Have you ever considered switching to natural toothpaste? Take a look at the list of ingredients on the regular, big-brand toothpaste varieties and it might just sway your decision!
As consumers, we have a tendency to presume that any products we buy are totally safe, and fit for human consumption. Most of the time, we don’t even bother to read the labels – so we often don’t actually have a clue what’s in our food, our cosmetics, or our personal hygiene products. We trust that the manufacturers always have our best interests at heart – right?
But, sadly, this isn’t always the case, particularly when we take a look at toothpaste. What many consumers fail to realize is that toothpaste is actually more of a cosmetic product than a health product. We use it primarily to freshen our breath, and to keep our teeth looking white and clean.
And as such, regular shop-bought toothpaste contains some pretty harsh, even harmful ingredients – as the primary focus is to get that gleaming smile, rather than to maintain healthy oral hygiene. A sad fact, but a true one nonetheless.
[bctt tweet=”Natural toothpaste keeps your mouth healthy, with no harsh chemicals in sight”]
But don’t worry. Natural toothpaste can actually achieve the same benefits as regular toothpaste (a gleaming smile, fresh breath and healthy gums) – and without compromising your health with the use of harsh chemicals. Here are three reasons why natural toothpaste is far superior to the regular store-bought varieties.
1) You Can Make Natural Toothpaste from Everyday Ingredients
If you want to get started using natural toothpaste, then you can easily switch from regular big brands to all-natural, eco-friendly varieties such as Davids’ Premium Natural Toothpaste as featured in our October Ecocentric Mom Boxes, or for little teeth – try natural toothpaste for kids from Jack n Jill which our Mom & Baby Box subscribers tried in April 2016..
But if you’re feeling a little more adventurous – you could opt for making your own natural toothpaste from everyday ingredients. Some of the things that you can use to clean your teeth and maintain great oral hygiene might surprise you!
For example, you could brush your teeth with good old-fashioned sea-salt. The antibacterial properties of salt help to maintain a healthy mouth and gums, while the mild abrasion of salt helps to gently lift surface stains from your teeth (if you’re worried about abrasion, simply dissolve the salt first).
Another low-cost method is to practice oil pulling on a regular basis. Oil pulling basically involves swishing oil over your mouth and gums for a minimum of twenty minutes (either coconut oil, olive oil or sesame oil), before rinsing with water. Strong anecdotal evidence suggests that oil pulling helps maintain healthy gums and also aids with whitening teeth and removing stains.
2) Natural Toothpaste is… Well, Natural
Natural toothpaste is better for you because, plainly, it doesn’t contain some of the hidden ‘nasties’ that regular toothpaste does. Some of the common ingredients in regular toothpaste have been criticized in recent years due to their dubious properties – and yet manufacturers still insist on pumping our toothpaste full of them. Some of the regular offenders are as follows:
Fluoride is a naturally-occurring element found in nature. But don’t let this fact fool you into believing that fluoride is totally safe. A growing body of experts claim if children take too much fluoride when they are young they can suffer a condition called fluorosis which causes teeth to become mottled. Ingesting large amounts of fluoride can also suppress the immune system, contribute to certain cancers, and lead to birth defects!
Triclosan is an ingredient that you can find in many different consumer products, not just toothpaste. It is used in toothpaste due to it’s ability to help prevent gingivitis – but this appears to come at a cost when you delve a little deeper. Triclosan has been linked to concerns over antibiotic resistance and endocrine disruption. In addition, some studies have shown that triclosan can alter effects on human and mouse cell lines!
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate
Ever thought you were brushing your teeth with shampoo? Seems pretty silly, but this is actually true when we consider that sodium lauryl sulfate (or SLS) is actually a form of soap, and is a common ingredient in shampoos and other cosmetics products. It’s the SLS in toothpaste that creates a ‘foam’ when you brush, and it’s thick and creamy texture gives teeth the feeling of being clean.
3) Natural Toothpaste is Better for Your Health
It might seem like a tall claim that all natural toothpaste is better for your health, but when we take the case of fluoride as an example you can begin to see why. Fluoride is a natural substance, and the amount of fluoride present in most toothpastes is relatively low. But when you consider that you’re brushing your teeth twice (or more times) per day, every day, 365 days a year – you can start to understand how unhealthy amounts of fluoride can enter your system.
The same goes for the other unpleasant ingredients found in toothpaste. It doesn’t matter that their quantities are small, or that the manufacturers tell us to spit out our toothpaste – somewhere along the line you’re going to end up ingesting ingredients that aren’t meant to be ingested. It’s an unpleasant inevitability.
But with all-natural toothpaste, you don’t run this risk. Plus, if you go down the route of making your own toothpaste from natural ingredients, you may well experience certain other health benefits too!
Take coconut-oil pulling for example. A recent study actually found that oil pulling using coconut oil helped to reduce plaque formation on the teeth, and also helped to reduce gum disease!
You see? Mother nature always knows best!
Ready to Give Natural Toothpaste a Go?
How about you? Are you ready to make the switch from chemical-filled brands and take a more natural approach? Or, perhaps you have some concerns about switching to a natural toothpaste and want to know more information?
We’d love to hear your thoughts, so please feel free to share them with us in the comments section below.