Boka Oral Care
Dr. Lara Coseo DDS, FAGD – Author –
Boka is a fledgling brand (2016) that specializes in the production of oral care products. By illustrating the connection between oral health and overall health, Boka aims to inspire consumers to higher levels of wellbeing.
Boka’s brand message aligns well with scientific research linking oral diseases with health problems throughout the body. The mouth is the gateway to the body, and you simply cannot have a healthy body with an unhealthy mouth. The Boka products include both electric and manual toothbrushes, a “natural” toothpaste, floss, and tongue cleaner. The various products are available for a single purchase or a subscription service.
Dr. Lara (DDS, FAGD) tested out the complete line of Boka oral care products including the electric toothbrush, manual toothbrush, Ela Mint toothpaste, tongue cleaner, and floss.
Subscription Service Oral Care Products
Boka ships their products based on the proper usage amount, so when you receive yours, it helps you gauge whether you are using too much or not enough of each product.
In addition to this “training” ability, the subscription reminds you to change out your manual toothbrush or electric toothbrush heads on a consistent basis. Most people don’t “run out” of these. They simply use them for far too long.
Toothbrush bristles that are worn and frayed are unable to properly remove dental plaque from the teeth. They also become dirty and filled with bacteria over time. While you can sanitize the brush by tossing it in your dishwasher, you cannot rejuvenate worn-out bristles. They need replacement.
While I personally do not subscribe to these types of services (I am constantly trying out new oral care products and would have piles upon piles of toothpaste and floss if I subscribed), I do recommend them for patients who fall into certain categories.
Patients who need a specific product but admit they will grab the first toothpaste they see on the shelf at the grocery store.
Patients who admit they quit flossing because they ran out and never got around to buying more
Patients who need the added incentive of “investing” in their oral care products (as opposed to just grabbing something quickly off the drugstore shelf) to maintain the diligence necessary for good oral health.
Boka Toothbrush Review
I love this toothbrush! I have used many electric toothbrushes, (Philips Sonicare, Oral B Sonic Complete, quip, etc…) and this might be my favorite. I personally love the simple design because I’m not a bells and whistles-type person.
The shape of the toothbrush head is small and comfortable, and the bristles are soft. It feels like there is no possible risk of brushing “too hard” with this toothbrush. I have one area of gum recession/root exposure and sensitivity, and this toothbrush feels better than any other in this specific site does. Upon my first use, I thought the bristles and vibration seemed a little more ticklish than normal, but I’ve gotten used to that after consistent use. The bristles contain activated charcoal, which research upholds as containing some antibacterial properties. This means this toothbrush is less gross than the average.
Boka Ela Mint Toothpaste Review
Boka Ela Mint toothpaste’s “Unique selling point” is its use of Nanohydroxyapatite.
Boka Ela Mint toothpaste is fluoride and SLS free. Many kinds of toothpaste are fluoride and SLS free, but few contain what Boka does have, and that is nanohydroxyapatite. Nanohydroxyapatite, or NHA, is a powerful remineralizing agent. This means that it strengthens and hardens enamel, fights cavities, and reduces sensitivity. All research supports the claim that NHA is just as good at remineralization as fluoride. When I came across nHa in my own research a few years ago, I begin purchasing a Japanese brand of NHA toothpaste on Amazon.
All research supports the claim that NHA is just as good at remineralization as fluoride.
I personally use fluoride in various forms and have no fears of toxicity or any ill effects. I agree that it can be toxic in extremely high amounts, and I believe in the cavity-fighting benefits it has provided for millions of people since community water fluoridation began. I respect anyone’s wishes to avoid certain ingredients, and I’m thrilled to have an alternative product to recommend, especially one that is made in the U.S.A. The toothpaste also contains other natural ingredients with claims to antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory activity: aloe vera, xylitol, and green tea. Because Boka does not contain SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate), it is not super foamy like “regular” toothpaste. This is a great benefit for anyone with sensitive oral tissues or mouth sores. It won’t burn or sting! It just might take you a little while to get used to the different sensations as you brush. The great news is that you don’t need that foaming action to make your teeth feel squeaky clean. Boka definitely delivers a clean feeling without the foam!
I have to start with a disclaimer that I am a Cocofloss devotee. I have a few open contacts and a couple of black triangles, and I love a hearty string of floss. Boka floss is the first brand I have found that gives Cocofloss a run for its money. And at $5/30 yards, it is much less expensive than Cocofloss.
When I use Boka floss, It just feels like it is cleaning the sides of the teeth very effectively. . . maybe it’s the beeswax coating. Floss is the only thing that will remove dental plaque from between the teeth. Water flossers and interdental brushes can get some of it, but only flossing with the correct technique will remove it all. Boka floss has just enough texture that it disrupts any plaque from the tooth surface quickly and without too much force.
Because of its thicker texture (which is why I love it), some people may find it difficult to use. This would include those with tight contacts between the teeth or severe crowding.
Boka products overall are wonderful. I’ve already said how much I love the electric toothbrush. My husband asked if he could have the electric toothbrush (with the second replacement head included, of course; even married people shouldn’t share toothbrushes), and after using it, I think I will say no so that I can make it my everyday toothbrush. I’m also happy to have a domestic version of nHa toothpaste and a less expensive alternative to Cocofloss.
I was a little apprehensive about the tongue cleaner because it said “stainless steel” on the box. It has a very user-friendly and simple design with two handles connected to the sides of the stainless steel cleaning section. Surprisingly, it did not feel too hard or aggressive to clean the tongue. I typically tell patients to avoid metal tongue “scrapers”, but I would have no problem recommending this version.
The manual toothbrushes have a simple design with the same activated charcoal coating and the same gentle bristles. I always prefer an electric toothbrush, so my opinion on any manual toothbrush is a little lackluster.
I do like this line of products and will happily recommend it as my preferred nHa-containing toothpaste and electric toothbrush.
Dr. Lara Coseo, (DDS, FAGD) is a 2004 graduate of Baylor College of Dentistry in Dallas, Texas. Having practiced general dentistry for 13 years, Dr. Lara currently serves as an Associate Professor at Texas A&M College of Dentistry.