This article is to help you choose a toothpaste. First, what is the purpose of toothpaste? The most important reason to use toothpaste is to prevent tooth decay and gum disease. There are three main ingredients in toothpaste to prevent tooth decay and gum disease: fluoride, abrasives, and surfactants.
Isn’t fluoride in toothpaste harmful to the body?
Fluoride is an ingredient that prevents tooth decay. The bacteria that cause tooth decay eat sugar and create excrement. Because it is acidic, it dissolves the surface of the teeth and cavities begin. At this time, the fluoride absorbed by the tooth surface increases the resistance to acidic substances. This reduces the chances of getting cavities. So, most toothpastes contain about 1000 ppm fluoride. Since the fluoride content of commercially available toothpastes is not significantly different, there is no need to choose a special one.
Some argue that fluoride-free toothpaste should be used because fluoride is a poison. However, this is a kind of horror marketing that exploits people’s vague fears. Fluoride is already in the water you just drank. Of course, eating too much fluoride can be toxic. However, unless you deliberately drink purified fluoride, the chances of harm to your health from fluoride in your daily life are extremely low. Since the concentration of fluoride in toothpaste is very low, it is unlikely that it will be poisonous, even if you unknowingly eat small amounts while brushing your teeth for the rest of your life.
Still a little worried? So you want to use a low-fluoride toothpaste? You don’t have to. Because you only need to squeeze a little bit of toothpaste and use it. If you use half of the usual amount, the concentration of fluoride is given by half.
Why are abrasives and surfactants included?
The purpose of brushing your teeth is to remove food debris. Food residues adhere to the surface of the teeth in the form of a very sticky paste, so it is difficult to completely remove them by brushing alone.
At this time, the surfactant chemically dissolves the food waste. Then, very fine grains of abrasives physically remove food debris from the surface of the teeth. If you wash dishes with only water with your bare hands, it is difficult to remove the sticky and oily food residues on the surface of the dishes. Dishwashing detergent (which acts as a surfactant) and a scrubber (which acts as an abrasive) are required to clean the dishes. The same goes for the tooth surface.
Wouldn’t the abrasive wear out the teeth too much?
Tooth wear is actually caused by improper brushing. Many people have the habit of intensively brushing a specific area for too long and too hard. The abrasives in toothpaste have precisely calculated particle size and content. So, if you brush your teeth in the right way for the right amount of time, you don’t have to worry about the wear of your teeth.
I usually have a sore tooth in my teeth. Need a low-abrasive toothpaste?
You don’t have to. Just like the fluoride mentioned earlier, you just need to wring out a little bit of toothpaste. If you use only half of what you normally use, you are using a low-abrasive toothpaste that contains 50% less abrasive.
Surfactants are ingredients of soap. Is it okay if I put it in my mouth?
Surfactant is a generic term for substances that allow water and oil to mix well. It is already widely added in cosmetics and food. It makes sense to know whether the amount of surfactant included is high or low, or what type of surfactant it is. However, the idea that ‘surfactants are unconditionally harmful to the body’ is not correct.
Toothpaste contains only safe amounts of proven surfactants. Nevertheless, if you want to use a toothpaste that contains less surfactant, you can also use a small amount of toothpaste. There are also some toothpastes that use natural surfactants, so you may want to consider choosing such a toothpaste.
3 main ingredients of toothpaste
Fluorine, abrasives, surfactants. These three ingredients are almost all of the functional ingredients in toothpaste. If you feel uncomfortable with these ingredients, you can squeeze a little bit of toothpaste and use it. If you want to use a fluoride-free, abrasive-free, and surfactant-free toothpaste, simply brush your teeth with a toothbrush and water without using toothpaste. Don’t be fooled by expensive toothpastes that claim to have special features and ingredients.
Advertisements for toothpaste that contain ingredients to treat or prevent gum disease are hype. Gum disease is caused by plaque and tartar. Therefore, removing plaque and tartar is the only treatment and prevention method for gum disease. There is no ingredient that can cure or prevent gum disease by eating or applying it.
There are many toothpastes that claim to have anti-tartar or tartar removal properties. But the truth is this. Getting rid of food debris is the best way to control tartar. Therefore, all toothpastes have anti-tartar properties. Moreover, tartar that has already formed and has hardened cannot be removed by brushing. In conclusion, there is no toothpaste that removes tartar.
Toothpaste for sore teeth may work.
Almost the only functional toothpaste that really works is toothpaste for sore teeth. There are thin tubes called dentinal tubules on the surface of the teeth. Through this tube, a cold stimulus from the outside is transmitted into the tooth.
Toothpaste for sore teeth contains an ingredient that blocks the entrance to the dentinal tubule. And these toothpastes contain less abrasives. So, the symptoms of soreness are actually improved.
Conclusion: Buy an affordable toothpaste.
Just choose an affordable toothpaste from a wide range of products on the market. This is because the essential ingredients in toothpaste are almost the same from product to product. There is not yet a special toothpaste with amazingly special ingredients. If you are concerned about the harmful chemicals in toothpaste, just squeeze a little bit of toothpaste and use it. Don’t forget to rinse your mouth thoroughly after brushing your teeth.
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As you mentioned here, the core ingredients in toothpaste are common across the board, meaning that it doesn’t really matter which one you go with. Sticking with a cheaper option may be best.
Thanks again for the comment highlighting the point.