What Is the ADA?

When you stroll down the dental aisle of your local supermarket or drugstore, how do you know what product to choose? How do you know if the claims on the packaging actually do what they say they do? We have likely all discovered at one time or another that truth in advertising isn’t always truthful. That is where the ADA, or American Dental Association comes into play. This patient-centered, science-based and ethically-driven association is here to let you know what products can be trusted.

The ADA is a non-profit organization whose job is to scientifically evaluate each product submitted for review to be safe and effective. Their standards are so high that they often ask companies to meet standards that are higher than what the law requires. Not every product that is tested by the ADA even meets the requirements. Since they are not paid for their endorsement, you can be assured that the claims on a product do what they say they do.

The ADA was founded in 1859, as a not-for-profit dental association. Today it has more than 157,000 members who are dentists. The ADA is the leading source of oral health related information for both dentists and patients. They have a code of ethics, and the dentists who belong to the ADA promise to do no harm, always do good and to treat patients fairly and honestly.

How do you know a dental product works? You will see the ADA Seal of Acceptance label on the product packaging. The ADA has researched over 300 oral health products, everything from toothpaste, dental floss, toothbrushes, mouth washes, denture products, and even chewing gum to help consumers know that the product has been tested and found to be safe and effective. Their mission includes making sure that consumers receive the highest level of patient safety and satisfaction. The ADA establishes how dental products and technologies should be defined and sets expectations on how certain products should perform and how these products and technologies work together.

Not only is the ADA the exclusive developer of dental standards in the U.S. but it also participates in international standards development. The ADA recognizes eight areas of dental practice: dental public health, endodontics, oral pathology, oral and maxillofacial surgery, orthodontics, pediatric dentistry, periodontics, and prosthodontics.

So the next time you are looking for a dental floss that works, or mouthwash that cleans effectively, be sure to look for the ADA Seal of Acceptance and you just can’t go wrong! If you have any questions or concerns about dental products, or would like to schedule your next dental visit, please call our Smiles Dental team at 360.200.6995 today.