How To Choose The Right Toothpaste For Optimum Oral Health

Dr. Christopher Li Etobicoke - Li Family Dental

By Dr. Christopher Li

October 4, 2022

brushing, choosing the right toothpaste, oral care

Toothpaste is a lot more than that tasty substance you place on your toothbrush each day before you brush your teeth. The ingredients are specially formulated to provide a specific result, and some ingredients are a must if you hope to achieve optimum oral health. Choosing the right toothpaste can be a complex task, but it doesn’t have to be, especially if you take the time to learn as much as you can about using the right toothpaste for your needs as part of your preventative dental care routine. Keep reading to find out how to choose the right toothpaste to get the best possible results.

Questions To Ask Before Choosing The Right Toothpaste


Before you get to the business of choosing a toothpaste, it’s a good idea to ask yourself some questions to clear away any confusion, so you’re on track to get the right toothpaste for your needs. Here are some questions that will help point you in the right direction:

Does it have Canadian Dental Association approval?

In Canada, you should look for the Canadian Dental Association seal of approval on any toothpaste you want to buy and bring into your home for your family.

Does the toothpaste contain fluoride?

Fluoride provides a range of benefits that help protect your teeth and prevent many serious dental issues, so it’s important to only select toothpaste that contains fluoride.

What results do you want from your toothpaste?

Naturally, you want to clean your teeth, but there are many different types of toothpaste out there that have different objectives. You may want a toothpaste for tartar control, gingivitis control, sensitivity, or tooth whitening. If you have any specific issues that could be helped with a specific type of toothpaste, make sure that’s part of your search.

What are the toothpaste ingredients?

The ingredients in your toothpaste are also important. Many of them may not make sense to you, but some common ingredients that you can look for include:

  • Sodium lauryl sulfate
  • Stannous fluoride
  • Triclosan
  • Xylitol

Do the taste and texture appeal to you?

Taste and texture play important roles when it comes to brushing frequency. This is especially true with children, but even adults can be turned off of regular toothbrushing if their toothpaste doesn’t taste good or the texture is unpleasant.

Why Fluoride Is Important


Fluoride is a mineral that naturally occurs in a variety of areas, including rocks, soil, water, and even in certain foods. Dentists recommend using fluoride toothpaste because it is an effective part of an overall dental health routine. When you use fluoride toothpaste, it will help to strengthen tooth enamel by slowing the acids that are produced by plaque and protecting against tooth decay.

Fluoride can also help protect against demineralization that occurs when sugar and bacteria are combined on your tooth surface. Fluoride toothpaste can also help promote remineralization, delivering calcium and phosphate ions to your teeth. Fluoride can pose serious health risks if it’s ingested in high quantities, but for use in toothpaste where it’s not swallowed, it is generally considered safe.

What If My Water Has Fluoride?


If you live in an area that adds fluoride to the municipal water supply, does that mean you don’t have to purchase fluoride toothpaste? Even if you have fluoride in your water, it’s a good idea to buy fluoride toothpaste so you get the maximum amount of benefit. Fluoride in the water is added at very low levels, and you won’t get too much if you brush your teeth with fluoride toothpaste in addition to drinking fluoridated water.

How To Choose The Right Toothpaste For Sensitive Teeth


Toothpaste for sensitive teeth is quite popular, as many people have tooth sensitivity caused by a range of different factors. Sometimes it’s food or beverages that are too cold, sometimes it’s heat, sometimes it’s sugar, and sometimes it’s a combination. If you’ve considered using a toothpaste that’s specifically designed for sensitive teeth, you’ll probably get some relief. Ingredients such as stannous fluoride, potassium nitrate, and strontium chloride work to calm the nerves in your teeth and relieve sensitivity. It may take several days or even weeks to get the relief you’re looking for, but most commercial sensitive teeth toothpaste brands can help. Just remember that you have to keep using the toothpaste to get the results you want.

Should You Try Tooth Powder?


Tooth powder is a product that more and more people are turning to as an alternative to traditional toothpaste. In essence, this is just powdered toothpaste and has similar ingredients to regular toothpaste, only they’ve been mixed and dried and made into a powdered form. Sometimes the powder is further processed into tablets to make them easier to use, but the ingredients are still the same. If you’re thinking of trying tooth powder instead of regular toothpaste, make sure you look for one that has fluoride, so you don’t miss out on any of its benefits. The process is relatively simple, combining the powder and water on your brush and then brushing your teeth like you normally do.

Does It Matter What Toothpaste You Use?

As you can see, there’s a lot that goes into choosing the right toothpaste for your teeth and your lifestyle. Not every piece of information you’ll hear is 100% accurate, so it’s always a good idea to ask your dentist if you’re thinking of switching from your regular toothpaste. And whichever type of toothpaste you end up choosing, remember that brushing your teeth consistently and with the proper technique is crucial to keep your teeth clean and healthy at all times.

If you have any questions about your dental health, including which type of toothpaste is best for you, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us so we can provide you with the guidance you need.

For more guidance on how to choose the right toothpaste, give us a call at 416-232-2033 or request an appointment by clicking here.


Dr. Christopher Li

About the author

Doctor Christopher Li, DDS
Dr. Chris, as he is affectionately known, is a licensed dentist with over 20 years experience. His caring personality makes even the most tentative person at ease. Patients are constantly commenting about how Dr. Chris is incredible at delivering pain-free freezing, and how he has an amazing chair-side manner.  Dr. Chris loves sharing information with his patients and everyone who has teeth about how to care for their teeth, avoid tooth decay, and the treatments available to help them overcome their tooth pain or other dental issues so they can enjoy life and food to its fullest!

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