Did you know dental cavities are the most common disease in children and adults worldwide?
One of the easiest, most accessible and safest ways to prevent cavities for children is by making sure we are using products with fluoride. It can help prevent tooth decay and strengthen enamel.
Q:Where do I find it?
There are many sources of fluoride readily available. The most common are fluoridated water and toothpaste. It’s also naturally occurring in many foods and beverages, so it’s important to make sure your child has a balanced diet with plenty of calcium and vitamin D. Sometimes, we recommend a topical fluoride treatment at various stages of your child’s dental development.
Q: Why is Fluoride so important?
Fluoride is a natural mineral that, when added to oral care, helps to strengthens teeth and prevent cavities. This is why it’s considered a benefit to a number of community water systems worldwide for more than 70 years. Since the inception of community water fluoridation, though, the practice has been controversial.
Q: Is fluoride bad in any way?
Short answer: NO!
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention confirms that the safety and benefits of fluoride are well documented, and in the amounts in toothpaste and household tap water provide.
It’s not just the CDC that upholds the merits of fluoride, though; according to the ADA, more than 125 organizations around the world also recognize its safety and value. These organizations include the ADA, the American Medical Association and the World Health Organization.
Q: Can you get too much of a good thing?
Like anything else, you want to make sure your child is getting fluoride in appropriate doses. After many decades of research, the main “risk” linked to too much fluoride is something called dental fluorosis. Dental Fluorosis is a cosmetic condition – the appearance of faint white lines or streaks on the teeth – that happens when very young children ingest too much fluoride from any source, over a long period of time while the teeth are developing under the gums. This is why it is important to supervise them while they are brushing to ensure they are spitting out toothpaste along the way.
To very important notes from the ADA:
- Once teeth break through the gums, you cannot develop fluorosis
- Fluorosis isn’t a disease and doesn’t affect the health of your teeth. In most cases, the effect is so subtle that only a dentist would notice it during an examination. The type of fluorosis found in the United States has no effect on tooth function and may make the teeth more resistant to decay.
Still want to know more? Give us a call. We can answer any questions or set you up with an appointment to meet with Dr. Diba who can answer any questions you might have. Or, you can leave us a note in the comments below or reach us on Facebook.