When a person walks into a national brand drug store or a grocery store, it is somewhat intimating when there are dozens of toothpaste choices and in some stores, an entire aisle dedicated to toothpaste. The staff at Bella Dental in Katy, TX prepared this guide to help patients understand the differences between toothpastes in order to assist them in choosing one that is most appropriate.
This guide discusses the following types of toothpaste:

  • Anti-Decay
  • Anti-Plaque
  • Desensitizing
  • Tartar Control
  • Whitening
  • Baking Soda
  • Natural Alternatives
  • Homemade

Wel suggests, as a rule, to look for toothpaste that has the American Dental Association (ADA) approval seal printed on the box. Take the time to read the active ingredients on the label.
These toothpastes contain Sodium Fluoride, Stannous Fluoride, or Monofluorophosphate, in order to reduce tooth decay. Some have flavorings that appeal to children.
These toothpastes contain Triclosan or Zinc Citrate, which have anti-bacterial properties. Accumulation of plaque on the teeth creates a breeding ground for bacteria that cause tooth decay and gum disease. By reducing the amount of bacteria, the chances of getting gum disease decrease.
Bella Dental recommends this type of toothpaste only for those that have a dental checkup first to determine why they have tooth sensitivity to hot or cold, in order to rule out any serious dental problems. After a thorough oral exam, the dentist may recommend this type of toothpaste. It usually contains the active ingredient of Potassium Nitrate and/or Arginine that interrupts the nerve signals from the teeth to the brain.
Tartar Control
Tartar forms within about three days if plaque stays on the teeth. Tartar is much harder than plaque and needs physical removal from the teeth by a deep teeth-cleaning procedure at Bella Dental. This kind of toothpaste has the active ingredient of Sodium Pyrophosphate and/or Zinc Citrate, which are chemicals that slow the transition of plaque into tartar.
Whitening toothpastes contain abrasives or chemicals like hydrogen peroxide that slowly whiten teeth over time. For those who prefer faster results, Bella Dental offers a same-day tooth whitening procedure that has immediate results.
Baking Soda
This is one of the few types of toothpastes that does not contain the foaming agent Sodium Lauryl Sulfate. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate causes increased canker sores in some people, which come from an underlying excess of Candida (yeast) in the body. For those who frequently experience canker sores in the mouth, baking soda toothpaste is a better alternative.
Natural Alternatives
Some prefer natural alternatives that do not contains artificial chemical additives. This type of toothpaste might contain the natural ingredients of bentonite clay, calcium carbonate, hydrated silica, and natural oils for flavor. There are fluoridated and non-fluoridated versions. In natural products, Sodium Monofluorophosphate comes from a natural mineral ore called Fluorspar, as opposed to the chemical version created as a by-product of making fertilizer.
For those who do want fluoride, a simple homemade toothpaste recipe is baking soda, food grade coconut oil, and a few drops of food grade peppermint oil. This is a superb alternative to commercial toothpaste.
Bella Dental reminds everyone, no matter what toothpaste is preferred, it is the brushing twice a day, and after every meal, for 2 minutes, that provides excellent oral hygiene. Make an appointment today to come to Bella Dental in Katy, TX for a teeth cleaning that makes your smile sparkle.