The key to taking care of your oral health? Start as early as possible. Prevention means less complications later on, and when it comes to dental health, we all want to protect our teeth from any potential issues.
Everyone can benefit from switching to a natural toothpaste, including toddlers. There are quite a few reasons why, but if you take nothing else away just remember that natural toothpastes are overall safer. Here you can find some of the most important reasons to make the switch and our recommendations for the whole family.
Natural toothpaste is more effective
Natural toothpaste has been proven to be 100% more effective for teeth cleaning. It’s not very well known that so many of the popular toothpastes you see in commercials or at the store actually contain a lot of harmful ingredients. Most of those harmful ingredients are included solely for taste purposes.
Sure, we don’t want to have to use a toothpaste that doesn’t taste great. However, for toddlers who are still developing, they may not be able to spit out their toothpaste when brushing. Therefore, they may be more inclined to swallow toothpaste that is filled with tasty, artificial ingredients.
It’s tricky because toddlers may not be interested in brushing in the first place if their toothpaste tastes bad. But, if it’s too sweet and good, they are more likely to swallow it, which just increases their exposure to toxicity, and we don’t want that.
How exactly is natural toothpaste more effective? Because it’s made with all-natural ingredients. Herbs and fresh mint are popular alternatives to artificial ingredients. They come with their own natural aroma and taste! These ingredients work to naturally freshen your breath.
There are some specific harmful ingredients you will want to watch out for, though, even if your toothpaste claims to be natural. The two big ones are propylene glycol and sodium lauryl sulfate. Propylene glycol is usually not found in natural toothpaste, but like we said, just watch out for this ingredient in any toothpaste -- it’s an active ingredient in anti-freezes, makeup, and mouthwash. Sodium lauryl sulfate can cause tears or canker sores. While not toxic (and while it is made from natural ingredients), it’s probably better to just avoid natural toothpastes with this ingredient and the minor complications that may come with it.
Other ingredients to use with caution include:
- Sodium lauroyl sarcosinate
- Sodium hydroxymethylglycinate
These ingredients are generally safe, but there are varying opinions on many of them in terms of being safe for children -- consult with a dentist to be sure. All in all, make sure to always take a quick look at the ingredients. We're looking for natural and fresh ingredients here!
You may recognize fluoride from the above list of cautionary ingredients. Fluoride is a natural element of the Earth, and when combined with other elements, they work together to fight cavities. Fluoride does protect your teeth, but only if it is the proper amount.
A bit of a controversial ingredient in natural toothpastes, fluoride is typically regarded as something that strengthens tooth enamel. While that may be true for adults, it is not true for children. It can actually be very dangerous for toddlers to have too much fluoride because they are susceptible to fluorosis, while adults are not.
Fluorosis poses risk only for developing teeth. As we now know, if children like the taste of toothpaste they’re more likely to swallow it, and less likely to be able to spit it out -- simply because they are still in the process of developing that skill. That means they would be swallowing extra fluoride, which may be dangerous. In this case you’ll want to consider a natural, fluoride-free toothpaste.
While fluorosis is not very noticeable or painful, it never hurts to take preventative steps. There are plenty of toothpastes out there that taste good and are made with natural ingredients, like herbs or mint -- you will definitely find one that your child will love, and it will make brushing fun!
Reduce toxic exposure
There are many things we do or use every day that could potentially expose us to toxic chemicals. It’s important to eliminate chances of that exposure where possible, and the best place to start is with products you are putting in or on your body. That includes toothpaste!
Natural toothpastes reduce potential exposure to toxins. They also boost your oral health routine in a great way. All the natural ingredients work together so well -- ingredients from the Earth are powerful! Many of the plant-based ingredients we have mentioned successfully fight off germs and odor-causing bacterias.
If you’re ready to make the switch, you need some good recommendations. Here are some of our top picks:
- Jack N’ Jill Natural Toothpaste
- Earth’s Best
- Toms’ of Maine
- Hello Products
Each of these (and many more options where these came from) are toothpastes that you can feel good about your child using. They’re all natural, and some of them are even organic, too. There are many options for fun flavors, and as you can see some of this packaging will really brighten up your bathroom, hopefully making brushing exciting for kids!
With these toothpastes, you won’t need to worry quite as much about fluorosis, cavities from sugar-filled artificial flavorings, or any serious oral health issues later on. While natural toothpastes are a great choice for toddlers, they are a great choice for the whole family, too. Take a step towards a healthier and safer dental health routine today!