It might have happened to you before: you run out of toothpaste, run out to get some more, and you can’t remember which of the hundred and one brands you and your family use. It’s enough to fill anyone with a feeling of confusion – why do there have to be so darn many kinds of toothpaste?!
At Panama City Smiles we know how you feel – there really are just far too many types of toothpastes out there, and most of them don’t do a very good job of standing out. We want to help take the mystery away from buying toothpaste – it doesn’t have to be tricky?
What To Look For In Your Toothpaste?
Every single toothpaste worth its foam contains three basic elements: an abrasive material to scrub away bacteria, a detergent so your toothpaste foams up and carries bacteria away, and fluoride to restore lost enamel. Those three are present in most every kind of toothpaste you can buy, or at least the kinds worth buying.
We know what you’re thinking now: what else do I need to watch for? There’s quite a few things that you need to consider when buying toothpaste!
- Make sure that anything you’re considering buying has the American Dental Association’s seal of approval on it. The ADA tests toothpastes for safety and effectiveness, and if that seal is on there you know it’s dentist recommended.
- Keep an eye out for fluoride! Non-fluoride toothpaste still gets rid of bacteria, but it doesn’t repair all those microscopic damaged spots that happen every day. Regular fluoride use does.
- Beware of toothpastes that aren’t manufactured in the United States. A 2007 recall on Chinese manufactured toothpastes still turns up occasionally, and a lot of it contains diethylene glycol. This cheap sweetener is also really dangerous. Stick with buying a recognized brand at a store you consider reputable.
- When it comes down to it choosing a toothpaste is all about preference. You can buy different brands with distinct flavors in a variety of types, so when in doubt just go with something you know everyone will like!
Making Sense Of The Toothpaste Aisle
All those boxes staring back at you, waiting for you to make a selection. But which one do you grab – the whitening one? What about the antigingivitis one, or the antibacterial variety?
It’s tough to make a call, especially when you’re not sure if the language on those packages actually means much of anything. Here’s a breakdown of some common types of toothpaste and what they’re actually capable of doing.
- Whitening toothpaste is incredibly popular, but let’s be honest: it isn’t really going to brighten your smile. What it can do, however, is remove more recent stains. This can keep your teeth at their current shade for longer – especially good if you’ve recently had a whitening treatment performed!
- Antiplaque and antibacterial toothpastes are just two names for the same thing. They’re designed to help pull away and kill more oral bacteria than the typical toothpaste. Some contain a very mild antibiotic, while some offer an antibacterial product. Regardless, these can be beneficial if you’re dealing with increased oral bacteria counts or gingivitis.
- Anti-tartar toothpaste is pretty much the same thing as antiplaque, and what it supposedly does isn’t realistic. Tartar is calcified plaque that can’t really be removed by anything but a professional cleaning. Much like whitening toothpaste, anti-tartar toothpaste is able to stop the development of fresh tartar
- Toothpaste for sensitive teeth uses special compounds to fill the microscopic gaps in your tooth enamel to prevent sensitivity. By closing these pores you can eliminate sensitivity in just about a month. You need to keep using this kind of toothpaste, though, or its benefits wear off.
The Last Critical Step
Brushing twice a day with your preferred toothpaste and flossing nightly are the ideal way to keep your smile healthy, but there’s one critical step that you can never neglect: professional cleanings and exams at our Panama City dentist office.
There are places in your mouth where you simply can’t reach at home, and those are the places most likely to have problems. When we see you we’re able to clean those areas as well as identify any potential problems before they become serious. Professional care is the only way to be sure that your teeth and gums stay healthy for life!
Give your teeth all the protection they need by calling us today at 850-588-0185 or by requesting an appointment online. We look forward to seeing you soon!