Are you using a harmful toothpaste with triclosan?

Products containing harmful chemical triclosan

If you are considering orthodontic care in Montreal, then it’s likely that you are brushing your teeth everyday so that you can get that perfect smile. Beware the hidden dangers in your bathroom however. There exists a chemical known as Triclosan which is used in a number of household products that range from toothpastes to mouthwashes to toothbrushs and handclothes. The chemical is also used in soaps, cutting boards and even socks.

This chemical is found in over 2,600 different products and has been found in the serum levels of over 80% of the Canadian population. Though consumer groups had previously raised concerns over this chemical, a recent study released by UC Davis shows that the chemical impairs muscle functions in mice and fish. In the mice, exposure to the chemicals reduced their heart function by 25% while their grip strength decreased by 18%. The fish that were exposed to this chemical had 10% less swimming ability, even when put in life-or-death situations such as under attack by predators.

Both the Canadian Health Agency and the American Medican Association have expressed concerns that prolonged use of Triclosan can lead to antibiotic-resistant bacteria. There is an active campaign by several environmental organizations and advocacy groups to get use of this pesticide restricted only to hospital settings where it is used to treat MRSA (fleshing eating bacteria).  What’s more, in March 2012, Environment Canada declared triclosan harmful to the environment.

You can help protect yourself and your family by reducing exposure to products with triclosan. Colgate Total is a toothpaste that many people use that contains triclosan. While it is true that the ingredient is highly effective against gingivitis, there is a wealth of studies that show that triclosan impacts endocrine functionality and can affect thyroid functions.  We recommend that you look through your household for products that contain triclosan and replace them with other alternatives.

Apart from toothpastes, the most common household items containing triclosan are soaps. Over 75% of liquid soaps on the market contain this product, but it is not needed as the stance of the American Medical Association is that such products are no more effective than normal soap and water as they kill good bacteria that can help fight infections. If you use a hand-based sanitizer, it is recommended that you switch to one based on an alchohol content of at least 62%. This concentration is enough to be effective, but does not have the residual side effects of triclosan which can make its way into our water supply.

Depending on how it is marketed, Triclosan can go under other names that include Microban® Additive B, Irgasan® (DP 300 or PG 60) and Biofresh®.

We recommend the following toothpastes without Triclosan

We recommend the follow mouthwashes without Triclosan

For more information about the study, visit this site.