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Beware of the Sparkly Toothpaste

Dr. Spiker Davis explains to us the harm in using toothpaste that contains micro beads of plastic.

All right. Thanks, Mike. It's 6:47 right now. One local dentist is encouraging you to check the ingredients on that toothpaste of yours. Products with microbeads are being phased out, but they're still available in some stores.

Fox 26 anchor Melissa Wilson talks to Dr. Spiker Davis who says those beads are a big problem for his patients.

Melanie actually saw a segment on Fox 26 morning news about those little crystals, those little beads in toothpaste, and she wanted me to do a little more investigating. So we came to the expert to find out what that's all about. That is still on the market, and it's a big concern.

My understanding is it's still in the market, although Crest has said they're taking it off. So I think what you're seeing is still remnants of what's left in the store. And Crest has FDA approval so they're not in a big hurry to take it off the market. But what concerns me is those little beads. The reason they put them in there is it sparkles, so it sells more. And so the sparkle is okay, but it's polypropylene. And me personally I don't want my kids or myself to have polypropylene in my mouth and then be swallowing it. So that's the big concern.

Do you see these little beads in people's teeth it sticks around?

We see it almost every day. Before you come to the dentist, you want to brush real good-


Look good before you show up. So then they come running in and get their teeth cleaned. We open up and it's "Wow! They got little blue beads everywhere." So I was going to show you some of these. So we'll just squirt this right on the toothbrush there, and you can see the little sparkle in there.

Mm-hmm (affirmative).

And so the way that works is the patient does their normal brush job, going round and round and round and round and all that kind of stuff. And then they spit it out, and then they run in here to see us for a cleaning. And right up next to the gum we see lots of those little blue particles.

Those are chemicals that have been shown to be dangerous to our health.

Yeah, polypropylene, a plastic. I mean who wants to swallow plastic and especially kids that are developing and maturing.

And the thing is is if it's getting stuck between your teeth, you're not going to end up spitting it out. You are going to end up swallowing that. The other thing is they're concerned because they're finding these in our water supply, right? So they don't want you to spitting it out either. They don't want us to be swallowing it later once it gets in the water supply.

Ends up in Galveston Bay.

There you go. All right, well it's important information. So hopefully people will know what to look for. So when they're buying their toothpaste, is there a particular thing on that ingredient list they're looking for, or does it just need to say with sparkles and then they'll know not to get that?

If you read on the box, it actually says polypropylene. But as far as I'm concerned, anything that looks sparkly, forget it.

Don't put it in your mouth.


All right. Thanks for the information.


And if you have a question to ask the doctor, you can always reach out to Melissa Wilson on Facebook at MelissaWilsonFox26 or on Twitter, @MelissaFox26.