Xylitol toothpaste is one of the most popular products among children. Most of them are using it because they believe that it will prevent cavities. However, there have been many studies which show that xylitol does not really work like that at all. There are some reports showing that xylitol may cause dental fluorosis (yellowing) in teeth. Fluoride is known to cause tooth decay, but there are other factors involved too. Xylitol may actually make your teeth more susceptible to decay due to its acidic nature.
What Are Some Effects Of Using Xylitol Toothpaste?
The main effect of using xylitol toothpaste is that it may increase the risk of developing dental fluorosis. This condition occurs when fluoride accumulates in the bones and enamel of the teeth. The fluoride causes the formation of calcium phosphate crystals in the teeth. These crystals cause yellowing of the teeth and can even lead to permanent damage.
How Does Xylitol Toothpaste Affect Teeth?
It is possible that xylitol toothpaste may affect your teeth in several ways:
1. Increased Risk Of Dental Fluorosis – Fluoride has been shown to cause dental fluorosis (yellowing).
There are several mechanisms by which this can occur. Most of these involve long-term exposure to high levels of fluoride. However, there are some instances in which dental fluorosis can occur at lower levels of fluoride. One of these is when you have a deficiency of calcium.
When this happens, fluoride may be more readily absorbed into the enamel and cause discoloration. This is why it is very important to get enough calcium.
2. Allergic Reactions – Some people report allergic reactions to certain xylitol brands.
Just keep in mind that you should not use these toothpastes if you have an allergy to birch or Birch tree ingredients. There are several different types of xylitol toothpaste on the market. You may want to choose a different brand if you notice redness or irritation after using it.
3. Acidic Xylitol – The acidity of xylitol has also been known to wear away tooth enamel.
This can lead to tooth decay and cavities. It is also possible that the porous nature of the enamel may allow more of the fluoride in the toothpaste to be absorbed.
4. Staining Of Teeth – There are some studies which show that xylitol toothpastes can cause yellowing of teeth.
The main cause is the fluoride ions being absorbed into the teeth. This happens because of the porosity of the enamel. Yellowing of the teeth can also occur with other types of toothpaste as well. It really just depends upon your genes and other factors like diet.
Xylitol Toothpastes – What You Need To Know
1. Potential Allergic Reactions – Just keep in mind that you may have an allergic reaction to certain xylitol toothpastes.
In fact, you may even experience an allergic reaction to other types of sugar-free gum as well. Some people have reported having reactions to xylitol, but not others. It is possible that you may be sensitive to some types of xylitol, but not others.
2. Other Types Of Toothpaste – Most toothpastes are not made with xylitol, even if they are sugar-free.
So if you are looking for a toothpaste that does not contain fluoride, it is best to get one that is not typically used for dental care.
3. Other Allergies – Most people are aware if they have an allergy to birch or birch tree ingredients.
However, other types of allergies can occur as well. These can be due to the types of xylitol used in the toothpaste, sugars and even the ingredients added in order to sweeten it.
4. Irritation – Some people report that they experience mouth sores or irritation after using xylitol toothpastes.
Most of the time, this is temporary and your body gets used to it after a few days.
Sources & references used in this article:
Cluster-randomized xylitol toothpaste trial for early childhood caries prevention by DL Chi, O Tut, P Milgrom – Journal of dentistry for children, 2014 – ingentaconnect.com
Xylitol toxicosis in dogs by LA Murphy, AE Coleman – Veterinary Clinics: Small Animal …, 2012 – vetsmall.theclinics.com
A rare sugar xylitol. Part I: the biochemistry and biosynthesis of xylitol by TB Granström, K Izumori, M Leisola – Applied microbiology and …, 2007 – Springer
Enhancing fluoride: clinical human studies of alternatives or boosters for caries management by M Fontana – Caries Research, 2016 – karger.com
Effect of chewing gums containing xylitol or probiotic bacteria on salivary mutans streptococci and lactobacilli by E Caglar, SC Kavaloglu, OO Kuscu, N Sandalli… – Clinical oral …, 2007 – Springer
An introduction to toothpaste-its purpose, history and ingredients by F Lippert – Toothpastes, 2013 – karger.com