How to Choose the Best Toothpaste for You and Yours
If you’re toothpaste shopping at your local store or supermarket, you’ll probably find yourself presented with an almost overwhelming number of choices. Rows and rows of boxes of toothpaste from different brands, with different claims– tartar control, whitening, sensitivity, fresh breath. So how do you choose the best toothpaste for you? We’ve got a few tips to help you narrow down your choices, and of course, your dentist at Tedford Family Dentistry is always happy to answer any questions about choosing the right oral care products.
First ask yourself some helpful questions about your teeth and gums. Do you have sensitive teeth? Are you looking for whitening help? Do you need extra tartar protection? Do you have gingivitis or any other gum disease? Are you looking for a toothpaste that will appeal to your kids? No matter what the situation, there are a few things you’ll want to consider before purchasing a toothpaste.
Is it ADA approved?
Step one is going to be to check for that ADA stamp of approval on the toothpaste you’re considering. To earn this seal, toothpastes must meet the ADA’s Council on Scientific Affairs requirements for safety and efficacy in reducing tooth decay. Essentially, you know the toothpaste will be safe and effective at cleaning your teeth so long as it has been ADA approved.
Does it contain fluoride?
It’s imperative that the toothpaste you choose contains fluoride. This natural mineral fights cavities and protects your enamel, or the outermost layer of the teeth. According to the ADA, “Fluoride strengthens teeth to help prevent tooth decay and remineralizes tooth enamel in the early stages of tooth decay.” The fluoride in your toothpaste can strengthen weakened and compromised teeth, and serve as a preventative defense against future dental problems.
Beware of Abrasive Ingredients
Some toothpaste options contain ingredients that can be potentially harmful to teeth and their delicate enamel. Again, the ADA approval seal will ensure your chosen toothpaste is effective and safe to use, so that’s the first line of defense against toothpastes with potentially abrasive ingredients to steer clear of. For example, a relatively newer trend in dental care involves the use of products that contain activated charcoal. If used regularly, charcoal can be rather abrasive, and could potentially damage tooth enamel or even contribute to increased tooth sensitivity in the long term. Though activated charcoal does have some proven health benefits, there isn’t enough solid scientific evidence to prove dental whitening is among them. Furthermore, charcoal dental products generally don’t contain fluoride, which, as we’ve established, is critical for proper oral care.
If you have any questions or concerns about the dental products you’re using or how to choose the best toothpaste for you, discuss your situation with your Chattanooga Tedford dentist at your next visit. If you need to schedule an appointment, cleaning, or exam, contact our team today!