Although toothpaste has seen some changes over the years, the need for it hasn’t. Toothpaste dates back to the ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans. People were also using toothpaste in India and China around 500 BC. People used it to clean their teeth and gums and improve their breath.
In early times, toothpaste was made of animal hooves, ash, charcoal, oyster shells eggshells and even bark! The Chinese added ingredients like ginseng, mint and salt. As time wore on, people continued to use charcoal, but also experimented with chalk. Until about 1850, most tooth cleaners were in the form of powders, but that would eventually give way to creams. Soap was a key ingredient for many years, and fluoride would not make an appearance until around 1914.
Today, your toothpaste has a number of ingredients. Fluoride is one of them, but they also contain a humectant to keep it from drying out and becoming gummy, and a detergent which is what makes it foam in your mouth to help you reach all of your teeth. It also contains a thickening agent to keep it on the brush, and a little bit of flavoring for well, you know, flavor. Some varieties contain ingredients to whiten your teeth, freshen your breath, or to fight plaque or gum disease.
What toothpaste should you use? Well, our dentist, Dr. John J. Andre can tell you that, based on your needs. To find out what toothpaste is best for you, call (540) 967-0777 to make an appointment in Louisa, Virginia. We’re looking forward to seeing your bright smile soon!