Wednesday, October 07, 2009

you put WHAT in WHERE???
triclosan in toothpaste

after you read this, go home, grab your toothpaste and read the active ingredients.  if it says "triclosan" there I would seriously consider discarding that toothpaste (yes, it's wasteful. but the alternative is worse, in my mind). at a minimum, when you're done with the tube? please, please buy toothpaste without triclosan.

if the word triclosan doesn't at least sort-of-kind-of ring a bell, I think you need to get out more. :)

triclosan is an antimicrobial.
and a pesticide.
and approved for use by the FDA.
it is also a skin, eye and respiratory irritant.
you find it in shampoos sometimes. and in hand soap and sanitizers.
and even in kitchen utensils, toys, bedding and socks, to name a few.
and it is VERY TOXIC to aquatic organisms. when exposed to sunlight, triclosan forms dioxins.  go read about 'em. they are very, very, very bad.

some scientists believe it may contribute to the rise of drug-resistant bacteria. I agree with them. if you want a more neutral point, check out what this fella has to say. but in any case, it's like what I tell the people who think global warming is a hoax--okay, fine, let's pretend it's a hoax. is putting less pollution into the world a BAD thing? yeah, that's what I thought.

just in case you're still not picking up what I'm putting down--so, the sides are stacked, and triclosan looks pretty bad...but maybe it's not, like horrifyingly bad. I mean, it isn't lethal, right? Not to humans, anyway.

But, do you really want to put a skin and eye irritant INTO YOUR MOUTH? And do you really want to kill the fishies and pollute our waterways every time you brush your teeth?  I mean...put toothpaste on brush. brush your teeth. spit. rinse. spit. right?

where does that water go? down the drain...where it gets to the wastewater treatment, eventually, right? and they can't get out all of the triclosan (which ps, that water is often exposed to sunlight as a part of treatment, did you know that? hello, dioxins. nice scary to see you!) after the wastewater is treated it's released into some body of water, where it sits, and mixes with other water, and the dioxins and the remaining triclosan just hang out...

maybe that water is used for city water at some point. maybe a fish swimming in that water is your dinner in a few months.

maybe you should get new toothpaste.
and maybe we should stop supporting all this damn germ hysteria.

(note: I get that with the sw!ne flu and all that germs are a huge deal. but it's nothing that a 30 second hand wash with soap and hot water wouldn't fix. I mean, hand sanitizer? everywhere? in addition to hand washing, even? yikesies.)


M. said...

As soon as I read this, I jumped up and read the ingredients on my toothpaste. I use Tom's of Maine, which doesn't have triclosan. I recommend it. I was wary of natural toothpaste, cause I am kindof paranoid about cavities and such. But it works great and my dentist approves.

{lauryl} said...

Do you know which toothpastes DON'T have triclosan? It would be so helpful if you could share a list. Thanks! And thanks for the heads up- that was definitely news to me.

m-m-m-melissa said...

ugh. even toothpaste is scary? boooooooo. :(

Leanne...the walker said...

literally laughed out loud at my desk about the global warming bit. Whatever you do, don't move to this area... AKA the area where you have to whisper gay and black, global warming is a political scam, God is exclusively male and is only on the side of the religious right... I could go on... :-)

Thanks for the news on toothpaste. I just texted Jarrod to find out if triclosan is in our toothpaste.

sarah said...

any recs on a good toothpaste?

this post made me very happy. the science teachers at my school say that all this hand sanitizer is actually a BAD thing.

care said...

thanks for all the comments, ladies!

I can't share a list--google doesn't give me one and goodness knows I'm not gonna make one! :) It should be stated, clearly, on the back of your toothpaste. Active ingredients must be on the package AND the product container.

So as far as I know triclosan isn't hiding in your toothpaste (unless there are microscopic amounts from the water used in producing the toothpaste!)--it will be called out plain as day.

There are plenty of good options--I know you will find lots of eco-friendly ones at your local Whole Foods/Earthfare/Wild Oats, or even just get the one with the shortest list of ingredients. That's always a safe bet!

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