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As we mentioned in Monday’s blog, choices between toothpastes is not always easy. One of the most difficult aspects of the selection process is the presence of several different options for specialty treatment from your toothpaste. Here at the Lakeway Center for Cosmetic and Family Dentistry we’ve taken a look at some of the most common of these options and their uses:

Specialty Toothpaste Types

  • Tartar Control — If a toothpaste brand advertises itself as “tartar control,” it likely contains an active ingredient such as pyrophosphate — a chemical compound that has been found to be effective in the prevention of tartar buildup on the teeth. Though these toothpastes cannot remove tartar (that will require a trip to a dental professional) studies have shown that these toothpastes can reduce tartar formation by one-third in tests.
  • Whitening — A common misconception when it comes to whitening toothpastes, is that they contain bleach that will help whiten your teeth. While these toothpastes may contain chemicals that can remove insignificant stains, these toothpastes do not generally whiten teeth. When compared with dentist-prescribed teeth whitening treatments, tooth whitening toothpaste is pretty weak. However, some professionals believe that it can be a way of maintaining white teeth after a bleaching procedure.
  • Sensitive Teeth — For some people, receding gums or sensitive teeth may become a problem as they grow older or develop dental disorders such as grinding. In these cases, brushing may be a uncomfortable or painful experience. Toothpastes designed for sensitive teeth usually contain chemical agents that work to desensitize the teeth and gums while brushing. Such a toothpaste can be greatly beneficial to a person suffering from sensitive teeth, allowing them to brush as normal.
  • With Baking Soda/Peroxide — While strolling through dental care aisle of your local grocery store, you might find a brand that advertises itself as containing baking soda or peroxide. Neither of these ingredients have scientifically proven benefits for dental health, but some consumers opt for them because many feel they are less abrasive than ordinary toothpastes, and use of these ingredients can make a user’s mouth “feel cleaner” after brushing.

When considering any of the above toothpastes, also consider Part 1 of this guide which contains more general guidelines for picking a toothpaste. Please feel free to contact Lakeway Center for Cosmetic & Family Dentistry if you have any further questions surrounding toothpaste choice or would like to schedule an appointment.