Today, a significant number of personal care products such as scrubs and toothpastes are known to contain thousands of minuscule balls of plastic called microplastics, or more specifically, microbeads. Over the years, microbeads have replaced traditional, biodegradable alternatives such as ground nut shells, and salt crystals.
The tiny plastic beads found in many popular toothpaste brands are approved by regulators, but dentists are becoming increasingly alarmed that the beads could cause more dental hygiene problems than they solve. Polyethylene plastic beads became all the rage in personal care products — including toothpastes, face washes and body scrubs — a few years ago. And the Food and Drug Administration says they're safe.
Several local news stations from around the U.S. report that dentists are alarmed by blue polyethylene (plastic) microbeads in Crest brand toothpaste that are causing harm to their patients' teeth and gums.
Crest is now reportedly taking action to remove the dangerous ingredient from “most” of its toothpastes.
The American Dental Association quickly released an official statement contradicting local dentists claiming that they do not believe polyethylene microbeads poses a health risk.
It reads in part:
The American Dental Associations (ADA) Council on Scientific Affairs, on an ongoing basis, monitors and evaluates the safety of all ADA Seal-Accepted products. If the councils evaluation determines sufficient scientific evidence exists that an ADA Seal-Accepted product poses a health risk, the council has the authority to withdraw the Seal from that product. At this time, clinically relevant dental health studies do not indicate that the Seal should be removed from toothpastes that contain polyethylene microbeads.
It's recommended to …
The American Dental Association (ADA) says they're not planning on rescinding their seal of approval from Crest products that contain microbeads.
“The Council will continue to monitor and evaluate new scientific information on this issue as it becomes available,” the ADA said in a statement. “In the meantime, the ADA recommends that individuals continue to follow the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) recommendations on the use of dental health care products.”
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