After staring at the toothpaste aisle in your grocery store for several minutes still undecided about your choice of toothpaste, consider this: while not all toothpastes are created equal, they almost all have the same basic ingredients. Chicago cosmetic dentist, Dr. James Fondriest wants you to get to know more about the sticky paste you put in your mouth every morning and every night.
Toothpaste Contains Abrasives
Half of the ingredients in a typical toothpaste is made up of abrasives. These tiny materials scrub your teeth of plaque and food particles much like abrasives can exfoliate your skin. Whitening toothpastes may contain extra abrasives to polish your teeth and remove some surface stains. While using toothpastes with whitening claims is not bad for your teeth, excessive use can wear away enamel and create tooth sensitivity.
Toothpaste Contains Fluorides
One of the most popular ingredients in toothpaste, flouride helps prevent cavities. This mineral can be found naturally in some plants, animals, and water sources. Fluoride is also added to public water supplies, mouthwashes, and can be applied in treatments. Enamel benefits from the mineral strengthening substance, creating a better shield for your teeth against tooth decay.
Toothpaste Contains Surfactants
This ingredient allows toothpastes to foam. When the toothpaste foams it spreads throughout the mouth evenly. Surfactants also allow the toothpaste to reach between teeth and into small crevices where toothbrushes may not be able to clean. Surfactants can also be found in other hygiene products that foam, like shampoo, face wash, and hand soap.
Toothpastes Contain Oils
Freshening breath and encouraging people to brush more are the two main goals of flavoring. Peppermint, spearmint, and wintergreen oils are the most popular flavor ingredients. However, toothpaste developers are getting creative. Exotic flavors like apricot, cinnamon, lavender, ginger, bubblegum, and orange are becoming more widely available. Alternative flavors often encourage children and people who do not like to brush to keep a daily oral hygiene routine.
If you have questions about which toothpaste is right for you, how to get whiter teeth, or want to improve your oral health, Dr. Fondriest can help. We will be glad to help you achieve optimal oral health. Call our Chicago dentist office at 847.234.0517.We serve patients from Grayslake, Barrington, Lake Forest, Winnetka, Highland Park, North Shore, and Chicago.