You could spend hours looking at the bewildering range of toothpaste choices on the shelf in your local supermarket or you could just ask a dentist which is best for you.
Here at central London specialist dental practice 76 Harley Street, we are happy to offer advice on anything dentistry related, but if you’d rather not make a special trip, we’ve searched the internet to find the best tips.
Look for a toothpaste containing fluoride
Kelly-Anne Waters is an Australian dentist and lecturer who recently offered her advice in the UK press and she concurs that there is just too much choice.
“The most important ingredient in toothpaste is fluoride” Waters explains although she does point out that high fluoride toothpastes should only be used after consulting your own dentist, particularly with children who might not spit it all out when brushing.
Potential side effects of some toothpastes
She’s less convinced about whitening toothpastes’ effectiveness, particularly when hydrogen peroxide is used as a bleaching agent, because the quantity used is miniscule. Also, foaming agents like sodium lauryl sulphate can have side effects such as irritation and mouth ulcers.
When it comes to toothpastes for sensitive teeth Waters recommends speaking to your dentist first, simply because you need to get to the cause of the sensitivity as it could be a cavity or other problem.
She also is of the opinion that many of the sensitivity products contain unproven ingredients and concludes, “My recommendation is to find a desensitising product that contains fluoride that is effective for you”. Basically, if it works stick with it.
Brushing is more important than the cleaning product
The truth is that whilst the choice of toothpaste can certainly help prevent decay and keep your smile shiny and white nothing makes up for a good brushing regime and regular visits to the dentist.
As dental hygienist and internet blogger, Trish Walraven points out, “It’s the toothbrush friction that cleans your teeth, not the cleaning product”. Good brushing should last at least two minutes and cover every area of the mouth.
As far as the toothpaste goes she recommends using whatever you like on the basis that you’re more likely to brush regularly if you like the taste and your mouth feels clean.
For some advice that is more personally tailored to you, why not book an appointment with one of the hygienists here at central London dental practice 76 Harley Street.