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The Nasty Nine – Toxins To Avoid In Toothpaste

toxins in toothpaste
Published By Dr. Rachel Hall at 1 October, 2022

Traditional toothpastes often contain a whole host of ingredients, many of which are known to be harmful and toxic to the human body. There are nine main nasty toxins in toothpaste that you should avoid.

Often people want me to tell them what brand or specific toothpaste suits their needs and while I can do that not everyone can access the products we sell in-house at our holistic dental practice at Evolve Kenmore Dentist.

So I’m going to share with you what to avoid when it comes to choosing a toothpaste – the Nasty Nine – the toxic chemicals that lurk in traditional toothpastes.

The Nasty Nine – Toxins in Your Toothpaste

Many commercial toothpastes contain toxic ingredients. Traditional toothpaste brands do not want you to know about this group of bad (and bad for you) ingredients.

The average Australian spends 24 hours a year filling their mouth with the same toxins found in toilet cleaner and rat poison.

One ingredient, Triclosan has been banned in soap and body wash, but is still lurking in our toothpaste. And you’re probably putting it in your mouth twice a day, every day without even knowing it.

Titanium Dioxide

An inorganic chemical compound added as a colourant to make toothpaste white.

Why it’s harmful:
Evidence suggests that some nanoparticles in titanium dioxide may induce toxic effects in your brain and cause nerve damage. Some may even be carcinogenic.


This pesticide has been banned by the Food and Drug Administration in soap and body wash, but is still lurking in our toothpaste for its anti-bacterial properties.

Why it’s harmful:
Triclosan wipes out everything in its path; both good and bad bacteria in your mouth. This imbalances your mouth’s microorganisms, leading to bad breath, dry mouth and negatively impacting your body’s natural ability to build resistance to disease and infection.

SLS – Sodium Lauryl Sulphate

This chemical compound is used as a surfactant, detergent denaturant in various cosmetics and industrial cleaners. It’s also used as a foaming agent in toothpaste.

Why it’s harmful:
SLS irritates the mouth and strips away the lining, which can lead to canker sores, irritation and organ toxicity. Almost 16,000 studies have exposed the toxic nature of this chemical, often used as an insecticide.


Chemicals used as preservatives to extend the shelf life of toothpaste.

Why it’s harmful:
These compounds can act like the hormone estrogen and are suspected to be endocrine disruptors: thought to potentially lead to cancer, as well as developmental and reproductive issues.

Propylene Glycol

A synthetic chemical compound used as a surfactant. It’s also used in antifreeze and paints and is used in toothpaste to smooth out the texture.

Why it’s harmful:
Highly toxic to humans, this compound is known to irritate the skin, eyes, lungs and mucous membranes.

DEA Diethanolamine

A compound used to make your toothpaste foam.

Why it’s harmful:

It has been shown to cause eye and skin irritation and has even been linked to liver cancer in mice. It is also a hormone disruptor and known to cause organ system toxicity.

Artificial Colouring

Artificial toothpaste colours are used to make commercial toothpaste aesthetically pleasing.

Why it’s harmful:

Artificial dyes may contain up to 10% impurities. Some of these undesired ingredients could include lead, arsenic, mercury and carcinogens. Additionally, artificial colourings have been linked to behavioural problems in children.


A man-made additive and toxic-by product of the fertilizer and aluminium industries that is added to toothpaste under the proviso that it is designed to protect tooth enamel from decay.

Why it’s harmful:
Fluoride is a toxic poison and endocrine disruptor that has been shown to impair IQ, brain function, thyroid health, and kidney function and cause damage to developing teeth. Fluoride is a carcinogen and highly toxic at low dosages. There is enough fluoride in one tube of toothpaste to kill a young child if ingested in one go.


What it is: Aspartame is an artificial sweetener used as a flavouring agent.

Why it’s harmful: When aspartame is ingested, one of the chemicals in the compound is broken down into methanol, an alcohol. Our bodies cannot properly digest it in this form. It can travel through the blood and may be converted into formaldehyde. As this builds up in the body, the damage caused can include headaches, dizziness, weakness, memory loss, and gastrointestinal distress. A 2014 study also determined that aspartame is a possible carcinogen.

What Natural Toothpaste Can I Use?

There are many great natural toothpastes available that do not contain the nasty nine toxic toothpaste ingredients.

As a holistic dentist, I recommend toothpastes by Grants or Gem as both are non-toxic and Australian-made.

Gem contains hydroxyapatite which is the main mineral our teeth and bones are made of and is a proven, safe alternative to fluoride. It works by repairing and re-mineralising tooth enamel with calcium and phosphorus, which helps teeth to become harder and stronger, while also whitening and smoothening the tooth’s surface.

When it comes to choosing your toothpaste and oral hygiene products do your mouth a favour, avoid the nasty nine and opt for something more natural and organic instead.

Brisbane Holistic Dentist

Looking for a natural, non-toxic approach to your dental care? Evolve Dental Kenmore is a Brisbane-based holistic dental practice with over 30 years of experience providing fluoride-free, mercury-free dentistry incorporating safe amalgam removal, orthodontics, cosmetic dentistry and more.

Call us today to book your consultation 07 3720 1811

  • Dr. Rachel Hall

    Dr. Rachel Hall

    Rachel is the founder and principal dentist at Evolve Dental Healing with over 30 years experience, practising holistically since 2001. Not your typical dentist, Rachel is a passionate opinion leader, challenging convention to empower people to make better dental and health choices, helping thousands to have healthy natural smiles. A respected writer and presenter on holistic dentistry, health and wellness it is Rachel’s mission to revolutionise the way people look at their dental health.

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