Humans beings have long understood the importance of preserving their teeth for as long as possible. Ancient civilizations in Egypt, India, and Greece all came up with their own formulations for a tooth cleaning paste, the ancestor of our modern tubes which keep our ivories sparkling and white. But it seems that aside from cleaning our teeth, preventing cavities, and affording our mouths all kinds of benefits from fresh breath to reduced bacteria, there are a few other uses for toothpaste as its gently abrasive qualities can help us get out of all kinds of messes.
Leave it to homemakers and life-hackers to come up with a wide range of uses for toothpaste beyond our mouths. You have to wonder how many of these discoveries were accidental, but many of them are tried and true. Even dentists, whose job it is to remind us of the original purpose of toothpaste, are now well versed in the other uses for toothpaste. Dr. Victor M. Rosales, DDS admits that, “Besides keeping your teeth sparkly, toothpaste offers a wide range of cleaning, cosmetic—even healing abilities around the house.” But he warns, “just be sure to use the white pasty stuff, not gel.” So the next time you have a household cleaning job that your regular methods can’t handle or you’re struggling with scratches and cracks on tricky surfaces, be sure to scan the following list first before you despair. You never thought you’d say it, but maybe toothpaste is the answer.
1. Ink and Crayon Stains
Next time your petite Picasso gets her art all over your wall (or shirt) try rubbing a little toothpaste onto the affected area and wiping off with a soft sponge (or rinsing with water). Toothpaste’s ability to abrade stains off your teeth acts similarly on colors that stain painted walls or fabric.