Let's talk about the benefits of xylitol versus the benefits of fluoride -- and how xylitol is NOT an effective replacement of fluoride in toothpaste.
Xylitol is a popular alternative for people looking for healthy ways to improve their oral health in general. But it doesn’t replace the need for fluoride. You see, fluoride contains hydroxyapatite crystals. These tiny granules work to create a stronger, smoother surface on your tooth enamel and make your teeth less prone to decay. Essentially, they strengthen weak teeth to make them more resistant to acids.
On the other hand, xylitol helps repel plaque by preventing it from accumulating on teeth to begin with. It doesn’t remineralize enamel that has already been coated with buildup. So, although both xylitol and fluoride can be used for preventative purposes, they serve two totally different goals. A lot of dentists and hygienists recommend pairing both of them together for optimal results. One repels the plaque, the other repairs the areas damaged by it (before cavities start.)
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