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Tooth Care Products

Q: Hey doc, Every time I go to the store it seems like I see more and more different kinds of toothpaste and toothbrushes. I get a toothbrush and sometimes toothpaste at my check-ups, but I want to make sure I’m using the right stuff. Can you help sort this out for me?

A: Sure, I would be glad to help. It seems like every time I go to the store I’m faced with almost a full isle of products to clean my teeth. During the holiday season it becomes almost dizzying with all the products out there to tempt us into buying something new or different.

There are toothpastes for elderly people, children and babies. Sensitive, anti-aging and whitening, it’s all out there. There are even toothbrushes for children that play music and mouth rinses that change color.

So how do you decide? Well keep in mind that most of that stuff is a gimmick in order to entice us to open our wallets and spend some money. Each year the array of singing, color changing, anti-aging and rejuvenating products grow making it even more difficult to know what is what.

Brushing your teeth for approximately two minutes in the morning an evening is what cleans the teeth and removes plaque. The toothbrush should say soft on the package. Soft bristles allow plaque to be more easily swept away from the surface of the tooth. The active ingredients in most toothpaste are the same. It’s the other ingredients that change.

You don’t need peroxide or baking soda or lavender or something that changes colors. So really, plain toothpaste is fine. If you have a special circumstance your dentist may recommend another product that he or she feels may benefit you.

Although, for most people the simple action of brushing with a soft toothbrush and regular toothpaste twice per day is enough.