If you look at the label of a store-bought conventional toothpaste, you’ll probably find ingredients with complex chemical names like triclosan, sodium laureth sulphate, dimethicone, and petrolatum. You’ll probably also find fragrance in there. All of these chemicals have serious human health effects associated with them. For example, triclosan, which is used as an antibacterial agent and preservative, is an endocrine disrupter. Sodium laureth sulphate or SLES is used as a foaming agent and is an irritant and can be contaminated with 1,4-dioxane, which is a possible carcinogen. And fragrance or ‘perfum’ actually consists of an undisclosed mixture of various scent chemicals, the vast majority of which are petroleum-based and have been linked to allergies and respiratory illnesses.
So what is a natural alternative to conventional toothpaste that is still effective in preventing cavities? How about a remineralizing tooth powder? Not only does this recipe that I’ve adapted from Mommypotamus prevent cavities, it also helps replace minerals that are lost from our teeth. I’ve been using it for a while now, and love it!
- 4 tablespoons bentonite clay – remineralizes teeth and draws out impurities from teeth
- 2 teaspoons baking soda – polishes teeth, draws out stains, and freshens breath
- 1 ½ teaspoons finely ground unrefined sea salt – antiseptic and remineralizes teeth
- ½ teaspoons clove powder – adds flavour and has astringent properties
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon – same as clove powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground peppermint leaves, spearmint leaves or 5-10 drops peppermint essential oil – same as clove powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons xylitol powder – natural sweetener and inhibits the growth of bacteria that cause cavities.
Measure and mix all ingredients using a stainless steel, wooden or plastic spoon into an glass jar with an airtight lid. Do not use metal spoons with bentonite clay, as it can absorb the metals in the spoon and become less effective.
To use the tooth powder, add a little to a wet toothbrush (I usually just dip my toothbrush into the jar and that works perfectly fine for me) and brush as normal. Note: this tooth powder can leave a residue on your sink, but it can be easily cleaned off with a wet cloth.