Toothpaste is one of the most damaging products available in your local pharmacy or grocery store and is also one of the bestselling products. In fact, it is a product used by nearly every person daily and is a product that some parents punish their children for if they do not use it morning and night.  You may be asking where we are going with this…

Let me ask you some initial questions.

Would you let your family drink engine degreaser?

Would you eat rat poison?

Would you actively promote children to use a product that contains known toxins that have been repeatedly linked to cancer, blindness and death?

Would you knowingly place in your mouth a product that Federal law required to have the following disclaimer placed on the label every day: If accidentaly swallowed, seek immediate medical help or call a poison control center?

If you are of sane mind, you definitely answered “NO” to all of the above questions. But nonetheless you unknowingly risk your health and the health of your family by actually behaving as if you answered “YES” to all of the above questions by using toothpaste.

First, before getting into this blog, go to your sink and read the back of your toothpaste tube.  If it is a common shelf brand, the poison warnings should be enough to have you heave the tube in the trash.  If that isn’t enough to convince you then read on.

FACT: Many popular toothpastes and mouthwashes contain harmful ingredients, made up of tiny molecules that penetrate through the tissue of your mouth, enter the blood stream, and build up in the liver, kidneys, heart and other organ tissues.

First, let’s discuss Sodium Fluoride which is one of the main ingredients in most every toothpaste…and, oh yes, rat and cockroach poison too.

Most people know that toothpaste and many mouth rinses contain fluoride because that’s what dentists have recommended for years to prevent cavities.  What you probably didn’t know is that most popular toothpastes contain enough fluoride in four ounces to kill a child within a few hours if ingested.

In children, minimal ingestion of sodium fluoride causes nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, and diarrhea. Large doses of this known carcinogen can cause muscular weakness and paralysis, followed by respiratory and cardiac failure.  If that isn’t enough, sodium fluoride is a key ingredient in anesthetic, hypnotic, and psychiatric drugs as well as in Sarin Nerve Gas.  Precisely why your toothpaste tube is so adamant about keeping the product away from children!

But according to dentists Sodium Fluoride prevents tooth decay so why not add it to toothpaste? Stop, there.  Surprisingly, there is plenty of contradictory scientific evidence demonstrating that fluoride does NOT reduce cavities and actually now linking fluoride to tooth and gum deformity, arthritis, allergic reactions and thousands of unnecessary deaths each year from cancer.  And, oh yes, even if you believe the fluoride research, kids get enough of it from the water faucet so they don’t need it in their toothpaste.

Second, almost every toothpaste brand contains an ingredient that as scientists we find almost impossible to accept - Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS).  Simply because SLS creates foaming, it is added to toothpastes to give the impression that the toothpaste is working.  In the cleaning industry, SLS is used in products such as car wash soaps, floor cleaners and engine degreasers.

While that might give you pause for thought, the real problem is that SLS is extremely corrosive and harmful to living tissue.  Research laboratories actually use it to irritate skin on test subject animals and humans so they may test the effectiveness of healing agents.

The Journal of the American College of Toxicology reports that SLS can be retained in the eye, brain, heart, and liver with harmful long-term health effects.

Third, most toothpastes contain the ever popular chemical pesticide, Triclosan.  Triclosan is included in toothpaste formulations as an antibacterial.  Can it kill some negative oral bacteria?  Sure, while killing seven times as many beneficial bacteria as well.

While major brand companies that manufacture products containing Triclosan claim that it is safe, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has registered it as a dangerous pesticide, giving it high scores both as a human health risk and as an environmental risk.  Triclosan is a chlorophenol, which is a class of chemicals that is suspected of causing cancer in humans.  On contact, phenols can cause a variety of tissue irritation.  Worse, taken internally, even in small amounts, phenols such as this can lead to circulatory collapse, convulsions, coma, and death.

If that is scary enough to keep it out of loved ones mouths, chlorinated hydrocarbon pesticides like Triclosan can be stored in body fat, potentially accumulating to toxic levels.  Long term, repeated exposure can damage to virtually every important organ, suppress the immune system, and cause hormonal disruption, sterility, paralysis and brain hemorrhages.

Fortunately, just this past week the FDA has FINALLY exercised sensible judgement and has banned the use of Triclosan and 18 other useless and potentially deadly antibacterial chemicals in our household products.

Fourth, most toothpastes try to look pretty by adding FD&C Blue Dye # 1 & 2.  Yummy!  This is just like eating a mouthful of crude oil as these dyes are synthesized from petroleum.  Even if toothpaste is not swallowed, these dyes can be absorbed within seconds through the skin inside the lips or through the mucous membrane in the mouth.  But seriously, how can you brush your teeth without swallowing some toothpaste?

Recent studies indicate that FD & C Blue Dyes 1 & 2 can trigger a wide number of behavioral, learning, and health problems including severe allergic reactions, asthma, headaches, nausea, fatigue, nervousness, lack of focus, and even cancer.

Fifth, most brand name toothpastes contain Hydrated Silica as a tooth whitener.  Hydrated silica, is actually primarily used as an abrasive compound as it is made from a crystallized compound found in sand, quartz, and flint rock.  The simple fact is that abrasive compounds are about the worst thing that you can do for health of a tooth.  Here’s why.  Tooth enamel re-mineralizes daily from the supply of ionic calcium and phosphorus contained in the saliva.  Scratching the surface of the tooth with an abrasive such as hydrated silica harms the enamel and prevents re-mineralization.

You should no more clean a tooth with hydrated silica then you would clean a glass window with a piece of rough sandpaper.  There is an abrasive index for toothpastes called the RDA Index.  The higher the value, the more abrasive the product is.  At or below around 50 may be an acceptable balance between benefit of removing plaque from a tooth and damage due to abrasion.  Over 50 and it’s just a matter of how quickly the loss of tooth structure occurs based on the RDA and the number of brushes that occur.  Most common brand toothpastes register RDA numbers between 150 and 200.

Sixth, most toothpastes contain glycerine.  Glycerine coats the tooth and completely halts the re-enamelization process.  Worse, glycerine is so sticky that it takes 27 washes to get it off the surface of a tooth.  Use a product containing glycerine once a day and your teeth may never re-mineralize again.

Seventh, taken as a group, the ingredients in almost all common toothpastes increase acid wear on teeth and gums.  Acidic saliva erodes and de-mineralizes tooth enamel; causing cavities and increased hot and cold sensitivity.

Obviously, typical over the counter toothpastes should be avoided, as it is incredibly dangerous for adults and children alike.  Read the labels knowing this and you will be able to make better choices.

Published by Sadie