Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Greener Oral Care

This post was suggested by a commenter last week. Retro Housewife is here to please.
If you have post suggestions let me know. :)

It's amazing the amount of waste and toxins that can go into caring for our teeth. There are tooth brushes, mouthwash, toothpaste, and dental floss. There are more natural options though, that help us reduce our carbon footprint and are healthier for us.

While there are many natural toothpastes out there at are free of things like SLS, fluoride, artificial sweeteners, and dyes, there is one thing most of those still have that maybe bad for our teeth, glycerin. Glycerin is thought to coat your teeth and make it where they can't remineralize.

One great natural option is tooth soap. Tooth soap is just a soap made for teeth, it takes a bit of getting used to. However, they are in flavors that taste pretty good and some people like the way it foams. It does leave your teeth feeling nice a clean. A popular option for natural tooth soap is Rose of Sharon Acres, it comes in several flavors. If you just can't make yourself use the soap you can also get glycerin free toothpaste from Miessence. Or there are tooth powders which are very similar to tooth soap. Both are also great options.

For mouthwash you also want something glycerin free. This is also hard to find even in natural mouthwashes. One great option is the certified organic mouthwash from Miessence. It's highly concentrated so there is less waste and it lasts a long time.

Tooth brushes can mean a lot of plastic waste. This is a big subject all on its own so for more check out this post on My Plastic-Free Life about tooth brush options. For dental floss check out Eco-Dent or Tom's of Maine.

With a few simple changes your oral care can be better for you and the planet. Do you use any of these oral care options? Are there other green oral care products you like?

Photo credits:
Tooth Soap- Rose of Sharon Acres
Mouthwash- Ely Organics

I'm not a dentist so as with all medical things, do your own research and talk to your dentist if you have questions. This is just what I have found works for me.


Heather said...

I brush my teeth with a homemade tooth powder that's super-cheap, super-easy and works extremely well for me.

I mix baking soda and salt 3:1 and store that in a small jar. Six tablespoons baking soda mixed with two tablespoons salt seems to last maybe 4 months or so with just one person using it.

To brush my teeth I wet the toothbrush, dip it lightly in the powder then brush as normal. It's different, as you don't get any foam, but it's very effective. It's also great for sensitive teeth - before I discovered this, I could only use Sensodyne which here in NZ is around $10 a tube! My dentist says it's fine for my teeth and I've been using it for some years now with no problems.

Some people add peppermint essence to the mix, but I don't bother. I got used to the taste fairly quickly, and it has the added benefit that you can drink orange juice straight after and it doesn't taste gross :-) However, if you eat anything really acidic (like pickles straight from the jar) then you froth slightly at the mouth if you haven't rinsed your mouth properly! Quite disconcerting the first time...

Rae said...

I just started making my own toothpaste with baking soda and organic castile soap. 1/4 cup of baking soda and 1/4 tsp of soap at a time until it turns to a paste. It foams up nicely and tastes better than just plain baking soda!

Luke Shavak said...

I use the Miessence toothpaste. One of the best organic toothpastes you can get. Don't use anything else!


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