Dental Fluoride 101: What You Need to Know
Fluoride treatment not only helps make your teeth more resistant to decay but can also repair them in the initial stages of damage. Although the mineral is typically found in water, salts and a variety of foods, this may not be enough. Especially for children and adults who have a moderate or high risk of cavities, or already have tooth decay. Your dentist may, therefore, suggest additional fluoride applications both as a preventative and remedial measure.
Types of Fluoride Treatments
There are a variety of ways in which you can get additional fluoride. These include:
- Drinking water with fluoride: Here in America, fluoride is added to water to help prevent cavities and tooth decay.
- Use a fluoride toothpaste or rinse: Studies show that this has brought about a significant reduction in the number of cavities. Do not, however, use a fluoride rinse (especially for children under 6) unless recommended by a dentist.
- Taking a fluoride supplement: Available by prescription only, they are typically recommended for children up to the age of 16, living in areas with less than adequate amounts of fluoride in their drinking water.
- Getting a professional fluoride application at your dentist: Applications range from fluoride gels and foams to rinses. Since the fluoride is applied directly to your teeth under the supervision of a dental professional, the treatment is known to deliver positive results.
Watch this video to learn more about the fluoride application options available to you at a dentist’s office.
Regular checkups are the best way to monitor the health of your teeth and help prevent cavities. Treatments for decay are also most effective when administered in the early stages. Your dentist will discuss your fluoride treatment options and suggest other preventative or remedial measures to help you maintain a healthy and happy smile.