Need to Know: What’s Inside Your Toothpaste

Demystifying Toothpaste

Toothpaste. You use it everyday, sometimes three times, gets in contact with your saliva. You might swallow a bit of it. More importantly, it cleans your teeth and makes your breath fresh. So, have you ever looked at what your toothpaste contains? Toothpaste is used to promote oral hygiene. In a nutshell, a good toothpaste contains the all-important fluoride, as well as abrasives, detergents, humectants, and flavoring.


Since we know fluoride well enough, let’s focus on the others, such as abrasives. Abrasives are cleaning and polishing agents mild enough to remove stains, clean yet preserve tooth enamel.The degree of abrasiveness depends on how much water it contains, the size and shape of its particles, the source and purity, and how it has been prepared. Abrasives should not form new compounds with other components in the toothpaste. Examples of abrasives are hydrated silica, hydrated alumina, calcium carbonate, and dicalcium phosphates. You must know that these compounds are ineffective without the scrubbing action of your toothbrush.

Flavoring agents make the toothpaste taste better. There are various natural and artificial flavorings and sweeteners such as saccharin; sorbitol also adds a sweet taste. The ADA does not recommend addition of sugar. Additional ingredients may or may not be necessary, depending on your dentist’s recommendation. These are teeth whiteners, which can only remove external stains; pyrophosphates, claimed to prevent plaque formation; potassium nitrate or strontium chloride for tooth sensitivity.

Recommending Best Toothpaste in Downtown Seattle

Know more about the toothpaste you’re using and if it’s your best choice. We make recommendations appropriate for each unique patient because we know what’s in toothpaste.