of Acceptance, it must meet the association’s requirements for effectiveness and safety. The claims made on the toothpaste’s packaging must be true.
Choosing a Toothpaste
There are more than 350 different types of toothpastes, powders and gels available, which is why choosing just one may seem like an overwhelming task; however, the information below should help you sift through the numerous options available to find the product that will meet your dental needs the best.
Toothpaste Ingredients and Terms
Re-mineralizes and strengthens tooth enamel – considered by the ADA as ‘nature’s cavity fighter.’ It coats the teeth; thus, forming a shield that protects the teeth from cavity causing acids. Prescription toothpastes like PreviDent contain large amounts of fluoride and can help prevent cavities.
Tip – When brushing your teeth, spit out the toothpaste, but do not rinse. This allows the fluoride to stay on the teeth longer.
Xylitol (sweetener), saccharin (sweetener), cinnamon and peppermint is used to enhance the flavor of toothpaste.
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS)
SLS is a detergent that creates the foaming action; however, it can cause dry mouth, canker sores and allergies.
The mild abrasives used in teeth whitening toothpastes prevent additional stain buildup and also help polish the teeth. Although these toothpastes will not alter the actual color of the teeth, they can remove the stains left behind by beverages like tea and coffee.
Whitening toothpastes can cause the teeth to become sensitive; furthermore, excessive use may damage dental work and tooth enamel. To attain a whiter smile, consider using Ultra Brite Advanced Whitening or Rembrandt Deeply White toothpaste.
If you have crowns and/or porcelain veneers you should avoid using toothpastes that are designed to whiten the teeth or control tartar. These toothpastes can remove the shine on porcelain veneers and crowns, cause tooth sensitivity as well as damage the enamel.
Potassium Nitrate and Strontium Chloride
These ingredients are used to treat sensitive teeth. An ADA-approved toothpaste for sensitive teeth is Sensodyne.
Tartar Control Toothpastes
These products contain Zinc Citrate and Pyrophosphates which assist in the prevention of mineral deposits on the teeth; however, these ingredients may also cause the teeth to become sensitive. One of the ADA-approved tartar control options is Crest Tarter Protection.
This ingredient helps reduce bacteria; however, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warns that excessive use can lead to bacteria that is antimicrobial resistant.
Intensifies the effects of the foaming agents and detergents that are used in toothpastes. Some people have allergic reactions in their oral cavity, which may cause tissue sloughing.
Alumina, Dicalcium Phosphate, Hydrated Silica, Sodium Bicarbonate and Calcium Carbonate
These are abrasives that give toothpastes their cleaning power by assisting in plaque removal. These abrasives can also cause abrasion which will eventually lead to damaged enamel; furthermore, highly abrasive ingredients can cause tooth sensitivity.
Knowing the pros and cons of each ingredient will help you choose the toothpaste that will suit your needs the best. At Espinal & Willis – Carolinas Center for Advanced Dentistry in Rock Hill, SC, we concentrate on helping our patients attain the smile they have always wanted. Proper oral care with the right toothpaste, daily flossing, biannual cleanings and dental checkups can help keep your smile gleaming no matter what your age. To learn more, contact Espinal & Willis – Carolinas Center for Advanced Dentistry today.
Contact Espinal & Willis – Carolinas Center for Advanced Dentistry today to schedule your dental cleaning and checkup. We look forward to serving you. Call us at 803.327.4166 today!