What You Should Look For in a Toothpaste
There’s no shortage of toothpastes on the market, but are they all made equal? Unfortunately, they’re not. Have you checked what’s in your toothpaste lately? If you haven’t, here’s what you need to look for in your toothpaste to make sure you have a healthy mouth!
The Importance of Your Toothpaste
What toothpaste is currently sitting on your bathroom counter? The toothpaste you use each and everyday is one of the most important parts of your oral hygiene care. Toothpaste works with the bristles on your toothbrush to help remove plaque and leftover food from your teeth and gums. If you don’t clean your teeth well after eating each day, plaque and tartar will form. Excessive plaque and tartar buildup can only be removed by a dentist, and can cause dental problems like cavities, tooth decay, gum disease, and more.
Types of Toothpaste
You can find toothpaste in a number of different forms, from a gel to a paste, or even a powder. MouthHealthy, a blog by the American Dental Association explains that, while all toothpastes have slightly different ingredients, they are all generally made up of the same components. Typically, toothpastes include:
- A mild abrasive. This works along with the bristles on your toothbrush to remove debris and surface stains.
- Humectants. This is an ingredient that keeps your toothpaste from drying out.
- Flavoring agents. You know that minty fresh taste you love? That’s a flavor added in to give your toothpaste an enjoyable taste. This flavoring is formulated without sugar in most cases, which means it doesn’t contribute to tooth decay.
- Thickening agents. Also known as binders, this ingredient helps stabilize the toothpaste formula.
- Detergent. As you brush your teeth, you’ll often notice how the toothpaste begins to foam. This is due to the detergents. This ingredient is also what helps the toothpaste easily spread throughout your whole mouth as you brush.
They explain, however, that though they may have similar ingredients, not all toothpastes are the same. Depending on the brand you buy, different ingredients are added to do different things. So, what should you look for in a toothpaste? We’ll explain.
What Your Toothpaste Should Do For You
As individuals, we all have different needs when it comes to our oral health. For some of us, we need to focus more on fighting plaque and gum disease. For other people, the main concern might be whitening your teeth. Here are the different types of toothpastes you should look for depending on your concerns.
If you want to… fight tooth decay
The most important ingredient to look for if you’re looking to prevent cavities and tooth decay is fluoride. Fluoride is a mineral that naturally occurs and is released from rocks into the soil, water, and air. Almost all water contains some fluoride, but it’s not enough to fight tooth decay, according to the CDC. With this known, it’s important to add a toothpaste to your routine that includes fluoride. When fluoride is added to toothpaste, it works to prevent tooth decay. Other benefits of fluoride include less severe cavities, less need for fillings or extractions, and less pain and suffering that comes along with tooth decay.
If you want to… whiten your teeth
For those who want to brighten their smile each time they brush their teeth, look for a whitening toothpaste. The most important ingredient in a whitening toothpaste are abrasives and bleaching agents like hydrogen peroxide that can remove surface stains and brighten your smile.
If you want to… fight sensitivity
Some people might suffer from tooth sensitivity, making it hard to enjoy hot or cold beverages, sweets, and more. For these people, a toothpaste designed to help fight sensitivity will be important to add to your oral health routine. Toothpastes like Sensodyne and more work to help add a layer of protection to your teeth each time you brush, which can help you enjoy those foods and drinks you once loved again without pain.
No matter what toothpaste you’re using, it is still important to see your dentist for regular checkups to ensure you have a healthy smile year after year.
Make an Appointment with Dr. Ania
As one of the most respected dentists in the Boulder, Colorado area, Dr. Ana strives for health when helping you with your smile. Dr. Ania’s dental practice focuses on how oral health relates to other aspects of their bodies and lives. She practices biological dentistry and looks at the whole picture before developing a treatment plan. To make sure your toothpaste is doing as much as it can for you, come see Dr. Ania. Request an appointment now.