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Toothpaste 101

Toothpaste is not always sticky. It can be a gel, powder, or a paste that you brush on your teeth and gums to help remove plaque buildup and improve your oral health. According to the American dental association (ADA), toothpaste is important for oral health because it helps remove plaque and bacteria on your teeth and eliminate periodontal (gum) disease. Most toothpaste also contains fluoride, which can enhance enamel and fight tooth decay.

What is toothpaste?

The exact ingredients of different toothpaste may vary slightly depending on the benefits touted by specific dental supplies brands, such as whitening teeth or reducing gum inflammation. In general, toothpaste includes the following ingredients:

Mild abrasives such as magnesium carbonate, dehydrated silica gel, calcium carbonate, hydrogenated aluminum oxide and phosphate salts.
Glycerol, sorbitol, or other so-called "moisturizers" can prevent the toothpaste from drying out.
Thickening agent, such as seaweed or mineral colloid, synthetic cellulose, or natural glue, which gives the toothpaste a uniform appearance and texture.
Fluoride can make enamel stronger and more resistant to decay.
A flavoring agent that does not cause tooth decay, such as saccharin.
Detergents, such as sodium laurate, make toothpaste foam.

How to pick the right toothpaste for your teeth

On a typical drugstore shelf, there is a dizzying array of toothpastes to choose from, and trying to find the right toothpaste can be daunting. "A man almost need a PhD to withstand teeth of chaos", spokesman of the American medical association, at Boston university Henry m. Goldman before dental school of medicine in clinical lecturer Richard h. Price said.

When choosing toothpaste, make sure the product is safe and do as requested. Toothpaste containing fluoride is regulated by the U.S. food and drug administration (FDA) because they can cause disease. These products will display a standard "pharmaceutical facts" panel that lists active ingredients, warnings and other relevant information on the package. Toothpastes without fluoride are considered cosmetics and therefore are not subject to FDA oversight. However, these products should still provide a list of ingredients. To avoid counterfeit and unregulated products, avoid any unclear toothpaste, or have no proper labels.
Confused toothpaste buyers can find additional guidance by looking for ADA certification. The logo shows that manufacturers are participating in ADA's voluntary testing of product safety and effectiveness. For example, any toothpaste containing sugar will not be approved by ADA.

"With the Ada, you know it's going to do what it says," Dr. Price said. Price has retired from a private group in Newton, mass., for 35 years.
Hundreds of oral care products have ADA seals. To see the complete ADA approved toothpaste list, check out ADA's website.

The benefits of fluoride in toothpaste

A key ingredient in toothpaste is fluoride. Fluoride has broad benefits for both young and old. "Fluoride toothpaste isn't just for kids - it's good for our lives," price said. "In toothpaste, fluoride makes tiny tooth decay, hardening the teeth and making it more resistant to acid attacks on bacteria, thereby slowing down the effects of these acidic bacteria."

Fluoride security

Although the United States food and drug administration (FDA) require a fluoride toothpaste with warning labels, urged parents to contact poison control center, but if their children are not careful intake of toothpaste, the food and drug administration (FDA) scientific affairs committee took the position of the FDA warnings, points out that the risk of fluoride intake for children. According to ADA, children can't swallow enough fluoride from the toothpaste when they brush their teeth, leading to serious problems. However, in order to be on the safe side, Price recommended limit children under the age of five in the size of a pea toothpaste, and supervise their brushing your teeth, because most of the children did not learn to rinse your mouth instead of swallowing after brushing your teeth.

Toothpaste with special teeth and gums

No matter what your personal oral health needs are, you may have toothpaste.
If you have sensitive teeth, find something that contains potassium nitrate or strontium chloride. To fight gingivitis or tartar, choose toothpaste containing pyrophosphate, triclosan and zinc citrate. In addition, you can find products designed to fight bad breath, or use special tools to help whiten your teeth.
Price advice: "if you have special needs, such as for cold or heat sensitive teeth, or tar accumulation and looking for those who are able to solve these problems of toothpaste, or talk to your dentist suggested."