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How abrasive should my toothpaste be?

Jonathan B. Levine, DMD
Prosthodontics
Toothpastes are measured by their relative dentin abrasivity, or RDA (not to be confused with the other RDA, recommended dietary allowances). Check out how yours stacks up against the rest. The thing to notice here is that, just as you don’t want a toothbrush with bristles that are too coarse, you don’t want your toothpaste to be highly abrasive. Most professionals recommend using one with a low RDA rating, especially if your teeth are sensitive.
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Most toothpastes contain mild abrasives, which are substances designed to remove debris from your teeth and also scrub off surface stains. But overly abrasive toothpastes can damage teeth. Some whitening toothpastes contain materials that may be too abrasive for your teeth. Ask your dentist for a recommendation before making a decision on whether to buy a whitening toothpaste and which one to buy.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.