March 10, 2013

What is Sodium Lauryl Sulfate?

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) is a common additive used in a variety of personal care products including toothpastes, shampoos and body washes, and in a variety of household products including laundry detergents, floor cleaners and engine degreasers.  SLS, similar to soap, is used as a surfactant, detergent and emulsifier; in short, it is an inexpensive and effective foaming agent. Because many people associate foaming with effective cleaning, SLS is frequently added to cleaning and personal care products such as toothpaste. Chemical additives, whether found in food or in oral hygiene products, can have potentially adverse health effects.  Toothpastes that contain SLS, for example, can produce irritation of the oral mucosa.

What makes SLS-free toothpaste an option worth your consideration?

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate has often been used in medical studies that test irritating agents. Some medical studies have linked SLS to an increased risk of developing canker sores, and questions have been raised about its potential to exacerbate gum disease. One study performed at the University of Oslo reported that symptoms of gum disease resolved 40 times faster when a sodium lauryl sulfate-free toothpaste was used1. One possible connection between SLS and gum disease may be the ingredient’s saliva-decreasing effect. Adequate saliva is crucial to good oral health; too little saliva makes the mouth a breeding ground for bacteria that is harmful to teeth and oral tissue.

While evidence of the adverse effects of SLS is limited to studies where the amount of SLS exceeds the average consumer’s level of ingestion, some people are more sensitive to sodium lauryl sulfate than others. In small amounts, SLS will not generally cause health problems, however, it is unnecessarily harsh on the highly sensitive tissues of the mouth. The effects of long-term use of oral care products containing SLS have not been studied.

Dental Herb Company understands the importance of high-quality sodium lauryl sulfate free products in maintaining overall oral health. By using proven formulations of Truly Natural® ingredients, Dental Herb Company creates products that are not only effective, but gentle — and the results speak for themselves.  Our 100% all natural oral care products include an SLS-free toothpaste and SLS-free mouth rinse. Our products are made from the highest quality pure essential oils and herbal extracts. We strongly believe in limiting one’s unnecessary exposure to chemicals through the use of holistic alternatives.

All Dental Herb Company products contain precisely calculated proportions of essential oils and botanicals for maximum therapeutic efficacy. We invite you try them for yourself and experience the refreshing taste and clean feeling in your mouth.  For best results, combine Dental Herb Company products with regular flossing and professional dental hygiene maintenance. The goal of Dental Herb Company is simple: to provide people with effective, great-tasting, SLS-free products that they can feel good about using.

References:

  1. Herlofson, BB, and P. Barkvoll. “Desquamative Effect of Sodium Lauryl Sulfate on Oral Mucosa. A Preliminary Study.” Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed. U.S. National Library of Medicine, n.d. Web. <http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7825393>.

 

 




3 Comments on What is Sodium Lauryl Sulfate?

Tina Paul says: March 26, 2013 at 10:29 pm

SLS or sodium lauryl sulphate is a widely used component in toothpastes, detergents and shampoos. This is the foaming agent or in other words, this is the one of the things responsible for forming the foam we love.

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