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What You Need to Know About Your Toothpaste

Have you ever thought about what’s in your toothpaste? Here’s how your regular dental hygiene routine may be doing more damage than good to your teeth.


Your toothpaste should help you maintain good dental hygiene and a bright, healthy smile. Yet many dentists & researchers agree that some of the common ingredients found in toothpastes could actually damage your well-being if they are not used correctly.

Using the wrong toothpaste can lead to several problems including:

  • Tooth decay
  • Oral cancer
  • Tooth sensitivity
  • Damaged gums

At Marlborough Dental Centre, we encourage our Calgary patients to schedule regular dental cleanings & checkups so that we can ensure the health of your teeth and gums and provide advice on which dental products are best suited to your individual requirements.

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Ingredients to Avoid in Your Toothpaste

Brushing your teeth twice daily is an important part of any dental hygiene routine. However, most consumers don’t look at the ingredients of the toothpaste they purchase and how these might adversely affect oral health.

Dentists recommend checking for the following chemicals, which, if used incorrectly, could cause more harm than good to your teeth:


The most common abrasive found in toothpaste is hydrated silica - also used as a moisture absorber in new clothing & footwear.

While mild abrasives are used to help break apart plaque and other debris, dentists recommend staying away from stronger ones as they can grind away at the teeth and lead to the loss of enamel.


Triclosan is a known antibacterial, which is why it is included as an ingredient in toothpaste.

  • However, it is also classified as a pesticide and may pose a risk to human health if used incorrectly.
  • Additionally, this ingredient has even been suspected of increasing the risk of cancer.

Artificial dyes & colorings are used in several toothpaste brands. These dyes can cause serious health issues including:

  • Allergies
  • Asthma attacks
  • Nausea
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue
  • Cancer

DEA is found in products that foam, such as toothpaste. This chemical affects the body in numerous ways including:

  • Disrupting hormones
  • Promoting cancer

Most dentists recommend against using products with this chemical as repeated exposure to DEA greatly increases your risk of kidney or liver cancer.


This is another common ingredient that is found in many toothpastes.

It creates the foaming texture many patients associate with toothpaste but contrary to popular opinion, it is not this foam that cleans the teeth but rather the mechanical action of the toothbrush.

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate has many adverse health effects including:

  • Skin irritation
  • Increased risk of eye problems
  • Increased risk of cancer

Given these effects, it is best to leave out this ingredient from your dental hygiene routine.

Why Regular Dental Cleanings are Important

Professional dental cleanings are an important part of any dental hygiene routine because they allow your dentist to check the health of your teeth & gums and whether or not there are more serious conditions that require treatment.

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It’s important to use dental cleaning appointment as an opportunity to ask your dentist about the toothpaste you are using. They may be able to recommend a product with low relative dentin abrasivity and/or one that is free of sodium lauryl sulfate.

DO NOT let any concerns stop you from brushing your teeth. Instead, book a comprehensive appointment at our Calgary clinic and let our dentists help you select a proper toothpaste and perform a professional dental cleaning to ensure the health of your teeth & gums.

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To find out more about the costs & benefits of regular dental cleanings, contact our Calgary dentists today at 403-248-2066.

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