By Chere Di Boscio
Beware! There are toxins in your toothpaste!
Most Eluxe readers will now be aware of the dangerous chemicals lurking in conventional toothpastes: from fluoride and triclosan to sodium laureth sulphate and artificial sweeteners, heavy chemicals in toothpastes can cause everything from thyroid problems and arthritis to liver disease and cancer. A recent study of Colgate Total toothpastes just revealed that there are indeed cancer-causing agents in that brand, and it has been proven that brands with microbeads can actually cause gum disease.
In short, off-the-shelf toothpastes should be off your bathroom shelf forever!
Luckily, plenty of hard-working, good-tasting alternatives exist! They may take some getting used to in terms of their lack of foam and uber-sweetness (caused in normal toothpastes by harmful chemicals like saccharin), but the long term results are well worth it–these natural toothpastes are sometimes even more effective than chemical ones!
Here’s our list of the Top 10 Natural Toothpastes. Don’t worry if these aren’t stocked in your local drugstore or pharmacy; your can buy all of these easily online–just click the links in the titles.
This certified organic toothpaste is great for anyone with delicate teeth and gums. Even if kids swallow it, it’s 100% non-toxic, free of all harmful chemicals, and removes plaque and reduces bacterial growth. Natural mint oils leave a fresh flavour, meaning this toothpaste is as close to the conventional ones that you can get.
This natural organic banana toothpaste is aimed at kids 6 months plus, but hey–you may like it too! It has a high safety rating from on EWG‘s Skin Deep – it’s rated the safest kids toothpaste on the market. In fact, it’s the only kid’s toothpaste to be rated at a zero health risk for children. It is sweet (thanks to Xylitol), safe to swallow, fluoride free, sugar free, SLS free, with no added colours, preservatives or mint (which kids sometimes dislike).
Natural care for healthy teeth comes with sea salt and minerals, as well as propolis and echinacea extract. Free of all nasties, the calcium carbonate and silicic acid ensure thorough removal of plaque. Of course, regular brushing of the teeth removes bacterial plaque, which is mainly responsible for caries, paradentosis and tartar. With sea salt and minerals, in addition to extracts of arnica, myrrh and yarrow, this toothpaste ensures a healthy bacterial flora in the mouth.
Ingredients here include soothing Aloe Vera; Silica, a natural mineral used to help keep teeth clean, helping to prevent cavities and for natural whitening; Co-enzyme Q10, Escin (a component from Horse Chestnut seed) and Tea Tree Oil, nature’s own antiseptic for healthy gums; Chitosan to attack bacteria; plus Peppermint oil and Menthol for that great fresh minty taste. A best-seller, and frankly, one of our favourites!
Peppermint oil provides a powerful burst of fresh flavour, and and leaves your breath fresh for hours. The three natural tooth whiteners ensure coffee and wine stains disappear, but that being said, there are no harsh abrasives. As an added bonus, the naturally anti-bacterial Perilla Seed Extract helps prevent tartar build up.
This contains natural silica, which cleanses thoroughly yet gently, easing sensitivities and inflammation. Regular use helps reduce the build up of plaque. This gel formulation with soothing chamomile is especially gentle on tooth enamel and delicate gums, whilst refreshing peppermint and spearmint oils keep breath fresh.
This toothpaste offers natural protection for healthy gums and whiter teeth, and of course the formula is fluouride free, SLS free and ensures protection for healthy gums and whiter teeth. Tea tree oil is an acquired taste, but it is a powerful, natural anti-bacterial agent.
Regular brushing with Dr Organic Aloe Vera Toothpaste provides a whitening, anti-cavity and soothing action and still a great minty taste. This triple action toothpaste is formulated with Organic Aloe Vera, Silica, Icelandic Moss, Horse Chestnut and Tea Tree oil to leave your mouth bacteria free and sweetly scented.
A great first time natural toothpaste! The finely ground chalk base provides a gentle abrasive to clean and shine the teeth without damaging the enamel. It is peppermint free and is therefore especially good for users of homeopathic medicines. Extracts of Calendula and Myrrh both provide antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and healing properties for oral hygiene, and the gently pleasant fennel flavour makes this a good choice for first time users of natural toothpastes.
Some people love this one–like, obsessively–and some hate it. Why? Obviously because of the salty flavour. This Salt Toothpaste was originally developed in consultation with doctors and dentists, and the rather unique result is an effective cleansing action that is pH balanced. Due to the osmotic action of the concentrated salt solutions, saliva flow is increased, assisting in the washing away of decay-producing residues, and reducing the formation of tartar, the evil forerunner of plaque that leads to nasty caries. Salt Toothpaste neutralises caries-promoting acids, particularly after meals–just half an hour after cleansing the teeth, the normal pH balance of the mouth is restored, no matter how much sugar and acidic food you’ve eaten. This is holistic mouthcare at its best!
…And Don’t Forget Your Mouthwash!
Mouthwash is normally just as full of nasty, toxic chemicals as toothpaste.
If you use alcohol-containing mouthwashes over a long period, this is sure to dry out your mouth and change its natural pH, increasing your risk of mouth and throat cancers. If a mouthwash contains a harsh detergent like cocamidopropyl betaine, this makes it even worse.
Mouthwashes also commonly contain fluoride, a systemic poison, and sorbitol or saccharin, which causes bladder cancer in animals. Additionally, there are synthetic colours, aromas and flavourings, which are basically perfumes that only temporarily hide foul odours. As they are composed of volatile solvents, they can also alter the basic flora of the mouth in the same way as alcohol and may cause dermatitis around the mouth. Combinations of several strong flavourings may be particularly irritating, and methyl salicylate (oil of wintergreen), eucalyptol (oil of eucalyptus) and thymol – even if they are naturally derived – are also highly toxic. Just 10ml of methyl salicylate can poison a child; 30ml can poison an adult.
Make sure your mouthwash is pure, like Organii, which is based on Aloe Vera and contains only natural ingredients. We love the Citrus flavour, which has a fruity, zesty kick and is gently refreshing.