Fluoride or Fluoride Free Toothpaste
By Joshua Ng (Pharmacist, Caring Pharmacy) | Malaysia | Thu Jul 19, 2018 4:32pm
Fluoride-free toothpaste is now becoming a trend in Malaysia. These toothpaste brands come from Europe, New Zealand and Australia. Many might wonder what’s the deal with fluoride-free versus fluoride toothpaste. This article surmises the debate out there when choosing between fluoride and fluoride-free toothpaste.
- Fluoride is clinically proven to strengthen tooth enamel1, 2
- Reduce tooth decay and cavities significantly since its discovery1
- Safe in small amounts when used topically2
- Cases of toxicity are very rare2
- European Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (EAPD) recommends the use of fluoride toothpaste to everyone including pregnant women and children2
- Ministry of Health Malaysia recommends the use of fluoride toothpaste for brushing teeth3
- Fear of overexposure to fluoride - Tap water in Malaysia has already a fluoride concentration of 0.4 – 0.6mg/L.4
- Overexposure to fluoride may lead to dental fluorosis (a form of enamel deformation)2
- Overdose of fluoride associated with toxicity symptoms ranging from nausea, weakness to even muscle paralysis2
- Fluoride free toothpaste such as “Red Seal” contain no artificial colors, harsh chemicals and are all natural ingredients and therefore very safe
- Consider rather the needs of yourself and your family before choosing, i.e. teeth whitening, gum care, kids’ toothpaste, sensitive teeth and chemical free.
- Avoid the following preservative ingredients in toothpaste: Triclosan5 and parabens6
- For children, try to avoid fluoride toothpaste as they have a habit of swallowing toothpaste
- Choose a high quality product that is also safe as you’re putting it into your mouth about 700 times a year
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