How to Choose the Right Toothpaste

Enter the toothpaste aisle of your local drugstore and you might be overwhelmed by the multitude of different brands and varieties lining the shelves. You might be drawn in by claims such as whitening, bacteria fighting, cavity protection and much more. Fortunately, you can find a great toothpaste for under $5, and as long as it has a seal of approval from the Canadian Dental Association or the American Dental Association it’s probably going to be just fine. However, different toothpastes have features that you might find useful. Below we’ve broken down the pros and cons of several different types of toothpastes to help you find the right one for your unique dental needs.


Whitening toothpastes will generally contain a mild abrasive such as baking soda. While these toothpastes can help to buff away surface stains from the enamel, if you have deep discoloration you may require a professional teeth whitening treatment to see noticeable results.

Cavity protection:

Almost any toothpaste on the market contains fluoride, which offers cavity protection. Toothpastes making special claims about cavity protection likely have an extra measure fluoride. If you find that you are prone to cavities and this is a concern for you, special high fluoride toothpastes such as Colgate® PreviDent® 5000 Plus (Rx) are available by prescription only. Ask your dentist for more information.

Natural or organic brands

Many of the toothpastes labeled as having “natural” or “organic” ingredients are not approved by the Canadian or American Dental Association. This is likely due to the fact that many of these toothpastes do not contain fluoride. Since you won’t be ingesting toothpaste, there is no real need to opt for organic or special ingredients. In addition, these types of toothpastes are usually a little more expensive than regular brands and don’t offer the same level of cavity protection. If you really want to buy a natural brand of toothpaste, at least try to find one that contains fluoride for maximum effectiveness.

Children’s toothpastes

If you have kids, you may want to buy them their own special brand of toothpaste. Kid’s toothpastes are generally the same as regular ones except for the fact that they come in flavours that are more palatable to children, such as bubblegum or berry. If a toothpaste like this will make your child’s brushing experience more fun, then by all means go for it! But if all you have on hand is regular toothpaste that should work fine too- just remember to only use a pea size amount and make sure that your little one does not swallow any of it.

Desensitizing toothpaste

Toothpastes that are formulated for sensitive teeth are designed to provide relief from pain associated with hot and cold foods. If you suffer from sensitive teeth, toothpastes like Sensodyne® may help. Sensodyne® has a wide range of toothpastes that also have additional benefits such as whitening or cavity protection. However, if your sensitivity persists it’s best to come in for a checkup to help determine the cause of your sensitivity. If you are still unsure of which toothpaste is right for you, give us a call at +1 587-405-4587 to book a consultation with our friendly Edmonton dentist Dr. Fialka-Eshenko.

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