How to choose a baby toothpaste?
Any dentist can confirm that it is necessary to start taking care of dental hygiene in the child immediately after the cutting of the first incisors - that is, from the age of five to seven months.In the beginning, parents need to clean the first teeth of the baby with a napkin or a special soft rubber brush.Table of contents: When should I start using baby paste?The main requirements that must be met by toothpastes for children Classification of children's pastes Selecting a baby pasta with age Recommended reading:
When to start using baby paste?
Many people believe that it is necessary to start using hygiene products such as special pastes for children after the child learns to rinse his mouth with water.Studies have shown that almost every third kid consciously or accidentally swallows toothpaste.We hasten to reassure: harm to health this can not cause, as in the composition of children's toothpastes, the concentration of potentially unsafe active components is minimal.
Other differences in the means adapted for children include their low abrasiveness.Due to this, the possibility of thinning of the enamel of the baby teeth is excluded.
It is known that adults often prefer fresh mint flavor, but in children it often causes an increase in the vomiting reflex.In this regard, most children's toothpastes are produced with a fruity or neutral taste.In production, only fragrances( fragrances) that are absolutely safe for the child's body are used.
The importance of pastes in the prevention( and, especially, treatment) of caries is greatly exaggerated.Often stated "good" is a usual marketing move, so do not blindly trust commercials and inscriptions on bright packages.The composition of oral hygiene products has little effect on factors predisposing to the development of carious lesions.To prevent this disease, regular mechanical cleaning of the enamel from the plaque, as well as proper nutrition and regular( at least 1 time in six months) passage of the examination at the children's dentist are more important.It is recommended to buy pastes for children either in the pharmacy or in specialized outlets.
Note: Children under the age of 14 are not at all suitable for adults, and so-called "pasta for the whole family"!
General requirements for toothpaste for children
The most important requirements for oral hygiene products include: :
- good cleaning properties;
- high refreshing and deodorizing properties;
- lack of components that can cause local irritation of the mucous membranes and the development of allergic reactions;
- pleasant smell and taste;
- no possibility for bacterial growth;
- stability and uniformity of composition.
Classification of children's pastes
Toothpastes for children are divided into:
- hygienic( to eliminate soft plaque and deodorization of the oral cavity);
- therapeutic( containing active antibacterial ingredients);
- therapeutic and prophylactic( containing substances that prevent the development of caries and diseases of peri-toothed tissues).
Among the treatment and prophylactic pastes it is customary to allocate the following groups of agents:
- improving the mineralization process( containing fluorides, phosphates and calcium compounds);
- positively affecting the condition of the mucous membranes and periodontal tissues( with anti-inflammatory components, enzymes, vitamins, mineral salts and antibacterial components);
- Preventing formation of dental plaque( contain mineral salts and enzymes);
- reducing the sensitivity of enamel( with increased content of calcium preparations).
Choosing a baby pasta based on age
The age of the child is the simplest, but very important, criterion when choosing a toothpaste.
From the moment of teething up to 4 years of age
Toothpastes for young children should guarantee a qualitative, but extremely gentle cleaning of the enamel of teeth from soft plaque and food residues.In this regard, when buying, you need to pay attention to a characteristic of the tool, such as RDA( abrasiveness index).It should not exceed 20 units.In the composition of pastes for children of the younger age group, fluorine is either not included at all, or is present in concentrations not exceeding 200 ppm.
From 4 to 8 years old
The children of this age group have a gradual change of milk teeth constant, so the pastes must meet the specific characteristics of both, and others.The level of abrasiveness should be already significantly higher, but not more than 50 units of RDA in order to avoid premature thinning of the enamel.The tolerable fluoride content is 500 ppm.
From 8 to 14 years old
In children of primary school age and adolescents, permanent teeth already predominate in the occlusion, so this group's pastes are much closer in composition to oral hygiene products for adults.The permissible level of abrasivity is also not higher than 50 units of RDA, but the fluorine content can reach already 1400 ppm.
Note: If a child has a high sensitivity of enamel, he needs to buy a paste, which includes a minimum number of abrasive particles.So, for a child from 4 to 8 years old, the dentist can advise products designed for younger children as a temporary measure.
In the case of diagnosing certain diseases of the oral cavity, doctors often recommend buying therapeutic pastes containing enzymes or other biologically active components.
Selection of toothpaste with regard to the composition
In each paste, there are necessarily some abrasive substances that provide mechanical cleaning of the enamel from soft plaque.Most often as an abrasive in the composition include sodium bicarbonate( baking soda) and calcium bicarbonate( in fact - chalk).In particular, these mineral compounds are in such popular brands as "New Pearl" and "My Sun".I must say that these substances can damage the enamel.When choosing it is advisable to give preference to products with more "sparing" particles - silicon dioxide or titanium.For example, you can recommend children's pastes Oral-B, Lacalut, Colgate and "Draco".
Note: Not every company indicates the packaging quantity of RDA units.Be careful when choosing!
Fluorine ions create an original protective layer on the enamel, which prevents the elution of calcium compounds, which ensures the strength of the tooth tissues.In many regions of our country, fluoride content in drinking water is lowered, which significantly increases the likelihood of caries development in children and adults.
Some manufacturers, in particular - Lacalut, produce special pastes for children receiving a small amount of fluoride with water.But in this case it is necessary to take into account that this element is characterized by a high level of toxicity and, if ingested, can lead to the development of fluorosis and a decrease in the functional activity of the thyroid gland.
If a child of an early age swallows the paste from time to time, you will acquire a product that does not contain fluoride.When choosing a composition for older children, make sure that the fluoride concentration does not exceed the allowable values for a certain age category.
Note: If the paste still contains some fluoride, it should be present as organic fluorides.On the packaging they are designated as aminofluoride or olaflur.
According to some data, the incidence of caries does not change with the use of artificially fluoridated water.A high level of fluoride can provoke the development of some neurological disorders in children.
Toothpaste containing fluoride compounds is contraindicated in the following cases:
- the child receives fluoride preparations;
- , water in the region undergoes additional fluorination;
- there are clinical signs of fluorosis( petiolate or yellowish spots and strips on the enamel).
Many pastes contain powerful antibacterial components.Among the most common antiseptics used in the production of toothpastes are chlorhexidine, triclosan and metronidazole.
These substances can effectively fight harmful microorganisms, but in parallel destroy and normal microflora.As a consequence, the microbiocenosis of the oral cavity may be disturbed.
Before buying a baby toothpaste with antiseptic ingredients, you should always consult a pediatric dentist.
Indications for the use of this category of drugs are the following diseases of the oral cavity:
- gingivitis( gum disease);
- periodontitis( inflammation of the surrounding tissue of the tissues);
- stomatitis( inflammatory lesion of the mucous membranes).
If there are no explicit indications, then it is better to choose a paste without the active ingredients listed above.
Note: such a component as chlorhexidine may cause a decrease or change in taste sensitivity and lead to a change in the color of the enamel.
Foaming compounds ensure a uniform consistency of the paste and improve the wetting of the enamel, which improves the quality of cleaning teeth from plaque.The most common substance in this category is sodium lauryl sulfate.
Note: On the tube, this connection can be indicated by the code E 487.
Sodium lauryl sulfate present in Blen-da-Med, Aquafresh and Colgate baby pastes is characterized by rather high toxicity.It can cause allergies and lead to the withering of the mucous membranes.It is better to give preference to products containing a less dangerous frother SLS( under this code name, sodium laureth sulfate is hidden).
Synthetic or natural binders are included in any paste.Natural ingredients include plant-derived pectins derived from certain species of seaweed or wood tar.
They are safe unlike artificial thickeners, which are acrylic acid compounds or cellulose derivatives.
Preservatives prevent reproduction of microflora in pastes during storage and use.When choosing, it is necessary to pay attention to the presence or absence of sodium benzoate.This substance, banned for use in a number of countries, in significant doses can have a carcinogenic effect, i.e., provoke the development of malignant( cancerous) tumors.
Propylene glycol and propylenebarbene present in, for example, "Four Fruits" pastes, "Colgate Doctor Hare", Astera Kids, Aquafresh Kids and "My Sunshine" are also serious.
Note: propylene glycol may be hidden behind the abbreviation PEG!
Taste additives are needed to "mask" the unpleasant aftertaste of a number of pastes.Most often to improve the taste and smell, extracts of mint( including menthol), vanillin and essential oils of eucalyptus are used.Sweeteners are also widely used, which are not a nutrient medium for caries-causing bacteria( saccharin and xylitol).
Dyes give a more attractive appearance to the products and motivate the child to brush their teeth, but their presence in children's pastes is still undesirable, since there is a possibility of development of hypersensitivity reactions( allergies).
In a truly useful toothpaste for children, components that stimulate the immunity of the child and improve the natural protective properties of the saliva must be present.
Such useful ingredients include:
- lactoperoxidase and lactoferrin( milk enzymes);
- lysozyme( antibacterial enzyme of saliva);
- is glucose oxide.
Well, if casein is included in the formulation.This natural protein stimulates the process of accumulation of calcium compounds in the layers of enamel, which helps strengthen the hard dental tissue.
Plisov Vladimir, dentist