Good oral care habits start around the age of 3 with brushing after each meal and before going to bed. For kids between 3 and 6 years old, fluoride-free kid-safe toothpaste is generally recommended.
I read a lot about the benefits and side effects of fluoride and there are various opinions out there. In general, a small amount of fluoride is recommended to help remineralize the teeth enamel.
Depending on the quantity of the toothpaste that is swallowed (by mistake) and the brushing frequency, the amount of ingested fluoride might become dangerous for our kids, causing fluorosis.
We must not forget that in many countries the public water supply does contain a certain amount of added fluoride, as well as some soft drinks and some materials used by the dentists.
The International Association of Oral Medicine and Toxicology published in 2017 a comprehensive list of sources of exposure and human risks. They concluded that “collective exposure can produce lifelong fluoride-related illnesses”.
It is better to be safe than sorry, so I choose to alternate the use of a fluoride-free toothpaste with a regular toothpaste to diminish the overall fluoride quantity.
After trying a couple of other more or less natural products, we ended up with the Burt’s Bees Purely White Zen Peppermint Fluoride-Free and Burt’s Bees Kids Fruit Fusion. Even if the tubes are not so visually attractive for a kid (like the other brands that are using popular cartoon characters), my son loves them because of their good taste.
The first one is for kids 2 years and older. Its flavor is based on essential oils.
The second one is not recommended for the kids under 6 yrs. as they can swallow it. The manufacturer used the stevia plant as a sweetener. It has a pleasant fruity taste.
Both tubes are shared within our little family :).
According to the manufacturer website (information collected as of August 2020), both kinds of toothpastes are “made without: Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS free), Triclosan & Parabens, Artificial Flavours & Sweeteners*, Preservatives & Blue, Red, and Yellow Dyes”.
Before buying each product I search the EWG Skin Deep site. The lower it is on the scale (from 1 to 10) the better it is (less suspected hazards). If you are looking for more information visit the About section of their website.
The Purely White Zen Peppermint Fluoride-Free toothpaste has a rating of 2 from 10.
The Fruit Fusion Fluoride Toothpaste for Kids has a rating of 3 from 10.
What kind of toothpaste are you using and why?