The Dirty Chemicals Lurking in Toothpaste

Mar, 21, 2021

Once deciding to avoid chemicals, we usually think about household cleaners, body products and children’s toys; but few ever pay attention to the chemicals we put into our mouths when we brush our teeth. I already talked about why you should trade your plastic tooth brush for a compostable bamboo ones, so let’s focus on toothpaste.

Most common toothpastes contain harsh chemicals, additives, detergents, dyes — even sweeteners. They can be harmful to your teeth, your overall health and the environment. Certain ingredients such as triclosan and fluoride found in toothpaste can bioaccumulate in the environment, affecting ecosystems and harming wildlife.Although you spitout most of the toothpaste, chemicals do find their way into your blood stream because your mouth is one of the most absorbent parts pf your body.

  • Chemicals found in mainstream toothpaste are listed here:
  • Triclosan — Hormone disrupting chemicals
  • Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) —an additive that allows products to foam. It has been linked to cancer, neurotoxicity, organ toxicity, skin irritation and endocrine disruption
  • Diethanolamine (DEA) — Linked to cancer
  • Microbeads — Oh, these beads of plastic not only contain hormone disruptors, but they also cause lots of problems in our waters and oceans.
  • Titanium Dioxide (TiO2) —carcinogenic and linked to cancer
  • Parabens — contain hormone-disrupting chemicals and has been linked to infertility, thyroid issues and cancer

The best brand sold in stores are:

Desert Essence Toothpaste

Dr. Bronners

Weleda: Natural Salt Toothpaste

Kiss My Face

Nature’s Gate Natural Toothpaste

The Dirt – All Natural Tooth Powder(my favorite)

Primal Life: Dirty Mouth Organic Toothpowder

So, there are lots of options that have way fewer chemicals on the market. Another option is to make your own toothpaste. It’s easy and cheap. And you probably havemost ingredients at home or can easily buy them. All good reasons! This recipe takes about two minutes to make.

Essential oils for oral care:

Cinnamon—Contains antifungal, antibacterial properties

Spearmint oil— Astrong antiseptic, eliminating germs and helping heal any wounds

Thieves oilGood for gingivitis;helps with bad breath; kills bacteria; and reduces swelling of inflamed gums

Mix everything until you have a paste. Add more water if it seems too dry. You can keep this toothpaste in an airtight mason jar.

Fredrika Syren

Fredrika Syren is an environmental activist and writer. In 2016, she founded the website Green-Mom.com where she shared her family’s journey of living zero waste. She lives in San Diego, California with her husband James and their children Bella, Noah, and Liam. Fredrika and her family were recently featured in the documentary Zero Time to Waste. Fredrika is also the author of Zero Waste for Families - A Practical Guidebook (which you can buy on this site)

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