Alternative dental products containing natural ingredients, such as salt, have been a trend in recent years – and it's not surprising why. From adding flavor to food to providing important health benefits, salt has many advantages – including improving your dental health.
So if you're considering integrating salt into your oral care routine, keep these three factors in mind to do it safely – and to enjoy a more natural lifestyle!
1. Saltwater Rinses
Rinsing your mouth with saltwater is beneficial in many situations, including:
After tooth extractions: A study in Evidence-Based Dentistry found that using a warm saline mouthwash at least twice daily significantly reduces the occurrence of dry socket – which is the persistent, throbbing pain and exposure of the bare alveolar bone that usually occurs within 48-72 hours of a tooth extraction.
Oral thrush: The Mayo Clinic recommends using a warm saltwater rinse during an oral thrush outbreak.
Canker sores: By removing some bacteria and decreasing inflammation, salt rinses can help relieve canker sore pain.
2. Brushing Teeth with Salt
Salt toothpaste has become more popular, but how effective is it? And does it improve your dental health? A study in Oral Health and Preventive Dentistry found that the addition of sea salt to traditional abrasives in toothpaste can cause high abrasive dentin wear – without providing any additional dental benefits. Consult a dentist if you still want to use natural toothpaste.
Going the DIY route and using salt directly on your teeth to eliminate stains is also highly inadvisable, as salt's abrasive nature could cause them permanent damage.
3. Salt is Not a Replacement for Fluoride
If you’re looking to incorporate salt as an ingredient in your toothpaste, ensure that fluoride is still in the mix, per the American Dental Association's recommendation. This naturally-occurring mineral helps prevent cavities in adults and children by making the teeths' outer surface more resistant to acid attacks. Your dentist can help guide you here as well!
Salt is a versatile ingredient with many benefits – so don't hesitate to consult with your dentist while exploring natural solutions for your teeth, Together you can brainstorm to keep them healthy and bright for years to come!