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Scared to brush my teeth

outdamnspot

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I have severe OCD, on top of CFS, and am aware this is likely a mix of phobic anxiety with a rational fear. However, once I started to become a lot more intolerant towards foods a few months ago, I also stopped using toothpaste out of fear that any foreign substances could potentially trigger a crash (which becomes traumatizing when it happens enough, and your threshold for experiencing one is so low).

At the time, I was using Earthpaste, a clay-based toothpaste, and don't recall actually having any issues with it, but I was crashing so frequently (due to foods) that I got scared and stopped using it anyway, and I worry about some of the ingredients like the essential oils. I started just dry-brushing, but my teeth never feel *clean* doing that and I've also started to notice some worrying gum recession (honestly, once my CFS became severe 3 years ago, I just never presumed I would live very long and got so depressed I stopped paying much attention to oral hygiene).

I began researching alternatives but my problem is my anxiety will prevent me from trying any. What I came up with was:

1. Calcium Carbonate .. recommended by @Gondwanaland .. I ordered a bottle, except she mentioned it was necessary to mix it with Magnesium Oxide. Since I do so badly with Magnesium supplements in general, I got scared off trying, though I wasn't sure how much MgO would actually be absorbed if it's just being used to brush your teeth?

2. Baking soda .. people in the MCS Facebook group said they use it to make their own toothpaste, but after reading @Wonkmonk 's experience today I'm scared to try too.

Aside from that, every other 'natural' toothpaste has multiple ingredients which makes me hesitant to try any because I wouldn't know what I'm reacting to. I've wondered if I could make my own just using something like Bentonite Clay or Redmond Clay (the basis for Earthpaste) without any additional ingredients?

Anyway, this is causing me a lot of anxiety because I know I really need to do something but I feel stuck.
 

Shoshana

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I wonder about using just a tiny amount of baking soda, or a plain sea salt? to water.

To either brush with, even tho it would not be a paste,
or to simply swish in your mouth, might be something you could try?

It is very understandable, the combination of OCD, together with very rational reasons for concern, make it very difficult to try anything.
Thinking of you, @outdamnspot
 

Shoshana

Northern USA
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I have now gone and read a bit of the problem wonkmonk had, and I didn't mean to use an entire spoon of baking soda or salt,

I meant just a tiny bit in a cup of water.
NOT enough to make any thick paste, just to make the water a bit more cleansing.

You also are not the same person as them, and are not likely to have the same problems,

and most people tolerate the small amount of saline.
Even those of us who do not tolerate a large number of other common things.

But I do understand if you don't feel okay about trying it.
 

Neunistiva

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For what it's worth I went the other direction - I am worried my tooth will start to ache and I will have to go see a dentist, which is nearly impossible since I am bedridden and crash badly every time I'm carried out of the house.

So I use a commercial brand toothpaste with lots of fluoride, I put twice the recommended amount and brush my teeth for 10 minutes with electric toothbrush (with earplugs on).

For what it's worth even though I have nasty IBS and can't eat 90% of food out there without wrecking my digestion, toothpaste never crashed me or caused any issues.
 

outdamnspot

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outdamnspot

Senior Member
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788
For what it's worth I went the other direction - I am worried my tooth will start to ache and I will have to go see a dentist, which is nearly impossible since I am bedridden and crash badly every time I'm carried out of the house.

So I use a commercial brand toothpaste with lots of fluoride, I put twice the recommended amount and brush my teeth for 10 minutes with electric toothbrush (with earplugs on).

For what it's worth even though I have nasty IBS and can't eat 90% of food out there without wrecking my digestion, toothpaste never crashed me or caused any issues.
Yeah that's why I'm worried now .. because I'm bedridden too and if anything goes wrong, I couldn't get to a dentist. I feel really stupid because I knew I should be brushing my teeth but was honestly just too sick and depressed to care anymore; my saving grace is probably that I consume almost no sugar, so likely haven't developed cavaties, but the gum recession looks horrible and is depressing to see.

I also don't even think I react to toothpaste either and it's likely paranoia. One big problem is that right before bed, I will take my sleep supplement (time-release Vitamin C) which triggers a crash, and then have to eat so I can fall asleep. Once I've done that, I just don't want to get up again because it stresses my body and I just want to go to bed. So that's how I got into the habit of not brushing .. because it seemed pointless to brush *before* I eat, but then I want to avoid a crash by doing it after I eat.

I've crashed now anyway so guess I will force myself to try the earthpaste before I can make my own.
 

Wonkmonk

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2. Baking soda .. people in the MCS Facebook group said they use it to make their own toothpaste, but after reading @Wonkmonk 's experience today I'm scared to try too.
I think there is no need to be scared and trying it is a small risk. The effects in my case were still not too severe and went away after a few hours. Everyone is different, and maybe you don't react at all.

But maybe it's good to start with a small amount.