Ever find yourself standing in a shop, staring blankly at the row of toothpaste?
We’ve all been there. With so many toothpaste brands and types available – all claiming to be the best – it can be a tricky decision. Do some work better than others? Should you go for the more expensive options? Are certain ingredients essential? Here our team of experts attempt to clear up a little of the confusion and give their opinion on the best toothpaste currently on the market.
Fluoride is the key to success
When choosing a good toothpaste, the most important factor to consider is fluoride. This naturally-occurring mineral has been shown to prevent tooth decay and cavities – and, as such, it’s found in most toothpaste. However, the exact concentration can vary greatly from product to product.
According to the NHS, the best toothpaste for adults contains 1350-1500ppm (parts per million) of fluoride (1000ppm for children). Anything less than this will provide little to no protection. Therefore, although most over-the-counter products do meet the recommendation, it’s always worth double-checking the fluoride concentration of a new product before you add it to your basket.
You should also be particularly wary of herbal toothpaste. These very rarely contain fluoride and, in the long-term, some of their natural ingredients (e.g. lemon) can actually damage your teeth.
What about the other ingredients?
Aside from fluoride, toothpaste usually contains a variety of other ingredients. Some of these ingredients have been shown to help common dental issues and conditions. For example, potassium nitrate is often added to create ‘sensitive toothpaste’, abrasives are incorporated to produce ‘whitening toothpaste’, triclosan is used as an anti-bacterial agent and to reduce plaque.
But, our advice? Don’t get too hung up on these extra ingredients. There really isn’t much difference between ‘sensitive’ or ‘whitening’ products and a generic tube of toothpaste. In fact, some of the extras may have a harmful long-term effect (e.g. abrasives will wear down your enamel) – and, to address your dental issue, the best option is usually to visit your local dentist or hygienist.
It’s also important to avoid products with added sugars and sweeteners. In our opinion, the best toothpaste will be the one with the shortest (and simplest) ingredients list.
The importance of price
Toothpaste differs greatly in terms of its price and most people believe that more expensive options are better. In truth, there’s absolutely no need to be paying over the odds.
Providing it has the recommended level of fluoride (and you brush twice daily), it doesn’t matter which brand you choose – or how much it costs. Our advice is to simply look for the best fluoride concentration, at the cheapest price. If that’s a supermarket’s own-brand, that’s perfectly fine.
So, which is the best toothpaste to use?
Here at Kiln Lane Dental, there isn’t one single toothpaste brand that we would recommend over others. The main purpose of toothpaste is to keep your teeth clean and to prevent decay. Therefore, as long as it contains the right level of fluoride, you’re on the right track. What is more important, is how often you brush, floss and visit your dentist for a routine check-up.
If you would like more information on the best toothpaste to use or the best ways to look after your teeth, please feel free to get in touch. We’re always on hand and happy to help. Either give us a call on 01744 25776 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll get back to you.