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With the myriad of options on the market today, it is getting harder and harder to choose the right toothpaste for your dental needs. Toothpaste used to be sold as aCosmetic Dentist Marielaina Perrone DDS one size fits all but with sensitivity, enamel recalcifying, gum issues, dry mouth, or for teeth whitening it has become much more customized to each individual.

The primary function of toothpaste is to clean teeth and prevent tooth decay. Fluoride is a main ingredient in almost every toothpaste on the  market today. Fluoride has the ability to enhance remineralization of the tooth’s enamel  which can allow for reversal of very small tooth decay.

Different Types Of Toothpaste

Whitening. This has become quite popular to the general public. These teeth whitening toothpastes contain hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, or some other custom ingredient. These toothpastes work in a variety of ways to whiten your teeth. Some work through the mechanical action of brushing while others work chemically to whiten our teeth. Some are even able to remove staining present on our teeth from our daily eating activities.

Sensitivity. Tooth sensitivity is a very common issue for many of us. Luckily, there are many good sensitivity toothpastes on the market today including crest pro health line of toothpastes. Many of these toothpastes contain potassium nitrate. The potassium nitrate is able to plug the holes in our dentin layer of our tooth to form a protective layer, protecting the nerve, thus relieving sensitivity.

Remineralizing. These types of toothpastes allow for tooth enamel to repair itself and remineralize. This is only effective in small areas of decay and will not work for very large tooth decay. A good example of this is colgate prevident or GC MI paste with recaldent.

Cosmetic Dentist Marielaina Perrone DDSXylitol. This is a commonly used as a sugar substitute but it also has the added properties of not allowing bacteria to adhere to tooth enamel. This gives it the ability to lower a person’s risk for tooth decay. It has also been found that xylitol when combined with fluoride (fluoride concentration greater than 0.8 ppm) it can provide additional remineralization benefits.

SLS free toothpaste. SLS or sodium lauryl sulfate is the bubbling agent in toothpaste. For some people, SLS causes irritation to oral tissue, apthous ulcers (canker sores), peeling or red gums.

Mouthrinse in toothpaste. Many toothpastes contain mouth rinse, supposedly to help gums, and give fresher breath.

Fluoride free. Some people prefer natural toothpaste without fluoride.

Specialty toothpaste for children. It is important to choose a toothpaste specifically for children because a toothpaste with fluoride when they are too young to swish and spit will be swallowed. The level of fluoride in toothpaste is much higher than in the water supply, fluoride if swallowed often, can be harmful. As a child gets older, you can use children’s toothpaste with fluoride, but only a pea size amount.

Toothpaste Conclusion

With the multitude of toothpaste choices comes the responsibility of choosing the right toothpaste for you and your family. It is important to use the toothpaste that suits your needs. Brush at least twice a day to stave off tooth decay as well periodontal disease. Luckily, for dentists and patient, with all these choices a toothpaste can be custom selected for each individuals needs.

 

Xylitol is a sugar alcohol sweetener used as a sugar substitute. Unlike other sweeteners, xylitol is actively beneficial for dental health. It has been shown to reduce tooth decay to a third in regular use.

How does Xylitol Work for Better Dental Hygiene?

There have been numerous research studies that have shown the benefits of chewing gum sweetened with Xylitol after meals and snacks. Xylitol makes an excellent sweetener, as it has many of the same properties as regular table sugar (sucrose). However, unlike table sugar, xylitol reduces tooth cavities.

Xylitol is a natural sweetener derived from the fibrous parts of plants. It contains far fewer calories than table sugar and has less of an effect on the bodies overall blood sugar levels. Xylitol has a low glycemic index of 7, compared to sugar’s level of 83. It also does not break down like sugar and can help maintain a neutral pH level in the mouth. Xylitol has the ability to inhibit the creation of acid in the mouth. By lowering the acid content in the mouth, this in turn lowers the risk of tooth decay.

Tooth decay happens when bacteria in your mouth consume the sugars we eat. When you eat food containing ordinary sugar (sucrose), it gives bacteria on your teeth energy, allowing them to multiply and start making acids that can eat away the enamel on the teeth. This acid attack causes tooth decay and cavities to begin to form.

Xylitol Gum Marielaina Perrone DDS

Xylitol Gum

Products sweetened with xylitol create an unwelcome environment for bacteria. They simply cannot stick to teeth in a xylitol rich environment.  This is how it protects the teeth from tooth decay. With Xylitol, the acid attack that would otherwise last for over half an hour is stopped. The bacteria in the mouth that are causing cavities are unable to digest xylitol, their growth is greatly reduced. The number of acid producing bacteria may decrease by as much as 90%. No acid is formed because the pH of saliva and plaque does not fall. After taking xylitol, the bacteria do not stick well on the surface of the teeth and as a result, the amount of plaque decreases. Many people are not aware of this ancillary benefit because such a claim makes xylitol into a drug. This crosses a legal boundary not allowed by the Food and Drug Administration.

It has been recommended that you chew a piece of xylitol gum after every meal or snack to gain maximum benefit to your teeth. Xylitol is recommended by dentists and physicians worldwide as a sweetener for anyone concerned with dental health, upper respiratory health, and sugar consumption, in general.

Can Xylitol Repair Damage to Enamel Too?

Research has also shown that the use of xylitol helps repair damage to the enamel. Saliva protects the mouth and teeth. Stimulated saliva in particular contains all the components needed to repair early tooth cavities. If sugar is only taken a couple of times a day, the saliva can do the job alone. But most people take sugar so often that the mouth’s own defensive tools are not enough.

Saliva that has xylitol is more alkaline than saliva stimulated by other sugar products. After taking xylitol products, the concentration of basic amino acids and ammonia in saliva and plaque may rise, and plaque pH rises as well. When pH is above 7, calcium and phosphate salts in saliva start to move into those parts of enamel that are weak. Therefore, soft, calcium deficient enamel sites begin to harden again.

Xylitol Conclusion

Xylitol can help maintain a healthy oral environment, but does not replace dental hygiene!

Xylitol can be an excellent adjunct to normal brushing and flossing coupled with regular dental visits and professional cleanings. The best part is it is quite easy to incorporate xylitol into your daily routine.