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Crest toothpaste safe?

There has been a lot of talk recently about an ingredient in crest toothpaste: polyethylene. Polyethylene is one of the most common types of plastic. Now why would plastic be put in toothpaste one might ask? Is Crest toothpaste safe, and what toothpastes don’t have polyethylene in them?

Inactive ingredients: Polyethylene

There are many inactive ingredients in most brands of toothpaste. We have covered some in our previous blog, “Which toothpaste is best”. The ingredient in question in today’s blog is polyethylene, which can be found in many brands of Crest toothpaste. Polyethylene is plastic and it can be found in things like grocery bags, bath washes, and yes Crest toothpaste. The FDA says it is safe for use, however there is some controversy surrounding the substance. Currently Crest uses the ingredient for cosmetic reasons in the form of little plastic colored beads. They are taking inquiries for possible refunds of their products and can be reached via their Facebook page found here.

Is Crest toothpaste safe?

Is polyethylene harmful? Potentially, but unproven. Crest currently still has polyethylene in toothpaste products, however has pledged to remove the ingredient of some products by March of next year, and in all products by 2016. It is still considered a safe ingredient by the FDA, but because of consumer demands, it is being removed. Some dentists believe that the ingredient can contribute to gingivitis (inflammation of the gums) by becoming lodged in-between your teeth and gum tissue, an area called the sulcus. The ADA currently is not removing the “Crest of approval” for Crest toothpaste products containing polyethylene beads. You can read more about it here.

What toothpastes don’t have polyethylene in them?

There are many! In fact, most toothpastes do not have polyethylene in them. Examples would be Tom’s of Maine, Colgate, some Crest products etc. The best way to know is check the inactive ingredients when you buy your next tube of toothpaste for polypropylene or polyethylene.

Keep smiling Chicago!

Kevin Dow