Avoid Emergency Dental Visits
The Ultimate Toothpaste Guide
No one likes dental emergencies. One of the best ways to prevent this is taking care of your teeth. You have probably found yourself in this predicament before. As you turn down the toothpaste aisle, you are faced with more toothpaste multiplicities than you thought possible. You have no idea what the difference between “Total”, “Complete,” or “All in One,” or if there even is a difference. Should you get the whitening toothpaste? What about the tartar control? This guide will breakdown the benefits of each toothpaste so you can pick the one best for you.
In today’s society many want the aesthetic benefits of whiter teeth, but you need to be aware that they can cause sensitivity. If you find your teeth more sensitive to hot and cold when you use it, you can alternate times you use whitening toothpaste and an alternate toothpaste. For example, use whitening toothpaste after your morning coffee and regular toothpaste at night before bed. You can also try baking soda varieties. They can be less abrasive than other whitening toothpastes.
Tartar Control sounds like it is good thing right? Isn’t that why we all brush our teeth? But if you have a lot of decay, tartar control toothpaste will cause you to have more sensitivity. Call the office and ask your hygienist if she would recommend tartar control for you.
If you already have sensitive teeth, both of the above might scare you off. What should you use? Sensodyne toothpaste is a good choice. It helps put a barrier over your teeth. You can also ask your dental office for fluoride varnish treatments if this is not enough to help you.
What about Fluoride?
So what about fluoride? Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral in the water and cities regulate the amount so it isn’t too much. When you use any fluoridated toothpaste, it allows fluoride to be present during remineralization. Minerals are then deposited into the tooth enamel which help strengthen your teeth and prevent dissolution during the next demineralization phase. Kids’ toothpaste typically has less fluoride than adult toothpaste because kids sometimes swallow the toothpaste instead of spitting it out, and in excess qualities it can be dangerous. If kids are able to spit out toothpaste, they don’t necessarily need children’s toothpaste.
What about Natural Toothpastes?
Worried about chemicals in toothpaste and want to try natural varieties? Be careful with natural toothpastes if they don’t have fluoride. First, make sure you don’t have cavities because fluoride helps with cavity prevention. Look for natural toothpastes that keep out the foaming agents such as sodium lauryl sufate (SLS) but still have fluoride. If you have dry mouth, you should stick with natural toothpastes that are SLS free because SLS can exacerbate dry mouth. You can also look for Biotene products, as it also helps with dry mouth.
You heard it before but it is because it works: brush 2 times a day and floss once. Electric toothbrushes work great but aren’t necessary. Make sure if you use a Sonicare electric toothbrush that you use it as a forty-five degree angle for maximum benefit. If you struggle flossing, you can try a waterpik instead.
For the best recommendation, ask your hygienist at you next cleaning what would be best for your mouth. For example, if you have gingivitis, your hygienist might recommend a new product out called Parodontax that has antimicrobial agents. The American Dental Association website also can be of assistance. Going in twice a year for cleanings helps you stay on top of your oral health and gives you an opportunity to visit with your hygienist for personal recommendations. It will make the toothpaste aisle less daunting.
Dr. Roberto Monteagudo is an expert in advanced dentistry, full mouth reconstruction, neuromuscular dentistry and sedation dentistry. He attended the Las Vegas Institute of Advanced Dental Studies from 1999 to 2006 and graduated from Marquette University, School of Dentistry in 1990. Dr. Monteagudo speaks frequently throughout the Wisconsin area on advancements in dentistry and patient education. Dr. Roberto Monteagudo lives in Milwaukee with his lovely wife, Gina, and their seven children whom they make a top priority. He also enjoys outdoor activities and is deeply committed to giving back to his community through charitable events. His warmth and caring combined with his commitment to patient comfort through sedation dentistry, leading edge, gentle, and non-invasive technologies is the reason that his patients travel long distances to see him.