What are the Different Types of Toothpaste?

​Toothpastes can be so confusing, there are so many types and brands.  What should you use?  Agents used with a toothbrush to clean and polish teeth are called dentifrices.  They are supplied in paste, powder, gel, or liquid form. Toothpastes are generally useful to maintain dental health. Toothpastes containing fluoride are effective at preventing tooth decay. Toothpastes may also help to control and remove plaque build-up, promoting healthy gums.  Using toothpaste when brushing the teeth does not necessarily impact the level of plaque removal (Which is why you need to go to the dentist twice a year).   However, the active ingredients in toothpastes are able to prevent dental diseases with regular use.

What is toothpaste made of? 

Toothpastes are derived from a variety of components, the three main ones being abrasives, fluoride and detergent.

The abrasives are meant to aid in the removal of plaque to prevent the building of tartar (calculus).  The most effective way of the removal of calculus from the tooth is your preventative dental appointment twice per year.

Fluoride, in various forms, is the most popular and effective active ingredient in toothpaste to prevent cavities.    The fluoride in toothpaste has beneficial effects on the formation of dental enamel and bones.

The detergents or surfactants found in toothpaste as well as many other products assists in the uniform distribution of the toothpaste, improving its cleansing power.

What are the different types of toothpaste? 

There are many types of toothpaste with different functions allowing one to find a toothpaste specifically for what you want.  Of course, there are the fluoridated toothpastes to fight against tooth decay and cavities which also strengthen the enamel of your teeth.

There are herbal toothpastes if you’re not a big fan of chemicals in your toothpaste.  Herbal toothpastes only contain natural ingredients, making them biodegradable.  Some do come with fluoride to aid in the prevention of decay and cavities, without the fluoride they are mostly ineffective in the prevention of such decay and cavities.

If you’re one of the people who suffer from tooth sensitivity, there is a toothpaste made just for this affliction.  This type of toothpaste covers the microscopic holes in the tooth leading to the nerves thus blocking those nerve endings from irritation.  It may take up to 4 weeks to reap the benefits of this type of toothpaste.

There are whitening toothpastes on the market containing ingredients to assist in whitening your teeth on a daily basis.  These toothpastes are not as powerful as whitening treatments and they can also increase tooth sensitivity.

Tartar Control Toothpastes contain chemical compounds to prevent plaque buildup and solidification.  Again, Tarter and plaques are best addressed in the dental office with the tools that are used to remove the tartar and plaque from your teeth.

Smokers toothpaste is designed to assist in removing the stains frequently left by nicotine and tar. These toothpastes contain much higher abrasives than fluoridated toothpastes.

There are also toothpastes made specifically for children that have much less fluoride than adult toothpastes. It also has a lower abrasive count to reduce tooth sensitivity.  Toothpaste should not be ingested as it can have toxic effects, thus everything is of lower concentration in children’s toothpaste.

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