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Toothpaste

Low Risk

Also known as:

Aim™ Aquafresh® children's toothpaste Colgate® Crest® Orajel™ Sensodyne® Tom’s of Maine® training toothpaste whitening toothpaste

Possible Symptoms
  • Minor upset stomach
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea
What to Do
  1. Wipe or rinse out the mouth.
  2. Give a serving size of water to drink.
  3. Call 1-800-222-1222 for additional instructions.

Important

If a person has gotten into prescription dental products, such as toothpaste, rinses, drops, tablets, and lozenges, the risk for fluoride poisoning is increased. Many prescription dental products contain up to 5 times more fluoride than over-the-counter toothpaste and rinses. Call the Missouri Poison Center at 1-800-222-1222 for additional information.

Additional Information

Children getting into toothpaste is a very common call to the poison center because they love to imitate adults. During an unsupervised moment with a tube of toothpaste, their curious nature may take over and the child may actually eat the toothpaste.

Most toothpastes contains fluoride to help prevent cavities and strengthen tooth enamel. The amount of fluoride in toothpaste is regulated by the FDA so that the maximum amount allowed in a tube is usually a low enough concentration that will cause only minor symptoms such as stomach upset and vomiting if accidentally swallowed. In addition to fluoride, other ingredients in toothpaste include an abrasive to remove plaque, a surfactant (soap) to clean the teeth, and a sweetener such as sorbitol for a pleasant taste. These additional ingredients are not considered toxic, however, the surfactant can cause minor irritation to the stomach, and the sweetening agent can have laxative like effects if ingested in large amounts.

If you find your child eating toothpaste, do not panic. Take the toothpaste away from them, wipe out the mouth with a soft, wet cloth and give them some water to drink. If problems start or you have questions, call the Missouri Poison Center right away at 1-800-222-1222. The poison center is open all day, every day for poisoning emergencies and questions.

Special Note: If your child has gotten into prescription dental products, such as toothpaste, rinses, drops, tablets and lozenges, the risk for fluoride toxicity is increased. Many prescription dental products contain up to 5 times more fluoride than over-the-counter toothpaste and rinses. Immediately call the Missouri Poison center at 1-800-222-1222 for expert advice.

Take The Missouri Poison Center With You

Emergencies don’t wait for you, so you shouldn’t have to wait to call for help. Get the Missouri Poison Center app with poison information and a link to the Poison Help Line. It is just a click away during the most stressful moments. Our registered nurses and pharmacists are here 24/7/365 days a year to help guide you through poison exposures and overdose emergencies.

Don’t wait. Download now.

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