It’s a task that most people probably don’t put a lot of thought into: choosing a toothpaste that’s right for you. In fact, with the wide variety of options available in most drug stores today, it might seem easiest just to grab whatever’s closest to you and call it a day. After all, every toothpaste is essentially the same, right? Actually, not all toothpastes are created equally. Of course, the bottom line is that you want to choose a toothpaste that you’re most likely to use regularly, but there are certain factors that you’ll want to take into consideration when browsing the drug store aisles.
Types of Toothpaste
First thing’s first: let’s consider the different types of toothpaste that are available today. When perusing the aisle for the right toothpaste, you’re likely to see the following options:
- Fluoride toothpaste. Fluoride is arguably the most important thing to look for in a good toothpaste. This naturally occurring mineral plays a major role in protecting your teeth from decay primarily by strengthening the enamel. Don’t think that you can forego using fluoride toothpaste if your city’s water supply is fluoridated, either. Simply put: if you come across a toothpaste without fluoride listed as an ingredient, put it back on the shelf immediately.
- Tartar control toothpaste. Tartar is the result of plaque buildup on the teeth. When plaque isn’t removed from the teeth in a timely manner, it hardens into tartar. Tartar can then start to build up on the teeth and even under the gums. Tartar control toothpastes, then, work by discouraging the accumulation of tartar. How do they accomplish this task? In addition to fluoride, most tartar control toothpastes contain certain chemical compounds that are effective in preventing tartar buildup. Some even contain an antibiotic to help defeat harmful bacteria in the mouth.
- Whitening toothpaste. There are a variety of whitening toothpastes available today, each promising the user a sparkling smile. The good news is, most whitening toothpastes are safe for everyday use. That’s because, instead of containing a bleaching agent, many whitening toothpastes contain tiny, abrasive particles that polish the teeth during brushing.
- Sensitive teeth toothpaste. Tooth sensitivity—which can be caused by a variety of factors including decay, gum recession, and bruxism—is an extremely common dental health concern. For this reason, there are toothpastes available that are geared towards people with sensitive teeth. How do they work? Most often, toothpastes for sensitive teeth contain chemical compounds that obstruct the paths leading to the nerves inside the teeth. Unfortunately, users shouldn’t expect immediate relief from sensitivity when using this type of toothpaste; it can take several weeks to feel the effects.
Tips for Choosing a Toothpaste
Now that you’ve familiarized yourself with the types of toothpastes available today, consider the following tips for making your selection:
- Look for ADA approval. The American Dental Association (ADA) seal of approval means that a particular toothpaste has been evaluated for both its safety and effectiveness. Every ADA approved toothpaste contains fluoride.
- Consider your unique needs. You know that you need an ADA approved toothpaste, but let’s narrow your options down further. Think about your own needs and preferences. Is it important to you to have a white smile? Are your teeth sensitive to hot, cold, or sweets? Do you prefer the gel or paste texture?
- Consider your family’s needs. If you’re sharing toothpaste with family members, take their needs and preferences into consideration too. Remember, however, that children under the age of 3 should not use fluoridated toothpaste.
Whatever toothpaste you end up choosing, make sure you’re using it twice a day to brush your teeth thoroughly. For more tips on toothpaste selection, contact TruBlu Dentistry in Burbank, IL today!.