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how we brush our teeth. in case you were wondering.

I'd been using normal toothpaste (usually one of the Crest Blindingly White kinds) for a long time and not thinking anything of it.  I have this one dead tooth in front that just drives me crazy, so I'd been throwing whatever whitening options I could at it in hopes that it would magically look less dead.  No such luck.  And in the meantime, I started developing this really sensitive, painful area on one of my teeth - what I suspected might be the onset of my very first cavity.  Over the course of six months to a year, the pain never got worse, but it never got better, either.

And then in trying to help some of Atticus' cavities heal a couple years ago, I had been making some diet and supplement changes in our household.  I was talking about it with a gal who cured her daughter's extensive tooth decay with the same protocol we were using, and she filled me in on their family's switch from toothpaste to bar soap, and how clean it left their teeth.  (She even blogged about it here, if you're wanting to know more.)  Unlike toothpaste, soap doesn't leave a film over the teeth, preventing remineralization.  Plus, depending on the soap used, the ingredients are way less sketchy, even if the kids swallow it.  (Which they often do.)




It all sounded a little woo-woo to me at first, but then again, I was entrenched in the world of trying to get my kid's teeth to grow back, so I was already in Woo-WooLand.  I figured we didn't have anything to lose by trying it out.

I ended up buying a couple bars of soap from LuSa Organics - an orange-cinnamon scented one, and a peppermint-tangerine one.  It took some getting used to on the kids' part, since it gets really sudsy and doesn't taste like SUPER STRAWBERRY ATTACK! (or whatever crazy flavor of toothpaste we were using at the time).  However, the adjustment was pretty minimal, and I absolutely won't go back!  The kids' teeth are so much cleaner and whiter now, and their breath is better.  (I haven't taken Atticus back to the dentist to get comparison X-rays taken, so I can't tell you objectively what's going on inside his teeth, but I can tell you that, for as doomsday as our dentist was about his teeth with the initial diagnosis, Atticus never has any tooth pain to speak of anymore.  None.)

Watching all of this unfold convinced me to make the switch myself.  So, yes, I too brush with bar soap now.  I also like to add a bit of baking soda to my toothbrush with the soap - it totally gets rid of any funky mouth tastes/smells (instead of just covering it up with mint flavor, like toothpaste does).  My teeth are so clean - virtually no plaque/tartar buildup anywhere in my mouth, even though I have a couple of orthodontic wires in there, and even though I haven't had my teeth professionally cleaned in probably three years.  And while it can't unkill my stupid front tooth, it does at least lift surface stains, so my teeth are actually slightly whiter now than before...  and my tooth pain disappeared.  A bar of soap costs a couple bucks and lasts the five kids and myself a good year and a half or more, which I consider a win, as well.

So there you have it.  You now know (some of) our unusual - but effective - hygiene habits.  Make me feel less alone - do you do anything weird in your bathroom?  (Hygiene-related, I mean!)

12 comments :

todd said...

alright. i'm game. once my toothpaste runs out, i'll switch over. maybe get a bar for you and me to use and the kids can continue using the one already in there. i would also like to use the baking soda, so either i can share you jar or we can wrassle up one for me. maybe we should consider more natural deodorants or something as well? since we're in woo-wooland already, amiright?

Amanda Cushman said...

I just placed an order for the soap and am pretty pumped to try it. Thanks for the suggestion! You always give such great advice.

Lissa said...

This is interesting! I was actually going to ask whether your husband was on board. :) We use "natural" toothpaste - do you find that soap is still more effective than that? Is it kind of like using a natural cleaning product verses just using vinegar that in almost all cases is just more effective, cheaper and more nontoxic?

paige said...

Amanda, I'm so excited you're trying it! Let me know how it works out for you!

paige said...

Lisa, I do feel it's much more effective than even natural toothpaste! Our kids were using Tom's, and in the past we'd used Jason and Trader Joe's brands too. This is far better than any of those, in my opinion.

paige said...

Autocorrect thwarted me again!! I'm sorry your name is misspelled above, Lissa!

Liza Watkinson said...

Interesting 😀!! How do you store the soap? And do you guys just brush on the soap to get it on the toothbrush or?

paige said...

Liza, we just keep the soap on a washcloth in the toothbrush drawer right now, but I'm realizing as I type this that it sounds like a pretty janky storage method, so I might get a soap dish... We just rub our brushes across the surface of the bar a couple times. While I'm clearly not a huge germophobe, I use the sides of the soap bar, and the kids use the wide top surface, if that makes sense. I mean, it's soap, so it's kind of self-cleaning, but I like having my own space on it because, well, kids can be gross sometimes. ;)

Liza Watkinson said...

Haha okay! Sounds good to me :) I'm going to try it out! And I also have a dead tooth in front that I've wished would look normal someday ;)

MamaMae said...

This is really incredible. Hmm...how does the soap...taste? 😜

paige said...

Haha, Alisha, it tastes... well, soapy. Not bad at all, it's really mild, but I definitely prefer to combine it with baking soda to kill the soap taste! The kids don't bat an eye at just the straight soap, though.

Jessica said...

If you do jump on the natural deodorant bandwagon (Todd), I'd like to officially endorse Schmidt's Natural Deodorant. I have tried lots of kinds, even making my own, and by the end of the day, all ended with you smelling...natural. Schmidt's does not! You don't smell, and if you do, you smell like YlangYlang and Calendula (if that happens to be the kind you buy). It's a little pricey, but effective!!!!
(and worth each one of those exclamation points)