Should you use toothpaste with or without fluoride? At blue®m, we get asked this on a regular basis, and we understand the confusion. And because we want to be as open and transparent as possible when it comes to fluoride and why we advise using toothpaste without fluoride, we’ve asked our oral care expert to weigh in.
Toxicity and corrosive effect
There are several reasons why some people prefer not to use fluoride, the most important being its toxic effect. Everyone knows that an overdose of fluoride is toxic (think of the warnings on toothpaste for kids), but even in small quantities, the use of fluoride can cause problems over time. When you brush your teeth, fluoride is not only absorbed by the enamel of the teeth, but it also enters the bloodstream through the oral mucosa. This can exacerbate osteoporosis, and dialysis patients also need to be careful with fluoride use. Another reason to avoid fluoride relates to people with dental implants. Most implants are made with titanium, and research has shown that fluoride reacts to the titanium surface layer in implants. This can corrode and damage your implant. Do you have dental implants? If so, you’re better off brushing with toothpaste that contains no fluoride to avoid this corrosive effect.
Protection against cavities
To determine whether or not to use fluoride, it’s good to know what fluoride actually does. Fluoride strengthens the enamel, making it less receptive to acids, and it promotes the recovery of surface cavities. If you have a high caries susceptibility (i.e. many cavities), brushing with fluoride toothpaste can be beneficial.
Good oral hygiene is key
However, in order to prevent the formation of cavities, maintaining good oral hygiene is the best method. It is also important to consume as few sugars and carbohydrates as possible (which are converted into sugars). The bacteria that cause cavities feed on sugars. When little sugars are consumed, cavities are less likely to form.
Oxygen and xylitol are effective and nourishing
It’s not necessary to use fluoride when you maintain good oral hygiene and a healthy, low-sugar diet that provides the body with sufficient vitamins and minerals. That said, it’s still wise to use oral hygiene products with nourishing ingredients like active oxygen and xylitol. This helps keep the mouth in optimal condition. To consider another effect of fluoride, let’s look at the reversal of surface cavities. Xylitol also has a remineralizing (healing) effect on beginning cavities because it stimulates salivation. In addition, it creates a protective layer around your teeth that repels new plaque.
blue®m advice on fluoride
For years, Peter Blijdorp, our founding father, has been advising people to brush without fluoride, but rather using active oxygen, xylitol, lactoferrin, and raw organic honey. The synergetic effect of these ingredients means that fluoride isn’t necessary. Moreover, these ingredients care for both the hard and soft tissues in the mouth and aren’t harmful to the body. Of course, it is important to choose oral care products that you’re comfortable with and that fit your lifestyle. Just make sure that if you decide to avoid fluoride, that you use
products that contain substitute and, more importantly, active ingredients.
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The ambitious Denise is oral health adviser at blue®m. After having gained extensive experience in biological dentistry, she started studying Oral Hygiene. Her passion is to help people towards optimal oral health.