Can Toothpastes Cause Canker Sores?

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Canker Sores—just the thought of it can make you swear your heart out! Canker sores are the most annoying things that could ever happen inside our mouth. Imagine the many enjoyable things we can do with our mouth that we cannot do properly with the presence of these pesky and terrible sores. Eating, drinking, talking continuously and the likes—all these won’t as comfortable as they normally are with canker sores. 

Canker sores are small but terrible! In fact if you compare a bruise or a wound the size of a dime to a two to three millimeter sized canker sore inside the mouth, canker sore pain is much worse compared to the bruise/wound. There are many causes of canker sore that has been identified by authorities and some of them include mechanical accidents/ pressures, vitamin deficiency, vices, improper oral hygiene and the likes. However, surprising as it may sound, some toothpastes have been known to cause canker sores in people. 

What??? Toothpastes can cause canker sores? Canker sore toothpastes have been identified and these are the toothpastes containing a compound called SLS or Sodium Lauryl Sulfate. Still can’t figure out how canker sore toothpastes can cause these discomforts? Here are some basic information about the tricky little thing called SLS. 

What Is Canker Sore Toothpaste SLS?

 SLS or Sodium Lauryl Sulfate is a foaming ingredient. This can be found in other commercial products like shampoo (as its main ingredient), mouth washes, and most commonly detergents also contain this SLS. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate is a compound which causes the foaming effects of the aforementioned products. The question is… are their beneficial effects we can get from SLS? The answer is a big NO.

SLS has no direct benefits in cleaning our teeth—they simply make toothpastes, detergents and shampoos appear effective! Since it is a common ingredients used in detergents, it is easy to understand how these can cause canker sores.

-          First is that SLS can cause the dryness of the oral cavity. When the oral mucosa dries up, irritation becomes common which can lead to the development of these apthous ulcers. 

-          Second is that apart from the drying effect it gives to our oral mucosa, it also makes thinner the oral lining, rendering it easily prone for breakdown and prone for trauma.

Therefore, it is recommended that in choosing the correct toothpaste, one must carefully scrutinize the ingredients that it contains. Once you see SLS on the list, put it back to the shelf and get the next brand. There are a number of other toothpastes which do not contain SLS and these can be effective in cleaning our teeth genuinely without the fooling “foamy” factor.

Also, make sure you are aware of these tips in preventing the development of canker sores:

-          Get plenty of fruits and vegetables in your diet. These are rich in vitamin C—an important factor towards tissue healing and curing of wounds.

-          Practice good oral hygiene… using a non-SLS toothpaste is not the only answer to canker sore prevention but brushing your teeth at least twice a day, flossing and going to the dentist routinely is the way to go.



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