Some concerns have been raised about the safety of triclosan, an ingredient in Colgate Total toothpaste. At present it is believed to be safe in the amounts used, though the EPA is looking into data concerning the endocrine effects, developmental and reproductive toxicity, chronic toxicity and carcinogenicity. There are also concerns about the possibility of Triclosan contributing to making bacteria resistant to other bacteria.
Triclosan has been shown to be effective in preventing gingivitis. Colgate’s website refutes some of the research claims about carcinogenicity and endocrine effects, and offers the extensive research which supports the use of Triclosan in toothpaste. It remains to be seen then, whether further research will continue to vindicate its use in toothpaste.
This information comes from the United States Environmental Prtoection Agency factsheet on Triclosan, the the U.S. Food and Drug Adminstration Factsheet, and Colgates’s website.