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All around the www, they say: "modern toothpaste contains toxic/dangerous ingredients." But have manufacturers of modern toothpaste mastered this, and have they formulas in which these dangerous ingredients can't do harm? In other words: are these ingredients in so small amounts in there so that they can't be harmful?

edit: some of the ingredients contained in modern toothpaste that cause the greatest concern for me are: fluoride, triclosan, SLS, glycerin, artificial color…

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    We are looking for simplicity. This is currently too broad. What is "modern toothpaste"? Please update your question to either include links to specific "formulas"/ingredients, or link to one or two sites that are included in the group "all around www". – LаngLаngС Nov 26 '17 at 13:27
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    Would you mind focusing on one of the ingredients? Otherwise that blows all proportions – Narusan Nov 27 '17 at 12:28
  • I can't, because i can't say, ok, this one is more toxic then other, and then choose it. – user12025 Nov 27 '17 at 21:43
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    All around the www they say the earth is flat, vaccines cause autism, big corporations are hiding the cure for cancer, and Obama was born in Kenya. You might want to be more selective about what you read. Critical thinking skills are important. – Carey Gregory Nov 29 '17 at 2:08
  • +1 to @CareyGregory . Well said! – Taylor Nov 30 '17 at 18:12
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No. As asked "modern toothpaste" is very good for you. "Good" defined here as: Modern toothpaste is designed to help you keep a happy smile into old age with your natural teeth. It should help to keep your teeth, and everything in your mouth, really, clean, fresh and healthy.

This is the short answer. And that is a bit too simplistic, alas. The longer answer is slightly more complicated and has the following foreword:
A product that is approved by a nation-wide body of control might indeed be good for most people or at least contain ingredients considered safe or not known to cause general harm. But there are indeed some general bad apples out there on the market.

This is a statement for the general populace and individual results may differ because of allergies, over-reactions or even counter indications on the medical side, taste and preference on the personal side. The nice thing about that is that you still have a choice between many products on the market.

Both 'natural' and lets call them 'industrial' toothpastes come in a staggering variety. Both may contain questionable substances and they all vary on effectiveness.

"All around the WWW": it is usually a bad idea to listen to or read what every quack out there has to say about his or her ideas of toxicity. The author of this answer may be a passionate quack! So think for yourself and educate yourself.

The 'right' amount of fluoride will kill you, the right amount of 'natural' substances will kill you also. The right amount of fluoride (without scare quotes: the optimal amount of fluoride, coincidently most of the time the amount in toothpastes) will strengthen your teeth and lessen the incidence of tooth decay. Avoiding it completely is a personal choice – and may very well be not the best choice.

Your wants: Things likely to look for in a toothpaste:

Your maybes: Things likely to be included and probably not of concern either way or in a grey zone:

  • glycerin and alcohol
  • chlorhexidine (while great against bacteria and preventing plaque: may stain teeth, causes other problems in your mouth, severly alters taste perception)

Your Unwanted: Things very likely to avoid:

  • sodium lauryl sulfate ("SLS", foaming irritant)
    (Please excuse the personal advice and anecdotal experience report by the authors of this answer: Does it cause ulcers? – It does for sure!)
  • abrasive materials (use the RDA value of a product as guideline: >100 is too much, aim for <60)
  • acids and other sugars or sweeteners than xylitol or stevia (sorbitol, aspartame etc.) Note that this doesn't say aspartame e.g. is dangerous, just that there are better options.
  • triclosan (very questionable ingredient all around if not strictly prescribed, does help against plaque and gingivitis, but causes a whole lot of problems)
  • plastic micro beads (mostly because of the environment, less harmful immediately to the consumer)
  • parabenes: steeply raising concerns over their effect as xeno-estrogens, although in toothpaste their contribution to unwanted effects seems minimal.
  • strange artificial colours (first: because they are completely unnecessary except to make you buy the stuff, second: most beneficial ingredients have their own colour – and if not, what's wrong with white?)

That list is not exhaustive. Questinable materials often found in so-called 'natural toothpaste' is not covered. (and there are lots!) The list above plant extracts above shows: even industrial toothpastes make use of natural components. But those ingredients may include things like green tea extract (generally well tolerated) or tea-tree oil (often not well tolerated and possible allergen). These should be checked especially thoroughly, for allergies, side effects etc. Potential hazards for any ingredient have to be weighed for their beneficial effects and especially the intended use and application considered: do not swallow the pastes! Even the xylitol listed as very beneficial and of very low concern will cause upset stomach and diarrhea when ingested in sufficient quantity.

In general: Look for a toothpaste that meets these criteria, and your tastes and preferences. Try them out. If you tolerate the ingredients: Then go to your dentist and ask him about his opinion about your preferred choice(s).


Things listed here and things not listed here but contained in a toothpaste may require you to check yourself:

  • but don't just google it, and stop there on the first hit, go for quality references
  • check it on wikipedia
  • check it on a consumer rights webpage (example HealthEU)
  • check it on drugs.com
  • check it on pubchem
  • check it on the skindeep database
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  • +1: Might want to point out that the quantities of Xylitol need to be significantly higher than what one would normally „consume“ to reliably be a cause of diarrhoea. I can’t find the source, but the number 3g is stuck in my head for some reason or another... – Narusan Nov 30 '17 at 14:17
  • @Narusan I think it is even higher, but numbers differ too much. This? I am now quite resistant to it ;) ? – LаngLаngС Nov 30 '17 at 14:26
  • Well, that source gives a rough estimate. 30g (80kg weight as reference) is like the Xylitol in two packages of toothpaste. I was wrong by factor 10. A bit off. – Narusan Nov 30 '17 at 14:28
  • (i would) +1, (but i have 14 rep), after reading all answers, i can only give, up vote for huge effort. – user12025 Dec 5 '17 at 12:50
  • @user12025 If you "accept" an answer, i.e. check the checkmark next to it, you will gain 2 rep points… – LаngLаngС Dec 5 '17 at 13:00
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Hi I'll try to cover most topics in the subject and link sources efficiently and straight to the points. Including detox studies.

Modern toothpaste is madness for alot of reasons and the main one is that they keep using fluoride(not even it's natural form by the way,which is calcium fluoride and you very well could do without it)

(Main sources from the points below,unless I mentioned a different source comes from this website,which is a database of more than 500 studies about fluoride various health effects(organised by different health issues). http://fluoridealert.org/issues/health/ ------Check out brain effect , acute toxicity(dosage) ,etc);

EPA itself (but 2004,so it probably is reduced and some subtances banned,still looking for most recent) http://www.fluoridealert.org/wp-content/pesticides/f.source.food.inerts.htm

Vitamin D and aluminum absorption. And interraction of phosphate or phosphorique acid,iron ,zinc, and aluminium with fluoride. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1336426/pdf/cmaj00262-0018c.pdf

  • 2 All the harmfull effects far outweigth any benefits, which are actually very small and most often not very different that from people that don't use fluoride. Also no true meaningfull statistical correlationof cavities prevention or reduction from fluorated area compared to those that aren't. Cavities are caused by health and nutrition habits,enamel health,sugars and bacterias causing acidification and decay, poor dental hygiene substance choices, acids. If you take fluoride or not has little to no effect,except clogging the faulty area. statistical value in whole cities or country are almost the same % .

3 Substances are absorbed through skin and sublingual, but how fluoride % or quantity I did not find enough studies yet. Still compiling studies about how much in ingested from mouth/enamel

3.1 But this study,although in my opinion not the best(since it has a few flaws in it's clarity),is still good to prove the point even more since it has enamel absorption as well as sublingual, because sublingual is alredy proven to increase absorption of many drugs/substances . I will find more,but this one is interresting because in the application theres no open enamel/cavity area. http://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1742-6596/884/1/012054/pdf

" SDF that is applied in the buccal or sublingual mucosa will be rapidly absorbed into the reticulated vein located beneath the oral mucosa and then carried through the internal jugular and braciocephalic veins until it flows into the systemic circulation and is excreted through the urine [15]"

  • 4 Is supposed to be used topically to be "effective", but they still add it in water,weird huh(several MCG/L by the way ,sometimes even MG/L). - 4 In their own words it's supposed to be used topically to be "effective", but they still add it in water claiming it's beneficial for teeths,weird huh(several mcg or mg/l by the way). Source; http://fluoridealert.org/articles/50-reasons/ and alot more studies in there.

    • 4.1 Even dentist agree that acids destroy enamel and causes increase risk of cavity,yet tap water(and some toothpaste) contain alot of acidic components, including(depending on area) alot of places in the United States and some parts in Canada; they are Fluorosilicic Acid/Hydrofluorosilicic Acid/silicofluoride/silicofluoric acid. That seems very counter producting doesnt it and it also leaches city pipes either plastic or metal. The other form added to both sources is Sodium Fluoride.

    • 4.2 Then one might say it's for bone health, again benefits outweigth the risk and there is much more healthy substances for bone health/strength than ingesting such a strong poison(not mentioning other heavy metals and other toxins in tap water treated by water factories. One should never drink that, or at minimum have it filtered with 0.0001 micron absolute reverse osmosis,ideally which has a activated carbon filter(block) lower than 5 or 1 micron. Also plastic water bottles leach different bisphenols and phtalates,it's best to use ceramic or glass(and keep it cold in a cooler with bigger frozen bottles).

    • 5 It is definetely not a essential nutrient. http://fluoridealert.org/studies/essential-nutrient/

    • 6 It's (sometime) efficacity comes from clogging enamel/cavities/or sensitive nerve,but is more absorbed in the cases of open pathway causing toxicity. Cavities are healable naturally with good health habits(avoiding eroding) and bioactive supplementation and/or foods that will repair the tooth,combined with substances that inhibit cavity causing bacterias.
      6.1 And will over time cause fluorosis from teeth or bone exposure ,it's among one of the least harmfull effect.

-7 Other substances increase absorption of toxins from the skin/buccal. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3283952/ "It has been reported that anionic surfactants like sodium lauryl sulfate can penetrate and interact with the skin, producing large alterations in the barrier properties.[30] An additional mechanism for the penetration enhancement by SLS involves the hydrophobic interaction of the SLS alkyl chain with the skin structure which leaves the end sulfate group of the surfactant exposed, creating additional sites in the membrane. This results in the development of repulsive forces that separate the protein matrix, uncoil the filaments, and expose more water binding sites, hence increasing the hydration level of skin.[12] "

7.1 From same study ; "Anionic materials tend to permeate relatively poorly through stratum corneum upon short-time exposure but permeation increases with application time.[2] The alkyl sulfates can penetrate and destroy the integrity of the stratum corneum within hours of application.[18] "

7.2 --- So the long term repeated exposure in that sens ,and shampoo/soaps ,are worse,but oral absorption is very effective as well. --- Will find more studies, but it's very convincing.

8 -And there is so much more available studies to be looked at , so anyone saying fluoride should be used and telling others to take it and that theres no risk,are either very uninformed,biased and naive,to stay polite. Even if all forms of buccal absorption can(depending on fluoride content quantity) be small in one day(although small is relative to what dentist and "health agencies" call small ), on the medium,and especially on the long term it's not small at all,especially considering the acute toxicity dose of fluoride, and the fact that from skin/buccal absorption,alot of it goes straight through the blood or the brain.

9 *** Heres 2 studies about fluoride detox that show Tamarind Indicus food but mostly extract of seeds and pulp big potential for detox,including bones fluoride removal(second study). 9.1 Resumed study https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11840184 Full study https://www.nature.com/articles/1601287

9.2 Full study dogs and fluoride http://societyforfluorideresearch.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/Dog-and-fluorosis.pdf

9.3 The studies contradict themself in some nutrients absorption, but it can show fluoride interraction with those nutrients,especially magnesium. And can be due to various nutritional aspects of the test subjects, such as food and tap water anti-nutrients.

There is other substances that help in detox(more than just fluoride) but I don't have all the references, so I can't name them just yet,but they fairly easy to find.

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    What you've written here is a lot of hyperbolic opinion with the only support coming from non-credible sites with obvious agendas (poisonflouride.com and flouridealert.org -- you expect me to believe a word I find there?). The only credible sites you reference are articles that seem to have little or nothing to do with the claims you're making, which is a common tactic of alt-health scammers. -1 and if I could make it -10 I would. – Carey Gregory Dec 2 '17 at 1:53
  • Alot of the data is from official USA sources,of course they take alot of analysis info from studies from non government affiliated sources. Of course they have an agenda;expose fluoride nonsens and dangers,and at minimum give another view,that's their agenda. Exagerated claim,non credible? Like what and why exactly,what studies back your claim or refute without any doubts that it's not credible? I don't expect you to be anything but be open minded,especially not believe, at least read,instead of just saying your opinion without any proofs. You're sounding very much closed minded. – HerbalResearcher Dec 2 '17 at 2:34
  • -1 poisonalert.org, fluoridalert.org are not credible sources. I'd suggest removing them and focussing on what studies have found. Also, your answer only tangentially answers the question. – Narusan Dec 2 '17 at 6:11
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    I very much welcome a different outlook on the fluoride issue! And naturally, I completely disagree with this answer! The beneficial effects were discovered in cavity free people whose natural water supply was very fluoride rich causing fluorosis all over the place. The dosage is important. A credible source showing detrimental effects of F in TP dosing and at least parity in caries prevention from "natural" TP would go a long way to strengthen this case. Impress me in finding that one. – LаngLаngС Dec 2 '17 at 10:35
  • Narusan ,unless you prove why they're not credible, you can't suggest anything concerning removing. – HerbalResearcher Dec 3 '17 at 18:10

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