The common, questionable synthetic ingredients found in many toothpastes include:
Sodium Laureth Sulphate (SLES) is commonly contaminated with dioxin and reacts with other ingredients to form nitrosamines.
Triclosan was originally registered as a pesticide and is linked to cancer, disrupts thyroid hormones and affects heart function.
Fluoride is linked to cancer, it is a systemic poison and damages the thyroid.
There may also be other potentially harmful ingredients lurking inside your toothpaste tube such as artificial flavors, colors and sweeteners.
The problem doesn't end with your toothpaste, however, as dental care products such as mouth wash and dental floss are also potentially hazardous to your health. Mouth wash has been linked to oral cancers and dental floss is coated with carcinogenic wax.
Aren't there better ways to look after your teeth?
Dental products such as toothpaste and mouthwash are used by most people at least once each day (often several times) and ingredients in these products are readily transported into the body through mucous membranes, so it is advisable to ensure the products we use are safe. However in some countries there is no requirement for full disclosure of the ingredients in dental products because they are classified as drugs rather than cosmetics. This makes it difficult if not impossible for those who care about what they use on their mouths, and the mouths of their children, to avoid unsafe ingredients.
The good news is that there are safe options available for cleaning teeth: safe and healthy products that do list their ingredients are being manufactured by ethical companies. Increasingly there are more all natural and even organic toothpastes and mouth washes being made available to increasingly health conscious consumers.
And finally if we take into consideration studies done by the Weston A Price Foundation on the dental health of people eating traditional diets of whole, unprocessed foods, then it becomes clear that there is strong evidence that brushing, flossing and gargling may in fact be a total waste of time.
Sources for this article include
About the author:
Sue Woledge is a natural therapist, writer and owner of Creating A Toxin Free Future and HCG Diet For Life. Sue is an advocate for natural health and responsible living and is passionate about REAL food, safe products, life-long learning, natural health, the environment and natural medicines. Sue believes that living as naturally as possible and eating a diet consisting of natural, unprocessed foods is key to good health, as is reducing exposures to synthetic and toxic chemicals. A number of books written by Sue Woledge including her latest raw food recipe book are available here.