Tips for Safe and Effective Toothpaste Use

  • Abrasives remove plaque and daily deposits from the tooth.
  • However, toothpastes with higher abrasivity can cause irreversible damage, including enamel, porcelain, and root surface abrasion, especially if a lot is used on a regular basis.
  • Thus, it is important to know the Relative Dentin Abrasivity (RDA) of your toothpaste to ensure that it is safe and effective to use.
  • For example:
    • If you have porcelain veneers or crowns, you will want to avoid using whitening or tartar control toothpastes, which are especially abrasive. Over time, abrasive toothpastes dull the luster of your porcelain.
    • If you have recession and/or exposed root surfaces, these surfaces wear at a rate that is 8 times faster than enamel.
      Overtime, this abrasion can lead to tooth sensitivity.
  • Often, these abrasive toothpastes, which claim to whiten teeth and control tartar, are more expensive than their less abrasive alternatives.
  • Dr. McKay recommends using a pea-sized amount of toothpaste with an abrasive index of 60 or less. More toothpaste is not better.
  • Dr. McKay recommends that you first brush the inside of your lower back teeth, because that is the area that people often miss.
  • Where you start brushing gets the most wear, because the toothpaste is concentrated when you start brushing.
  • Dr. McKay recommends that you brush twice a day for two minutes each time and that you floss once per day.
  • Although the RDAs of the toothpastes listed below are subject to change, you may use the list to find the safest and most effective toothpaste for you today.
Legend
Very Low Abrasive — RDA 01 – 39
Low Abrasive — RDA 40 – 70
Medium Abrasive — RDA 71 – 99
High Abrasive — RDA 100 – 149
Harmfully Abrasive — RDA 150-260
RDAYour Toothpaste
80AIM
91Aquafresh Sensitive
113Aquafresh Whitening
81Amway Glister
117Arm & Hammer Advance White Gel
106Arm & Hammer Advance White Paste
70Arm & Hammer Advance White Sensitive
65Arm & Hammer Complete Care Plus Enamel Strengthening
54Arm & Hammer Complete Care Stain Defense
35Arm & Hammer Dental Care
168Arm & Hammer Dental Care PM Fresh Mint
48Arm & Hammer Dental Care Sensitive
42Arm & Hammer Metadent Advanced
42Arm & Hammer Peroxicare
52Arm & Hammer Peroxicare Regular
49Arm & Hammer Peroxicare Tartar
103Arm & Hammer Sensation
117Arm & Hammer Sensation Tartar Control
54Arm & Hammer Sensitive Freshening
54Arm & Hammer Sensitive Multi-Protection
54Arm & Hammer Sensitive Whitening
8Arm & Hammer Tooth Powder
78Biotene Gentle Dry Mouth Repair
23Biotene PBF Dry Mouth
63Biotene Regular
85Biotene Sensitive
60Boiron Homeodent Natural Toothpaste
65Clinpro
80Close-Up
120Close-Up with Baking Soda
110Close-Up Paste/Gel
53ClosysII
70Colgate 2-in-1 Fresh Mint
200Colgate 2-in-1 Tartar Control/ Whitening
200Colgate 2-in-1 Icy Blast/Whitening
145Colgate Baking Soda & Peroxide Whitening
120Colgate Baking Soda Paste
110Colgate Herbal
175Colgate Luminous
100Colgate Optic White
106Colgate Platinum
68Colgate Regular
63Colgate Sensitive Enamel Protect
83Colgate Sensitive Maximum Strength
125Colgate Sensitive Pro Relief, Enamel Repair
165Colgate Tartar Control
70Colgate Total
124Colgate Whitening
130Crest Extra Whitening
95Crest Kids
144Crest MultiCare Whitening
130Crest ProHealth
145Crest ProHealth Enamel Shield
130Crest ProHealth Night
130Crest ProHealth and Scope
95Crest Regular
107Crest Sensitivity Protection
124Crest Sensitvity Whitening and Scope
200Crest White Vivid
18CTx4 Gel Carifree
85Dentisse
30Elmex Sensitive Plus
98Fluoridex Daily Defense
155Fluoridex Enhanced Whitening
52Healthy Teeth and Gums
103Mentadent
101Natural White
176Nature’s Gate Paste
45Oxyfresh
97Oxyfresh Powder
95Oxyfresh with Fluoride
150Pepsodent (given as upper bound)
39PerioSciences AO Pro Hydrating
51PerioSciences AO Pro Sensitive
57PerioSciences AO Pro White Care
53PerioSciences AOPro Natural
110Prevident 5000 Booster
85Rembrant Intense Stain
63Rembrant Mint
53Rembrant Original
94Rembrant Plus
79Sensodyne
92Sensodyne Cool Gel
104Sensodyne Extra Whitening
94Sensodyne Fresh Impact
90Sensodyne Fresh Mint
37Sensodyne ProNamel
104Sensodyne Repair and Protect with Novamin
100Sensodyne Tarter Control Whitening
44Squigle Enamel Saver
70Squigle Tooth Builder
7Straight baking soda
62Super Smile
93Tom’s of Maine Regular
57Tom’s of Maine Children’s,
49Tom’s of Maine Regular Sensitive
4Toothbrush with plain water
133Ultra brite
145Ultra Brite Advanced Whitening Formula
260Ultrabrite Advanced Whitening
82Under the Gum
45Weleda Calendula Toothpaste
40Weleda Children’s Tooth Gel
45Weleda Pink Toothpaste w/Ratanhia
30Weleda Plant Tooth Gel
15Weleda Salt Toothpaste
62Wintermint Supre Smile

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Dr. Brian McKay & Dr. Thomas Kang
Seattle, Bellevue, Kirkland, Washington You and your smile deserve a Seattle cosmetic dentist who is world renowned for dental excellence: Dr. McKay. Call today if you are in Bellevue or Kirkland!
600 Broadway Ste 600
Seattle, WA 98122
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