What are the Ingredients in Toothpaste that are harmful?

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Last Updated on June 5, 2022

Just as there are many toxic ingredients in beauty products like facial creams and hair shampoos, you can also find a lot of life-threatening substances in your toothpaste. A lot of us are oblivious to the ingredients that are in our mouth wash and toothpaste. Many of the dental products we use contain toxic materials that could lead to health problems in the future. Many manufacturers of dental care products add cleaning agents that aren’t safe for our health all because they have the ability to leave you with a clean white teeth. In this article, we will be looking at the effects of ingredients such as propylene glycol in toothpaste. 

Sodium Fluoride 

Sodium fluoride is one of the chief ingredients you will find in many of the commercial products on the market. It is used in dental products due to the belief that it has the ability to build healthy strong teeth. The truth is that sodium fluoride is obtained from the manufacture of aluminum in the industry. You can also find it on the labels of pesticides and poison. It was discovered that the ingestion of a small amount of fluoride could lead to nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, and can even result in death if left untreated. Even though there is evidence pointing to the dangers of fluoride ingestion, a lot of notable dental products still contain sodium fluoride in their tubes. 


Sodium Lauryl Sulfate 

Another harmful ingredient to look out for in your toothpaste is sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS). You can also find sodium laureth sulfate in your toothpaste which is closely related to the former and are both dangerous to the health. SLS is added to toothpaste mainly due to its ability to clean which is why it is also used in making detergents. When ingested, SLS can cause difficulty in breathing and can irritate the skin when it comes in contact with it. There have also been cases of people suffering from eye problems when the compound came in contact with their eyes. There is no denying that sodium lauryl sulfate is truly effective at washing the teeth clean but there have been studies that have revealed the dangers of using beauty and dental products containing SLS, especially in toothpaste. With many of them suggesting that prolonged use could result in the buildup of toxins in the body. 


Triclosan is added in toothpaste mainly because of its antibacterial properties. But there are concerns that it isn’t safe to be used for dental hygiene. As a matter of fact, triclosan has been classified as a pesticide by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) claiming that it has a completely negative effect on the environment and human health. There is also the claim by scientists that triclosan can lead to cancer in humans when ingested for a long period of time. You can also find triclosan in many soaps and detergents that contain chemical compounds as the active ingredients. 


Propylene Glycol 

Propylene Glycol is another toxic substance you will find in toothpaste. It is used mainly as a surfactant and wetting agent. It is commonly used in antifreeze to add moisture to frozen ice which is why it is added to dental products where it serves as a tooth polish. There are claims that the prolonged exposure of the skin to propylene glycol could lead to kidney, liver, and brain problems. This is why EPA regulates that the substance be handled with rubber gloves when used in the factory or laboratory. But you could still find the chemical been used in making toothpaste and mouthwash. 

Titanium Dioxide 

You can also find titanium dioxide in most toothpaste. It is a chemical compound that helps to give toothpaste a white coloration. The chemical compound is also added to many skincare products where it doesn’t really perform any function. It is used solely to impress customers who believe that a shining white paste will result in a clean wash. Studies show that although titanium dioxide might not have negative effect when used on the skin, there are concerns that it can be harmful to the health when absorbed by the mucous membrane in the mouth. There are also claims that it might be carcinogenic and can lead to a build-up of toxins in the reproductive systems. 



This inorganic chemical is added to toothpaste as a preservative. This substance helps to extend the shelf life of the paste. It is also added to most cosmetic products where it also serves as a chemical preservative. There are growing concerns about the safety of the continuous accumulation of the substance in the body. Experts suggest that the prolonged used of skin and dental products containing parabens could increase the risk of breast cancer. 


Aspartame is one of the most common artificial sweeteners that are used to add flavor to toothpaste. There are many chemical compounds in aspartame that cannot be digested by the body and hence remains in the bloodstream as toxins which can cause memory loss, dizziness, gastrointestinal problems, headaches, and weakness. There are also claims that aspartame can increase the risk of cancer when consumed in excess. 


How to Avoid these Harmful Ingredients 

Now that you are aware of some of the inorganic chemical compounds contained in toothpaste that are harmful to the body, the safest thing to do is to avoid products that contain these substances. When shopping for toothpaste, you should check the ingredients for any of the chemical compounds listed above and avoid the products that contain any one of them. The truth is that it can be difficult to find a product that doesn’t contain any one of these ingredients, but you can avoid the risk completely by switching to organic toothpaste made from natural ingredients such as coconut oil, essential oil, and sea salt. 


There are growing research and studies into the potential risk factors associated with the continuous use of these substances. The safest precaution to take is to think about switching to a healthy alternative such as baking powder toothpaste and mouthwash. 

We will like to hear about your concerns with the ingredients listed above. What safer options do you use in your dental hygiene? Let us know in the comment section. You can also share this article with others to help raise awareness. 

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