Swallowing toothpaste - a bad thing for adults?
May 19, 2007 3:15 PM   Subscribe

I have swallowed my toothpaste since I was about 5 years old. I know you shouldn't swallow toothpaste when you're young (so it says here and here) but I have strong teeth, with no fillings or problems. does it have any effects later on in life on your body?
posted by wibbler to Health & Fitness (7 answers total)
Best answer: Unlikely. Swallowed toothpaste is a bigger problem for small children because of the potential renal toxicity of fluoride. For smaller kids, the dose per kilogram of body weight will be higher.

For an adult it's unlikely to cause problems. And if you're kidneys are fine now, they're likely to continue to be fine.
posted by scblackman at 3:35 PM on May 19, 2007

It looks like you narrowly missed the window for fluorosis, which causes mottling of the enamel on your teeth. I developed a toothpaste eating habit at a younger age and although my teeth are otherwise perfect (I even have room and then some for my wisdom teeth), my two upper front teeth are artificially resurfaced to cover the damage to the enamel.
posted by Derive the Hamiltonian of... at 4:38 PM on May 19, 2007

Eh, I didn't read your question carefully or check your links. You already know about fluorosis...
posted by Derive the Hamiltonian of... at 4:46 PM on May 19, 2007

Just out of curiosity, if you're worried, is there any reason you can't just stop swallowing your toothpaste and spit it out like most people do?
posted by decathecting at 4:58 PM on May 19, 2007

Some toothpastes are sweetened with sorbitol, which will give you the poops.
posted by boo_radley at 6:26 PM on May 19, 2007

What does having strong teeth have to do with swallowing your toothpaste?
posted by mulligan at 12:25 PM on May 20, 2007

Other toothpastes are sweetend with gobs of saccharin. Why are you looking for excuses to keep eating this gunk?
posted by NortonDC at 12:15 AM on May 21, 2007

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