When it comes to oral health, there’s one question dentists get more than any other, “What kind of toothpaste should I use?” Patients are often surprised to hear, “It really depends on you.” As long as you brush two minutes at a time twice a day, floss daily, and visit the dentist for preventive dental exams twice a year, your smile should be healthy. That’s right, most toothpastes available at your local pharmacy or grocery store will provide adequate results to maintain your oral hygiene and prevent tooth decay, gum disease, and other health concerns. However, there are certain ingredients you can look for that will offer additional benefits for your smile. Keep reading to learn more about how to find the right toothpaste to keep you smiling.
Find an ADA Approved Toothpaste
The first thing you need to do when buying toothpaste is look for the American Dental Association seal of approval. Toothpastes with this seal will contain an appropriate amount fluoride, the anti-cavity ingredient, and will not contain any potentially hazardous ingredients. The seal is found in a variety of places on packages, but your dentist can show you just what to look for.
What Your Label Tells You
When you’re looking at the label for your toothpaste, most people know that fluoride is important to reduce your risk for tooth decay and keep your smile healthy. However, some of the other words on the ingredient list may be a little less familiar. Some of the most common things you’ll find on the label include:
- Potassium nitrate to treat tooth sensitivity
- Stannous fluoride and triclosan for gingivitis sufferers
- Pyrophosphates, triclosan, zinc citrate to prevent tartar buildup
- Silica abrasives and enzymes to remove surface stains and brighten smiles
- Hydrogen peroxide for removing deep set stains
Keeping Your Smile Healthy for Life
Once you find the right toothpaste, you have to make sure you’re putting it to good use. Start by putting a small, pea-size, amount of toothpaste onto a soft bristled toothbrush. Then, brush teeth with the bristles positioned at an angled towards the gum line. This will allow the bristles to clean the surfaces of teeth and below the gum line. You should always brush your teeth systematically rather than randomly to ensure you brush each tooth. Time yourself to make sure you’re brushing each tooth.
Meet Dr. Sherman
At the Garden City dental practice of Gary C. Sherman, DMD, we’re here to answer all of your questions. From what type of toothpaste to buy to how to replace missing teeth and beyond, we’re here to partner with you to keep your smile whole and healthy for a lifetime. If you’re new to the area or looking for a new dental office to call home, contact the Franklin Avenue Dental Care team schedule your first appointment. We’ll be happy to answer your questions and walk you through new patient paperwork and insurance policies over the phone. We’re always here to help, so please don’t hesitate to give us a call.