Why Toothpaste Makes Everything Else Taste Bad (and How to Fix It)

Ever brush your teeth, then take a swig of orange juice only to curse yourself for drinking such a vile combination? Magazine and weblog Mental_Floss explains why this happens, and how to avoid it. The strong minty flavor is probably part of the problem, as you’d expect, but   Mental_Floss notes that it goes deeper than that. Most toothpastes contain sodium laureth sulfate (and its counterparts, sodium lauryl ether sulfate and sodium lauryl sulfate), which is responsible for making the  toothpaste foam up in your mouth. Its also responsible for everything tasting bad afterward:

While surfactants make brushing our teeth a lot easier, they do more than make foam. Both SLES and SLS mess with our taste buds in two ways. One, they suppress the receptors on our taste buds that perceive sweetness, inhibiting our ability to pick up the sweet notes of food and drink. And, as if that wasn’t enough, they break up the phospholipids on our tongue. These fatty molecules inhibit our receptors for bitterness and keep bitter tastes from overwhelming us, but when they’re broken down by the surfactants in toothpaste, bitter tastes get enhanced.

Basically, they enhance bitter tastes and inhibit sweet ones, making everything taste bad. There are lots of theories out there, but this is currently the most widely accepted one.

The solution? You could brush your teeth after breakfast, but many dental professionals say it’s better to brush beforehand. So, the better option is to search for an SLS-free toothpaste the next time you’re shopping. Speaking from experience, an SLS-free toothpaste changes everything—I used one for a little while and never had the “disgusting orange juice” debacle in the morning. Generally it doesn’t matter what kind of toothpaste you buy, but if you must brush your teeth before breakfast, buying one without SLS is a good idea. Of course, you could always brush your teeth in the shower, too.

By Whitson Gordon
Article appeared on
www.Floss.com

JONES SMILES
Sedation ~ Cosmetic ~ Family Dentistry
7330 Spout Springs Road, Suite C15
Flowery Branch, GA 30542
(770) 965-3048

Not Flossing – Things That Can Ruin Your Smile

Although many of us are much more diligent about brushing than flossing, they are equally important.
“Flossing every day is one of the best things you can do to take care of your teeth. It’s the single most important factor in preventing periodontal disease, which affects more than 50% of adults,” says Meinecke.
Flossing helps remove plaque and debris that sticks to teeth and gums, and gives you a brighter smile by polishing the tooth’s surface; it even helps control bad breath.
Above article by: Kristin Koch, Health.com

JONES SMILES
Sedation ~ Cosmetic ~ Family Dentistry
7330 Spout Springs Road, Suite C15
Flowery Branch, GA 30542
(770) 965-3048

Learn more about toothpaste

What is toothpaste

  • Abrasives Detergent (1-2 per cent)
  • Binding agents (1 per cent)
  • Humectants (10-30 per cent)
  • Flavouring, sweetening and colouring agents (1-5 per cent)
  • Preservatives (0.05-0.5 per cent)
  • Water
Toothpastes are the most widely used oral health care product and there is considerable choice available to the consumer. Toothpaste types range from family anti-decay/anti-plaque types to the specific formulations for smokers, for sensitive teeth, special children’s formulations and the recently introduced tooth whitening pastes which are the fastest growing sector of the toothpaste market.

Toothpaste ingredients are usually shown on packs w/w’ – that is weight for weight, or grams per 100 grams. Under new European cosmetics legislation, toothpastes are required to list all ingredients. In addition to water and therapeutic agents such as fluoride, antibacterial, desensitising and anti-tartar agents, toothpaste will normally contain the following basic ingredients:

  • Abrasives
    These cleaning and polishing agents account for about a third of toothpaste by weight. Most of the abrasives used are chalk or silica based. Examples are dicalcium phosphate, sodium metaphosphate, calcium carbonate, silica, zirconium silicate or calcium pyrophosphate. Abrasives differ; an international standard defines a test paste against which toothpaste abrasivity can be assessed, but there is no system for ensuring that all toothpastes sold in the Republic of Ireland are at or below this abrasivity level.
  • Detergent (1-2 per cent)
    This makes toothpaste foam, as well as helping to distribute it round the mouth to lower surface tension and loosen plaque and other debris from the tooth surface. Examples are Sodium Lauryl Sulphate and Sodium M Lauryl Sarcosinate
  • Binding agents (1 per cent)
    These agents prevent separation of solid and liquid ingredients during storage. These are usually derived from cellulose, sodium carboxy-methyl cellulose being the most commonly used. Carrageenans (seaweed derived), xantham gums and alginates are also used.
  • Humectants (10-30 per cent)
    These agents retain moisture and prevent the toothpaste hardening on exposure to air. Glycerol, sorbitol and propylene glycol are commonly used, glycerol and sorbitol also sweeten the toothpaste, though this is not their main function.
  • Flavouring, sweetening and colouring agents (1-5 per cent)
    Peppermint, spearmint, cinnamon, wintergreen and menthol are among many, flavourings used. Mucosal irritations from toothpaste are rare and are usually linked to flavourings or preservatives. They can take the form of ulceration, gingivitis, angular cheilitis or perioral dermatitis. Flavourless toothpastes are not available commercially so the only solution is to change brand. For people who react to mint, some children’s formulations are mint free – for example homeopathic toothpastes tend to avoid mint because of interactions with other homeopathic remedies, but they may also leave out fluoride.
  • Preservatives (0.05-0.5 per cent)
    Alcohols, benzoates, formaldehyde and dichlorinated phenols are added to prevent bacterial growth on the organic binders and humectants.

Above article from DentalHealth.ie


JONES SMILES
Sedation ~ Cosmetic ~ Family Dentistry
7330 Spout Springs Road, Suite C15
Flowery Branch, GA 30542
(770) 965-3048