What is fluoride and why do I need it?
Fluoride is a natural mineral found within the earth. Fluoride is also present in some foods that we eat, such as fish, and also present in our water supply. Fluoride has many benefits for your teeth, but studies have long shown the use of fluoride as an effective agent in reducing tooth decay. Fluoride prevents decay in both teeth that are currently formed as well as in teeth that are still forming in children’s mouths. When teeth start to break down, due to acid demineralization, fluoride can help strengthen the teeth and prevent lose of enamel.
Not only does fluoride help prevent decay, it will also:
- Kill bacteria within plaque and slow the colonization of pathogens
- Reduces the volume of plaque
- Decreases sensitivity
Who benefits from fluoride the most?
- Chemotherapy and radiotherapy patients
- Taking multiple medications
- Have crowns
- Have old fillings
- High sugar diet
- Tooth sensitivity
- Removable appliances
- Dry mouth
- Receding gums
The Only and BEST prevention for root cavities is fluoride, and the best and most reliable fluoride delivery is immediately after your cleaning. This is due to the natural biofilm layer that lies over the teeth, which your body will re-coat with within 24 hours after your cleaning. The best time for fluoride is at the end of your cleaning since fluoride does not penetrate the biofilm layer well. This can come in the form of a varnish.
Paint-on fluoride varnish is sticky, so it attaches to the teeth easily and makes the outer layer (enamel) of the teeth harder, helping to prevent cavities. All patients who have had a lot of dental work in their mouth also can benefit from fluoride as it protects the margins of the dental work where decay can easily start again. Fluoride varnish can reduce teeth sensitivity.
Dr. Chao or Dr. Nguyen can also determine your risk for cavities and whether your teeth would benefit from a fluoride supplement. If Drs. Chao or Nguyen finds that your teeth could use a boost, we’ll recommend a simple solution. These measures may include over-the-counter or prescription therapeutic products such as fluoride mouth-rinses, gels or antibacterial mouth-rinses.
To learn about the products that we use in our office, please visit www.carifree.com
To listen to an informative podcast about fluoride and dry-mouth, click on: