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So what's "ribbon dental cream"? Well, apparently, Colgate was the first brand to be sold in a squeezy tube. Previous to that, "dentifrice" was sold in little cans that you'd rub your toothbrush in, like the way you do with shoe polish. In fact, our first post ever was for such a product, way back in 2009, remember? Gibb's dentifrice?
Interestingly, there was an episode of my favorite podcart, The Skeptic's Guide to the Universe, where the host, neurologist Steven Novella, mentions that he had recently been the keynote speaker at the Evidence Based Dentistry conference, right here in Chicago. Turns out that lots of the conventionally distributed wisdom about your teeth isn't based on actual evidence. During the "science or fiction" segment of the SGU podcast, one of the items was the fact that flossing doesn't reduce the incidence of cavities. It does help with bad breath, by getting rid of trapped food particles quickly, but statistically people who don't floss don't seem to have a greater incidence of tooth decay. Apparently, brushing will eventually get rid of bits of food, but not before they stink a bit. Crazy, huh? This is interesting, but I still floss, just for the stink factor, and it feels good.
You can listen to the episode at the following link, or better yet, download it, because their embedded player doesn't show the timecode, and you'll having a hard time shuttling to 01:12:00 to get to the dental part.
Somewhere else (I was unable to find where, but this Lifehacker article seems like it may be where I read it), I remember reading that your toothpaste choice has little to do with your dental health, apart from a flouride content of 1000 parts per million, which basically every brand has. The mechanical action of scrubbing your teeth is the biggest thing you do to keep your teeth healthy. Buy the brand that tastes the best or whatever is on sale. It hardly matters which one you use. Even brushing with water is much better than skipping it. All brands are pretty much the same.
But what will all the fi-fis say when they read this????