All About Toothpaste

Long before anyone ever heard of Crest or Colgate, people used basic ingredients to clean their teeth. Cue the toothpaste industry, which came up with millions of different dental applications, all designed with a single purpose – to clean teeth! Of course, the path to today’s plethora of paste preparations is a long and storied one. 

Early Toothpaste

Ancient Egyptians created a paste from soot, gum Arabic, and water. The results were likely a little more abrasive than those found in modern toothpaste, but it did the trick. The Greeks and Romans resorted to crushed bones and oyster shells. So, their concoctions were no less harsh than those of the Egyptians. Ancient China took a softer approach, turning to herbal mints, salt, and ginseng. 

Toothpaste in the 1800’s

People used to add soap to their toothpaste. Also consider that this was when most soaps were made from lye. Other common ingredients of the day featured chalk, charcoal, and areca nut (which was a fruit found in tropical climates). 

1900’s Toothpaste

This was the period when fluoride became all the rage. Toothpaste manufacturers came up with a concoction that was made to prevent plaque buildup and tooth decay. Without soap, they were able to create a smooth paste, using sodium lauryl sulfate, which remains an ingredient today! 

Modern Toothpaste

Today, there is a type of toothpaste for virtually anything and everything that ails you. If you want white teeth, choose a whitening toothpaste. If you want something more natural, turn to products like Tom’s Toothpaste or use baking soda. You could also select your toothpaste based on the type of container it comes in, the way it is flavored or the price point. Which one is the best? Although dentists do not agree on one paste, we do concur that the best toothpaste is the one that you will use every day. And no matter the toothpaste you select, flossing remains the most important tool in your arsenal for gum and dental health. So, floss your teeth regularly, see your dentist at least twice a year, and brush your teeth. For the record, we recommend skipping the crushed bones. A simple toothpaste-covered toothbrush works well. 

About Dr. Fred Wong of Blue Ocean Dentistry in Glendora

Dr. Fred Wong and the staff at Blue Ocean Dentistry use the latest available dental treatments, equipment, and materials – all of which make a marked difference in our patients’ experiences. We are committed to helping our patients achieve optimal dental health. We creatively combine dental science and artistry — which can literally redesign your smile. Since even a subtle change in your smile will help you to project self-confidence and high self-esteem, we love helping you feel good about yourself. We deliver the finest dental care at the most reasonable cost and accept most dental insurance plans as well as CareCredit. For more about the dental treatment plans we offer or to schedule an appointment, call today (626) 852-6999.