The aloe vera plant’s list of healing powers is endless. It is a well-known fact that aloe vera is excellent when it comes to healing cuts and burns, and in soothing pain. Hence, aloe vera has been a common ingredient in skin ointments and creams.
Recently, aloe vera also gained popularity as an active ingredient in tooth gel. Just as in skin ointments, aloe vera when present in tooth gel, cleanses and soothes teeth and gums, and is effective in fighting cavities. The aloe vera tooth gel performs the same function as in toothpaste, eliminating disease-causing bacteria present in the mouth.
A new study by Stanford University compared the germ-fighting ability of aloe vera tooth gel to two commercially popular toothpastes, and revealed that aloe vera tooth gel is equivalent, and at times more effective, than the commercial brands, in controlling cavity-causing organisms.
The researchers reveal that aloe latex contains ‘Anthraquinones’, an anti-inflammatory chemical compound that helps in healing and arresting pain.
Moreover, as aloe vera tooth gel is less harsh on teeth, it does not have the abrasive elements typically found in commercial toothpastes, and hence is a better alternative for people with sensitive teeth or gums.
However, not all aloe vera tooth gels contain aloe vera in proper form. The products must include a stabilized gel located in the center of aloe vera plant, in order to be effective. The products should also abide by the manufacturing standards.
Also, Aloe should not be exposed to excessive heat or filtered during the manufacturing process, as this destroys or reduces the effects of certain essential compounds such as polysaccharides and enzymes, said Dilip George, Co-author of the study, Pushpagiri College of Dental Sciences, Tiruvalla, India.
“Fortunately consumers with sensitive teeth and gums have several choices when it comes to oral health, and aloe vera is one among them. If they require an alternative approach to oral hygiene, they need to speak to their dentist to ensure that it meets the standards of organized dentistry,” said Eric Shapria, MS, DDS, MAGC, MA, also an AGD (Academy of General Dentistry) spokesperson.