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Our Planet Needs Us To Stop Using Toothpastes With Microplastics And Microbeads


Our Planet Needs Us To Stop Using Toothpastes With Microplastics And Microbeads In Sunbury At Dental Couture
“There are plenty of fish in the sea” is an expression with which we’re all very familiar.

We should be. It’s been around since the 16th century, a period of scientific revolution, and the Reformation of Europe. Spain and Portugal ruled big time. Commercial capitalism began cutting swathes through feudalism and mercantilism with headstrong hedonism. It emerged myopic. Reckless and improvident, it continued unfettered and inattentive of the effluence of affluence as Queen Elizabeth I flushed the very first dunny.

Capitalism flushes supply and demand via individual profit and price, and it comes at a cost that’s far too high.

But we’ll never give it up. We’ll bend morals, statistics, borders and rules for it. We kill for it on a regular basis: animal and vegetable for mineral. Diffusively, allusively, illusively, elusively. Ethical investments are the whitewash of money as electric cars are the answer to the global warming of burning fossil fuels. Greenwashing is brain-frying in oily ambiguity. “Plenty of fish” is now nothing more than a dating site for the desperate and the idiom of the idiot.

The science-based app GoodFish exists because our oceans are so depleted of all that gave it balance and rhythm and all that sustained it. The buying and eating of seafood now demands that it be environmentally responsible, and we can’t even behave responsibly with that.

It’s almost impossible to get right. Available information is complex and often misleading. Choosing local over imported is not necessarily the case.

For example ‘ocean trout’ is the term used by Tasmanian growers using open-pen sea cages to raise large-scale stocks of a species unknown to Australian waters until the 1890s. It creates serious negative environmental impacts; and particularly on the last habitat of the endangered Maugean skate in Macquarie Harbour, western Tasmania.

So bizarrely, (given that it has to be frozen and shipped) the genetically distinct Ora King salmon from New Zealand is the responsible choice, while more than 80 organisations continue to demand the withdrawal of sustainability certifications from trout and salmon farmed in Tassie.

That’s just one example of the deep madness we continue to accept because we’re not going to stop eating trout and salmon. And fish farming isn’t going to stop, because we keep eating trout and salmon, because fish farming isn’t going to stop. You get the drift.

Pisciculture truly takes the p*ss pretending it’s the sustainable answer to overfishing.

And like that’s the only issue we’ve given our oceans to deal with.

More than 14 million tonnes of microplastics are on the sea floor. A recent study tells us that.

Comparatively, Sydney Harbour Bridge weighs a mere 52,800 tonnes. So visualise 270 of them, made of microplastic: that fragment of any type of plastic that’s less than 5mm long.

While you’re imagining that, smash ‘em up, and in your mind’s eye take a leisurely worldwide cruise, and along the whole way, keep dumping it all into the water.

Our Planet Needs Us To Stop Using Toothpastes With Microplastics And Microbeads In Sunbury At Dental Couture
A decade ago, it was estimated that there were 51 trillion individual pieces of microplastic in the deep. We’ve come a long way since then. More synthetic textiles, more fertiliser, more medications, and more, more, more stupid water bottles.

Microplastics exist because our obsession with money and the making of it makes it so.

Microbeads are the ‘justifiable’ microplastics of consumerism, which is the scapegoat sister of capitalism. Just like microplastics, they’re synthetic polymers made from petroleum – that fossil fuel we know so well. What differentiates microbeads from microplastic is that they’re smaller than a millimetre in dimension, manufactured, and multi-purpose.

It’s a dirty deed done dirt cheap.

They’re used as abrasives, exfoliants and to give texture. Pharmaceutical companies use them to make those mostly unnecessary drugs we’re prescribed easier to swallow than their research and ethics.

Another multi-use of microbeads is as a bulking agent, giving products more weight or volume than you’re actually paying for. The term ‘bulking’ is more marketable than ‘bullsh*t’ and being just one letter shorter saves billions in printing the required ingredient lists.

Microbeads are absorbent. That’s why they’re used to prolong shelf life, by trapping degradable ingredients. Because they assimilate surrounding contaminants, a single microbead can be substantially more toxic than the water surrounding it, once it’s released into the waterways.

We’ve been using, infusing and abusing this stuff since the 1990s.

Sporadically since the ‘60s, but the ‘90s was when biodegradable, naturally abrasive materials like cocoa beans, ground almonds, sea salt, ground apricot pits, pumice and oatmeal were all ditched because we’d already decided ‘greed is good’. ‘Profits over people’ was just the warm-up: ‘profits over planet’ was on its way, only we were too busy cutting costs, and thwarting and distorting moral codes to name it.

There’s a whole lot of bleating going on about the banning of microbeads, but like environmentally responsible seafood, it just doesn’t ring true. We’ve swallowed that bulk agent before, many times, in the realm of environmental protection. How can it be true, when the Netherlands apparently phased them all out in 2014 – and here we are a decade later, with countries still lagging, in a sea full of plastic.

We already know that less than 10% of plastic is recycled. The reality of that is it could actually be nil; we’re familiar with lies, damn lies and statistics. So regardless of your toothpaste tube being labelled as ‘recyclable plastic’ odds on it ends up as landfill, taking 500 years to decompose to – you got it – microplastic.

Do your part. Whether dentist or patient. And don’t demand to be spoon-fed. By doing your own research you’ll learn a lot more than just which toothpaste is the only one you’re going to be using from now on – you’ll understand why you’re doing it. Supermarkets won’t have them, and don’t whinge about the price. You’ve used enough cheap toothpaste in your life so it balances out. Go to healthfood shops where there’ll be eco-friendly packaging like glass jars, compostable boxes and recyclable aluminium tubes. Find the certified plastic-free toothpastes, and if they’re not so easy to get, ask a local retailer to stock them.

Or make your own. You can, you know.

Educate your friends and relatives. Order online in bulk if you have to, but there are better ways, always, if we simply put in the effort to achieve just one thing: revive our oceans.

There are plenty of fish in the sea – swallowing microbeads and microplastic. That’s the incontrovertible truth.

Disclaimer: The material posted is for informational purposes only and is not intended to substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Results vary with each patient. Any dental procedure carries risks and benefits. If you have any specific questions about any dental and/or medical matter, you should consult your dentist, physician or other professional healthcare providers.

 

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