No single toothpaste can singlehandedly improve the health of a patient’s teeth.  We brush our teeth to make our mouth feel cleaner and taste better.

Here are the key ingredients to most toothpastes:

  • Flouride – overtime fluoride can improve the strength of teeth, but fluoride itself does nothing to make teeth cleaner.
  • Foam – Sodium Lauryl Sulfate is soap.  Soap has  a creamy thick texture that equates to a feeling of cleanliness. , however  there’s not enough surfactant, in toothpaste foam to break up the goo that grows on your teeth.
  • Abrasive particles –hydrated silica is the grit that polishes teeth.  It is in most whitening toothpastes. A professional dental cleaning can go much further for whitening and polishing your teeth.
  • Disensitizers –  Teeth that are sensitive to hot, cold, sweets, or a combination can benefit from the addition of potassium nitrate or stannous fluoride to a toothpaste.
  • Tartar control – If your toothpaste has a particular biting flavor, it might contain tetrasodium pyrophosphate, an ingredient that is supposed to keep calcium phosphate salts (tartar, or calculus) from fossilizing on the back of your lower front teeth. One problem with tartar control toothpastes is that in order for the active ingredient to work, it has to be dissolved in a stronger detergent than usual, which can affect people that are sensitive to a high pH.
  • Triclosan – this antimicrobial is supposed to reduce infections between the gum and tooth. However just keep the germs off your teeth in the first place.  Its a waste of an extra ingredient.
    Kid's Premium Toothbrushes - Stage 3
    Kid’s Premium Toothbrushes – Stage 3

Bottom Line

The toothbrush needs to touch every crevice of every tooth, not just where it lands when you go into autopilot and start thinking about what you’re going to wear that day. It’s the toothbrush friction that cleans your teeth, not the cleaning product. Plaque is a growth, like the pink or grey mildew that grows around the edges of your shower. You’ve gotta rub it off to get it off. No tooth cleaning liquid, paste, creme, gel, or powder is going to make as much of a difference as your attention to detail will. Brush your teeth for at least a full two minutes and pay attention to where you are brushing.


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