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There are at least three major ways in which a good toothpaste can help you. For one, a good toothpaste can help you avoid tooth decay. This is not something to be taken lightly. Tooth decay, whenever allowed to take place unmitigated, almost always results in a lot of pain latter. Yet given our modern diets, it is almost inevitable that we should suffer from tooth decay.
A considerable portion of the sugar in the foods we keep on eating ends up being stuck on our teeth. This sugar is just what various bacteria that cause tooth decay need to survive and thrive. And the problem with tooth decay, once it has started, is that there is never looking back.
1) The options on the table, in terms of treating tooth decay, will tend to be very few - just two, in fact. One is that of having the tooth drilled, to get rid of the decayed bit, and then filling that drilled part with a filler material, like, say, mercury. This is only if the problem is caught early on. The procedures involved here are not pleasant at all. They can be downright painful at times. The other option is that of having the decayed tooth extracted. Just the sound it makes you know that it won't be a pleasant operation. For all purposes and intents, it is an amputation and you leave the dentist's chair with one tooth less. But a good toothpaste can help you avoid all that unpleasantness.
2) A good toothpaste will tend to contain ingredients to both chemically combat plaque and help in its mechanical cleansing, in a situation where it is the unmitigated build-up of plaque that causes tooth decay. A good toothpaste -as the second major factor - will also help you avoid bad breath. This is something it does chemically, through its ingredients; which are meant to neutralize the bad smell that could potentially come out of your mouth. A good toothpaste will also tend to contain aids to thorough cleaning of the teeth, to help rid the teeth (and the entire oral area) of bacteria; whose continued presence is sure to cause bad breath. Thus, in the cases where the bad smell that manifests as 'bad breath' comes from other parts of the body, the toothpaste contains chemical ingredients to neutralize it. But where that smell is coming directly from the mouth, the toothpaste contains oral cleaning aids, which would rid the mouth and its immediate surroundings of the bacterial life whose proliferation is what leads to the bad breath problem.
3) A good toothpaste problem will also help you, albeit in a small way, to combat the teeth discoloration problem. It is a well established fact that our teeth tend to get discolored with time. We need something to mitigate this trend, otherwise our teeth lose sheen with time. That is where a good toothpaste comes in. It will tend to contain ingredients, in the form of abrasives, that can completely eliminate mild cases of teeth discoloration, while at least mitigating the effects of worst case teeth discoloration; like that which is caused by fluorosis.