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Keeping Your Teeth Green

While you definitely don’t want green teeth, keeping a healthy smile with the lowest environmental impact is pretty important these days. Between a new toothbrush every month to buckets of chemicals used on your pearly whites, you may have more of an eco dental print than you’re aware of. But with the tips below you can green your dental routine just as easily as you’ve likely don the rest of your life.

Use green toothpaste. Again, it doesn’t have to be the color green—but it should be eco-friendly. My favorite is Tom’s of Maine, which comes in a recyclable container and contains all safe, environmentally kind ingredients. There are plenty of other varieties available too, like Desert Essence and Nature’s Gate.

Whatever you choose, make sure that you avoid the chemical sodium lauryl sulfate, which you should always avoid in personal care products; corrosive and considered one of the most dangerous chemicals used on people—if not the most dangerous—it can cause cataract development, delayed eye development in children, hair loss, and a multitude of other problems.

You also want to stay away from parabens, which may cause tumors.

Get a biodegradable floss. Most flosses on the market will not break down, so go for a brand like Eco Dent for your flossing needs.

Get an eco-friendly toothbrush. You don’t have to buy a plastic Snoopy brush when there are plenty of alternatives available, such as recyclable toothbrush heads. The Preserve Toothbrush and the funky Radius Source Toothbrush are good choices, but there are plenty of others out there.

When you’re brushing your teeth and having so much fun, never let the water run. I know it’s a corny kids’ song, but whatever works to get you to remember the idea is good for me.

Get a tree-hugging dentist. You can find one at the Eco Dentistry Association website. If you’re stuck on your current dentist, see if they can use cloth instead of plastic whenever possible, and if they can use digital x-rays instead of the ones with harmful radiation. You can also ask him or her to visit Green Tooth Dental, which has loads of tips on becoming a more eco-friendly dentist.

Make your own dental products. Most eco-friendly stuff can be made in your own kitchen, and dental rinse is no exception. Did you know that you can make a tooth whitener out of salt and lemon?