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Does Toothpaste Expire?

June 15, 2011

Filed under: Dental Care — admin @ 8:58 am

Yes, pay attention to the expiration date on your tube of toothpaste!

According to a Chicago Tribune article about items that can lose their effectiveness,

  • The greatest concern about toothpaste is the reduction in the concentration of fluoride, which is key to cavity prevention, said Frank Lippert, a researcher at Indiana University’s Oral Health Research Institute.
  • Anti-tartar and whitening agents also can degrade, making the product less effective.
  • Toothpastes with chemicals such as triclosan, which fights gingivitis, have an even shorter shelf life because that chemical can leach into the packaging material over time, cutting effectiveness.
  • Also, disappearing flavor and the process of syneresis (when water leaves the gel and makes the tube hard to squeeze), make old toothpaste unpleasant.

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