Triclosan was introduced in toothpaste in the mid 1990's. Triclosan is an antimicrobial agent that can be found in hand soap, cleaning products and toothpaste. Antibiotics and antimicrobial agents can alter the flora (environment) of the mouth and body. Antibiotics kill the bacteria we do want, as well as those we don't. Research shows that sometimes our friently flora never fully recover from the use of antibiotics. These long-term changes to the beneficial bacteria within people's bodies may even increase our susceptibility to infections and disease. Triclosan, a chemical that kills bacteria, is absorbed into the body and can effect other systems of the body.
Toothpaste and Probiotic
There has been a lot of research in the last decade on the use of probiotics in the mouth. Studies have shown that using a probiotic either chewed, swished in the mouth and swallowed or in a toothpaste can help many sufferers with gum disease. Our heavy reliance on antibiotics and antibacterials in everyday life may be responsible for the higher rates of allergic and autoimmune diseases in recent decades. Using a probiotic, both in the mouth and in the gut may help correct the the flora in both the mouth and the intestinal tract. A probiotic toothpaste or chewable tablet would be a much better alternative to a chemical that alters all of the bacteria in the mouth.
Toothpaste, Triclosan and side affects
The FDA claims triclosan is not harmful to humans. Animal studies have shown that triclosan alters hormone regulation, thyroid function. Other studies in bacteria research have raised the possibility that triclosan contributes to making bacteria resistant to antibiotics. Triclosan in toothpaste is effective in preventing gingivitis. Changing the oral flora and possibly causing a resistance to antibiotics and autoimmune diseases may be a good reason to use a toothpaste that does not have triclosan. An alternative might be using a toothpaste and other cleaning products that do not have triclosan. Try a toothpaste with natural ingredients that help with your gum health but do not challenge the good flora in your mouth.