A study by a Swedish research team found that massaging highly fluoridated toothpaste into teeth can boost the mineral’s protection of tooth enamel by 400%! An article at Science Daily explains, nearly a decade ago, a toothpaste with three-times as much fluoride as normal toothpaste went on the market in Sweden. This super-toothpaste was available over the counter, without a prescription, and was intended to help people who have a higher-than-average rate of tooth decay.
Why Fluoride Helps
When we eat acids, sugars, and starches, our saliva turns acidic and temporarily extracts minerals from our teeth. Without sufficient minerals, tooth enamel softens and becomes vulnerable to erosion and bacterial decay. Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that, when topically applied, absorbs into teeth and attracts other minerals that help strengthen tooth enamel. Most public water supplies contain fluoride, as do many ADA-approved toothpastes and mouthwashes.
The Study’s Results
Swedish scientists at the University of Gotheberg tested the toothpaste on 16 people and found that brushing with the super-toothpaste three times per day increased its protective abilities four times over, compared to people who brushed twice a day with regular fluoride toothpaste.
Furthermore, rubbing the super-toothpaste into teeth with the finger proved as affective as a third brushing. Brushing morning and night are still essential, but the mid-day toothpaste massage significantly boosted fluoride in the mouth.
Too Much Fluoride
As with most things in life, too much fluoride can cause problems. The government regulates the amount of fluoride that can be added to tap water and dental products. Their goal is, of course, to keep the general public from over indulging, which could cause harm. You won’t find Sweden’s super-toothpaste on American retailers’ shelves any time soon, if ever. However, a mid-day tooth massage with regular toothpaste may not be bad practice. If nothing else, it will freshen your breath!
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