Using toxic dental products is harmful for countless reasons, and oral cancer is one of them. According to the University Of Columbia School Of Public Health, “95% of all cancer is due to diet and the accumulation of toxins.” This is why Essential #2 is to Reduce Your Toxic Exposure. To learn practical ways to reduce toxic exposure, please review a few of these Essential #2 blog posts.
Toxic Dental Chemicals
Many mainstream dental products are super toxic! But most people never stop to pause and think about what they are putting in their mouth—because why would you? Why would something designed to clean your mouth and keep it healthy actually lead to major diseases like oral cancer? You may know all about this and already be using some of the safe and effective dental products listed below, or what I am about to say could be jaw-dropping. Whatever your reaction, please take it as a reminder to always investigate the ingredients on the back label instead of just being fooled by front-of-packaging marketing. The research still has a long way to go, and giant oral care companies could be blocking it. However, below is the info that we do know today.
Many alcohol-containing mouthwashes are made with a carcinogen called acetaldehyde which can lead to oral and neck cancers. The EPA currently considers acetaldehyde a “probably human carcinogen (Group B2) based on inadequate human cancer studies and animal studies that have shown nasal tumors in rats and laryngeal tumors in hamsters.” While there may not be enough studies to satisfy the EPA, relatively new studies show there is a possible link between mouthwash and oral cancer. Please review this 2019 study and this 2016 study.
The alcohol in mouthwash also poses other potential adverse effects on your health, such as dry mouth (xerostomia), halitosis, microbiome imbalances, and irritation of soft tissues.
A 2019 Harvard study found that Oral-B Glide floss had higher levels of a chemical called perfluorohexane sulfonic acid (PFHxS) that went directly into your blood steam. PFHxS is part of a larger class of chemicals called PFASs which also include toxic, nonstick cookware. On top of different types of cancers, this chemical can also reduce semen quality and trigger inflammatory bowel disease. The PFAS family are also huge endocrine disruptors that could affect your hormone balance.
Just like in mouthwash, the alcohol in toothpaste can kill off the bad—and the good bacteria—leading to oral cancer. Additionally, alcohol dries your mouth. Using it regularly can lead to an increased risk of plaque, mouth sores, gum disease, thrush (a mouth yeast infection), and cracked lips. Aspartame is also an artificial sweetener in toothpaste and other oral care products. It is carcinogenic and may lead to oral cancer. When ingested, some of the aspartame’s chemicals break down into methanol, and our bodies convert it to formaldehyde. Besides cancer, this can also cause memory loss, GI issues, and headaches.
Other Cancer-Causing Chemicals In Oral Health Products
Chemicals in toothpaste and other oral health products may also lead to breast cancer. For example, fluoride is a leading active ingredient in most products. It is a known endocrine disrupter and can lead to imbalanced thyroid function, decreased fertility, and depleted iodine levels.. All of these are known risk factors for breast cancer. You can learn more about fluoride via this blog.
Other harmful chemicals found in oral products (toothpaste, mouthwash, etc.) include artificial coloring, chlorhexidine, methyl salicylate, Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS), Triclosan, sodium nitrate, sodium benzoate, and methylparaben. Yikes, what a mouth full!
My main rule: If something has ingredients that you can’t pronounce or don’t know what they are—don’t use it!
Here’s just one example from one of the toxins listed above: Triclosan was initially classified as a pesticide and is an endocrine-disrupting chemical. As a xenoestrogen, Triclosan can displace estradiol from its receptors and potentially increase exposure to estradiol, leading to the development of breast cancer.
Ever wonder why most oral care products include a warning label: “If accidentally swallowed, get medical help or contact Poison Control right away”? If you have to contact Poison Control ASAP because you swallow something that is designed to “safely clean” your mouth, then that product shouldn’t be part of your daily routine! Everything that is absorbed into your oral cavity makes its way directly into your bloodstream through the sensitive capillary system in your mouth.
Effective And Non-Toxic Dental Products
As you know, I am a woman of research—and solutions!! I already did the research and found several natural oral care and teeth whitening options that make me smile! I use them and recommend them to our community.
When doing your research, study the back labels to ensure the product is made of natural and harmless ingredients. I also suggest using The Environmental Working Group’s app and website. They offer the largest database of brand-name products with a comprehensive rating system for chemical safety. You can even use their barcode scanner for in-store shopping. Don’t just trust the marketing on the packaging. EWG does the real work, so you have all the info you need to make your best decisions—instantly at your fingertips.
Ora Wellness Toothpaste
I love Ora Wellness because of the care and integrity that this family puts into each one of their products. Their Shine – Remineralizing Tooth Whitening Powder has been one of my go-to for years. Shine is unique because it uses Microcrystalline Hydroxyapatite in the formula, which is a form of powdered bone. Ora Wellness gets its bones from grass-fed New Zealand cattle. So you know that it is made with super clean ingredients. It is effective because it is made with the same basic minerals that our own teeth are made from.
Shine also whitens and restores dentures, veneers, and composites through the use of white kaolin clay powder. Research has found that this substance works best at whitening the most sensitive surfaces prone to staining. I also like to combine Shine with the Ora Wellness USDA Certified Organic HealThy Mouth Blend, which contains cinnamon, peppermint, spearmint, clove, myrrh, and manuka essential oils. The evidence-based anti-bacterial and gum rejuvenating power of these particular essential oils has been known for decades. You can check out the Ora Wellness products HERE.
Burst Expanding Dental Floss
Burst Expanding Floss is a floss that my Biological Dentist uses and recommends. It is made from microcrystalline wax, charcoal, xylitol, and mint eucalyptus. Charcoal is a natural absorber of bacteria and stain-producing materials like coffee and wine. The black color means that you can see the debris and actual plaque that you are getting out of your mouth each time you floss. The microcrystalline wax material that the floss is made out of is expandable. It is “clinically proven to remove up to 85% of plaque on tooth surfaces the toothbrush cannot reach.” You can learn more about and order Burst Expanding Dental Floss HERE.
Natural Ways To Whiten Your Teeth
Because we all want a naturally dazzling smile!
Oil pulling is designed to cleanse the mouth and detoxify the body. It was first mentioned in ancient medical texts over 2,000 years ago! You just swish approximately 1-2 teaspoons of oil in your mouth. Organic coconut or sesame oils are best because of their anti-bacterial properties. Its name accurately describes what is going on: the movement of the oil allows this natural substance to “pull” harmful microorganisms out of deep pockets between teeth and gums. The particular chemical makeup of the oil binds toxins to it without harming teeth or gums.
I swish the oil for about 10-15 minutes, 3-4 days a week. After swishing, pushing, and pulling the oil around your teeth, rinse your mouth with warm water and brush your teeth. This is critical to remember: NEVER swallow the oil!! Since it just pulled out your toxins, swallowing will send those toxins throughout your body. Always spit the oil out into a trash can. Many people notice improvements in their oral health right away. Gums heal, loose teeth tighten, and teeth naturally whiten.
Primal Life Organics
If you don’t want to worry about figuring out whitening strips, Primal Life Organics is a chemical-free and mess-free red and blue light LED system. It cleans your mouth and teeth for a bright, clean, and healthy smile. A device lasts for about 15 years, so there is no need to keep ordering new strips every month. Order your Primal Life Organics teeth whitening device HERE. To learn more, check out the interview with Tiny Felber, the creator, and CEO of Primal Life Organics, on my podcast. We talk all about biohacking your dental health for stronger, cleaner, whiter teeth and improved overall health.