You rarely hear the word “toothpaste” without it being preceded by “fluoride.” As the Winston-Salem Dental Group dentists explain, “fluoride toothpaste” is ubiquitous for good reason.
Fluoride is a critical mineral that helps your teeth stay strong. It is found in some foods and water and makes toothpastes more effective at fighting cavities. Fluoride helps teeth by making them stronger and more resistant to the dangerous acid that is formed by bacteria. One of our dentists may recommend a fluoride treatment in addition to your dental cleaning.
The fluoride used in in-office treatments comes in either a gel or foam, and may be available in several flavors. The fluoride is applied directly to teeth through the use of a plastic dental tray that fits over your teeth. The tray is kept in your mouth for just a few minutes. Fluoride treatments are an easy and painless way to strengthen your teeth and maintain an attractive smile.
While many of our patients understand the importance of fluoride treatments in fortifying developing teeth in children, some do not realize the importance of fluoride for adults. For this reason, fluoride treatments are sometimes recommended to adults who are susceptible to enamel wear or tooth decay.
If you wonder if you or your child is getting enough fluoride, communicate with us about fluoride supplements. We will let you know if they are necessary and determine the precise supplement dosage. Don’t give your child fluoride supplements without your dentist’s counsel. Too much fluoride can lead to fluorosis which discolors teeth and, ironically, can make teeth more susceptible to dental caries.
A factor that affects the amount of fluoride your children are receiving is where you get your drinking water. Your children may not need fluoride supplements if they drink tap water from a fluoridated North Carolina municipal water supply. If your family only drinks bottled water without fluoride, you may want to think about supplementation. Keep in mind that the FDA does not require bottled water companies to list the fluoride content on the bottle label and many brands sold in the Winston-Salem area do not contain fluoride.
At The Winston-Salem Dental Group we provide general and cosmetic dentistry, and have a team of in-house specialists. Schedule an appointment with us today.
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