There's nothing better than a bright, beautiful smile to make you feel confident and happy. And there’s nothing better than the right toothpaste to help maintain your oral health and make sure you have the healthiest and best looking pearly whites possible
When it comes to choosing toothpaste, you may be overwhelmed by all your options. There’s toothpaste for sensitive teeth, whitening teeth, preventing cavities, and tartar protection in addition to many different flavors, sizes, and brands. Here are some useful tips to help you discover which type of toothpaste is right for you.
Toothpaste can do a lot more than simply clean your teeth. Depending on the type you choose, it can help fight cavities, strengthen your teeth, and remove stains. If you have sensitive teeth, there are toothpastes designed to help reduce the pain that can be caused by brushing. While all these types of toothpastes are safe, stronger formulas meant for whitening may agitate sensitive mouths so consult a pharmacist if you are concerned about sensitivity.
Organic toothpastes are made with all natural ingredients and no added chemicals. If you are conscious of the environment or want to avoid non-natural ingredients, organic toothpaste may be right for you.
There are also toothpastes formulated specially for children. They are non-toxic and great for those who are new to brushing and may swallow the toothpaste when cleaning their teeth.
Most non-organic toothpastes contain fluoride. Fluoride helps protect your teeth against cavities and decay, which is why dentists often give children fluoride treatments. However, there's some scientific debate about potential, negative side effects that fluoride could have on your body. If you’re concerned about allowing you or your family to ingest fluoride it’s best to stick to organic brands or consult your pharmacist or doctor.
In addition to fluoride, some toothpastes contain chemical compounds like sodium lauryl sulfate. Also known as SLS, this compound causes toothpaste to foam but can also be toxic in large amounts. SLS is not found in children's toothpastes or organic toothpastes and can be avoided by looking at the ingredients list.
Most toothpastes are equally effective in maintaining your dental health. The biggest differences are the added benefits in specialty toothpastes, such as ones made for whitening or sensitive teeth. Brushing your teeth regularly is very important for your oral health so choose a toothpaste that you'll enjoy using every day. For added peace of mind, look for a toothpaste that is approved by the American Dental Association.
Although the number of toothpastes on the market keeps growing, choosing a toothpaste doesn't have to be overwhelming or confusing. By checking the ingredients and making sure the toothpaste addresses your particular needs, you can maintain a beautiful, healthy smile for years to come.
* This information is for general educational purposes only. The information presented is not a guarantee or representation that the procedures are covered under a Humana Dental or Vision Plan.
Last updated August 2014
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