In 1930, new dental products were arising, as well as extravagant claims about what they could do. The American Dental Association (ADA) took it upon themselves to implement guidelines to evaluate dental products for safety and effectiveness. The first ADA Seal of Acceptance was awarded in 1931. Even though the program is strictly voluntary, today, over 300 dental products carry the ADA Seal of Acceptance, including toothpaste, toothbrushes, dental flosses, and mouthwash.
When you see the ADA Seal of Acceptance on a dental product, you can trust that it is safe and effective. You can also trust that the product does what it says. Not every product that applies for the seal is accepted. Certain requirements must be met. When a company applies for the seal, they must:
• Submit a list of ingredients and other product information for review.
• Supply data and laboratory studies that support the safety, effectiveness, and promotional claims of the product.
• Conduct clinical trials that are in accordance with ADA guidelines and procedures.
• Show that their manufacturing and laboratory facilities are supervised properly and that they provide purity and uniformity of the product. They must also show that the product is made in compliance with Good Manufacturing Practices.
• Submit product packaging and labeling for review. They must comply with the ADA’s standards for truthfulness and accuracy in advertising.
Earning the ADA Seal of Acceptance is not the end of the process. The ADA Seal is only awarded for a five-year period. At the end of the five years, the company must reapply for the ADA Seal. If the company changes the composition of the product in any way, they must reapply for the ADA Seal.
The next time you are shopping for a toothbrush or floss, look for the ADA Seal of Acceptance. It’s like having your dentist shop with you!