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Can Toothpaste Kill You!?

Warning: This blog post contains information that is not suitable for children.

A California family has been left devastated after their dairy-allergic daughter and sister died of a severe allergic reaction. Denise Saldate, 11, suffered a fast-moving anaphylactic reaction to milk protein from an unexpected source: a new prescription toothpaste.

“She was my sunshine, she was the light of my life,” Monique Altamirano said of her daughter in an interview with Allergic Living. Denise was 11 and the baby of the family, as the youngest of four sisters.

On April 4, Monique had taken Denise to the dentist. Since the girl had some spots on her teeth, the dental office suggested the MI Paste One brand of medicated toothpaste, saying this should help to strengthen the girl’s tooth enamel.

After years of reading toothpaste labels when Denise was a little girl and never seeing milk present, neither mother nor daughter had the least suspicion that milk exposure could be a risk. Because of that, “I did not think to look at the product ingredients,” said Monique. Neither did Denise: “She was just excited to have her special toothpaste,” said her grieving mother.

“Contrary to what everyone’s telling me, I feel like I failed her!” Monique said through tears.

Monique said the family has worked with an allergist since Denise was first diagnosed with a milk allergy as a 1-year-old. This mother has always diligently read food labels for Denise’s allergens (she had outgrown a few), and taught her daughter and her siblings to do the same.

Read more of the story and warning signs here:

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