What kind of toothpaste are you using? No doubt we all have our favorite brand of toothpaste that we use on a daily basis. But do you know exactly what you're putting in your mouth?

According to the Center for Science in the Public Interest, there are many popular ingredients in toothpaste that are linked to allergic reactions, headaches and behavioral problems. Recently Dr. Harold Katz, a dentist and national oral health care expert, was on KGAB Mornings and said that we should all be paying attention as some ingredients found in toothpaste maybe detrimental to our health.

"All consumers - but especially parents - should read their toothpaste tubes today," says Dr. Katz. "Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, for instance, is a harsh detergent that can cause canker sores, sensitive gums and dry mouth, which makes us more vulnerable to airborne illnesses." Dr. Kates admits that we need toothpaste, and we need to clean our teeth to avoid plaque and bacteria build-up, which can lead to heart disease.

Artificial dyes, specifically in children's toothpaste, such as Brilliant Blue FCF (Blue 1), is a colorant for foods and other substances, and has the capacity for inducing allergic reactions in individuals with pre-existing moderate asthma. This, and other chemicals, are put into toothpaste to make it look like candy.

Another detrimental ingredient found in children's toothpaste is Triclosan, which was put in as an anti-bacterial agent which has a history of making existing bacteria in your mouth smarter, to where the toothpaste containing this ingredient is of none effect.

"For a quick fix, a little bit of baking soda on a soft nylon brush will do the trick," says Dr. Katz. He noted that there is a product on the market that we can purchase that is safe for children called TheraBreath.

So in the future, before buying that tube of toothpaste, read the label to ensure that your family stays happier and healthier for years to come!



Dr. Harold katz received his degree in bacteriology from UCLA and is the founder of The California Breath Clinics and author or "The Bad Breath Bible." Dr. Katz has been featured on television programs such as ABC's "Good Morning America," CBS's "Early Show," and "The View" with Barbara Walters and countless other television shows.