Fluoride Action Network

An assessment of the current status of children’s toothpaste in Australia.

Source: Australian Dental Journal | By Barry D Smith, Catherine MacPhail, Joanna Russell
Posted on May 16th, 2021
Location: Australia
Industry type: Toothpaste


Background: Despite recommendations that pre-school children use toothpaste containing 500-550ppm of fluoride, there has been an increase in non-fluoridated toothpastes marketed for children. This study will investigate children’s toothpaste in Australia.

Methods: A comprehensive audit of all toothpastes marketed for pre-school children and available in-store in the Macarthur region of NSW, Australia was conducted. All toothpastes available for purchase were obtained and examined; size and price were catalogued, along with ingredients lists and fluoride levels.

Results: 107 individual toothpastes were identified in the audit, with 67 (62.6%) containing no fluoride. Of the 40 fluoridated toothpastes, only 11 (10.3%) contained the recommended level of fluoride of 500-550ppm. 22 (20.6%) of all toothpastes were made in Australia, all of which were non-fluoridated. Six (5.6%) of the toothpastes studied contained excessive levels of fluoride (1350-1500ppm). 17 of the 20 least expensive toothpastes contained fluoride, while 18 of the 20 most expensive toothpastes were non-fluoridated.

Conclusions: Despite expert recommendations, the majority of children’s toothpaste available in Australia contains either no fluoride or the wrong levels of fluoride. Further study is needed to determine why this change is occurring and what is influencing the increase in non-fluoride toothpastes on the market.

Keywords: Children’s Toothpaste; Fluoride Toothpaste; Non-Fluoride Toothpaste; Toothpaste.

*Original abstract online at https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/adj.12855