What Is Propolis Toothpaste?

Dee S.

Propolis toothpaste is toothpaste made from bee propolis, a substance comprised of a mixture of resin, oils, beeswax, and pollen. It is thought to be a natural way to clean teeth and maintain the health of gums. While people who use it claim that it lowers the likelihood of tooth decay and cavities in the teeth, some regulating bodies disagree — the American Dental Association in the U.S., for instance, has not approved any brands of propolis toothpaste. The toothpaste is not to be used by everyone; specifically, it should be avoided by people with certain allergies, individuals with asthma, and women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Individuals suffering from asthma should avoid using propolis toothpaste.
Individuals suffering from asthma should avoid using propolis toothpaste.

In most cases, propolis toothpaste is mixed with several other ingredients in addition to bee propolis. For example, many toothpaste brands contain a base of baking soda and water. In addition, other natural flavors sometimes are included. These may include mint, fennel, cloves, grapefruit, or tea tree oil.

Propolis is naturally secreted by bees.
Propolis is naturally secreted by bees.

It is possible to add propolis to any store-bought toothpaste as well. For example, propolis can be purchased from natural food stores as a paste. The commercial, store-bought toothpaste can be removed from the end of the tube and then mixed with the propolis. In some cases, it is possible to place the propolis-infused toothpaste back into the open end of the tube. In other cases, it may be necessary to keep the newly formulated toothpaste in a fresh, sealed container.

People who use propolis toothpaste believe that it may reduce the likelihood of tooth decay and cavities. Since propolis is thought to be an anti-inflammatory agent, it is believed to reduce a form of gum disease called gingivitis as well as inflammation of the bones and ligaments around the teeth, called periodontitis. Propolis toothpaste is also thought to work as an antibacterial. As a result, it prevents the growth of bacteria that can cause foul smelling breath. At a minimum, many people believe that it fights plaque build-up.

Propolis toothpaste should not be used by everyone. For example, people who are allergic to bee stings and bee by-products should avoid propolis-infused toothpastes; by its very nature, propolis contains bee pollen and traces of honey. It should also be avoided by people who are allergic to balsam, poplar, and conifer trees. There have been some reports that the product causes reactions in people who suffer from asthma, and caution is advised for pregnant or breastfeeding women, as full research has not been conducted on the effects of propolis on infants.

Breastfeeding women should not use propolis toothpaste.
Breastfeeding women should not use propolis toothpaste.

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Discussion Comments


I want to try propolis toothpaste but I'm having a hard time finding propolis toothpaste without tea tree oil. I'm allergic to tea tree oil so I need just propolis toothpaste.


@SarahGen-- Have you tried mixing those toothpastes together? I bet you can prevent irritation that way.

I mix baking soda toothpaste and propolis toothpaste. I simply take a bit of each on my toothbrush to brush my teeth. This combination works so much better than just baking soda toothpaste. My mouth feels so clean.

I used to often have swollen and bleeding gums. Propolis toothpaste has put an end to it together. I also recommended propolis toothpaste to my brother once who was suffering from an abscessed tooth at the time. Of course, he was taking antibiotics as prescribed by his dentist, but using propolis toothpaste really helped. His abscess disappeared in no time and never came back.


As far as I know, there are a few studies that have been done on propolis toothpaste and mouthwash. These studies have shown that propolis is beneficial and can prevent various types of oral infections. I remember specifically, that it was suggested for patients who recently had oral surgery, to reduce the likelihood of infection.

I don't think that propolis is less effective than fluoride toothpaste. I think the FDA has not approved this type of toothpaste, simply because they need to see more studies to confirm its benefits. I personally use propolis toothpaste. I have not stopped using fluoride toothpaste altogether, but sometimes, fluoride toothpaste irritates my teeth and gums. During this times, I switch to propolis and aloe toothpaste and my irritation disappears quickly.

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