Benefits of Fluoride Treatments
Fluoride is a natural mineral that helps build strong teeth and prevent cavities from occurring. It’s an essential oral treatment that has been used for decades to support healthy enamel. Fluoride can be found naturally in your body, or in rocks, soil, plants, and water. For oral health, turn to toothpaste, mouthwash, and daily vitamins to find small doses of fluoride treatments.
Cavities occur when bacteria build up on your teeth and gums and form a sticky layer of plaque. If the plaque is not removed from your teeth, it will begin to break down the enamel layer and erode your teeth and gums. Fluoride, however, will make your enamel stronger to prevent damages caused by those bacterias found in food and drinks.
Here are some reasons as to why fluoride is an essential part of your oral health:
When you schedule a cleaning appointment at the dentist, you will receive a fluoride treatment for your teeth. Fluoride treatments are treatments that contain a high dose of fluoride that is applied directly onto your teeth. The treatments will take the form of varnish and will be applied via a brush. These treatments are painless and usually quick, and the benefits from these in-office fluoride treatments can last for months.
With fluoride, you can find it in your everyday toothpaste and mouthwash, but the fluoride treatment your dentist will offer has a much higher does of fluoride that will offer rapid benefits. Once you are done with your fluoride treatment, you can immediately eat or drink most items. However, you will need to try and avoid all sticky and hot food/drink items for 4 hours.
When you make an appointment with your dentist, it is very important to be honest and upfront about your dental and medical health. This will help the dentist administer the correct amount of fluoride to your teeth.
It is also very important to let your dentist know if you are at high risk for developing cavities. Some signs you may be a high risk are:
- If you have an eating disorder
- If you lack proper dental care
- If you have a poor diet (high carbohydrates)
- If you have poor dental hygiene
- If you use drugs or alcohol excessively
- If you experience weakened enamel
- If you experience a dry mouth
Just like any other medicine, too much fluoride can cause negative complications to your teeth and oral health. Talking to your dentist about any cavity high-risk possibilities will help your dentist with your fluoride intake and will help get you the best treatment.
How Does It Work
Fluoride penetrates and becomes part of the enamel matrix making it more resistant to acid attacks.
Fluoride also helps the body use more minerals, like calcium, to repair weakened tooth enamel. Activating other minerals, like calcium, can help eliminate cavity-causing bacterias. When fluoride and calcium are used together they have great benefits, such as:
- They reduce the risk of cavities
- They slow the growth of cavities
- They delay the need for expensive dental work down the road
Children And Fluoride
As for your children, starting them on fluoride treatments at a young age will help the prevention of cavities. The fluoride they will use will be mostly found in the toothpaste they use, so make sure you talk to your dentist about the perfect fluoride toothpaste for your child. Then, make sure your child brushes their teeth twice a day, once in the morning once at night, and with adult supervision.
Benefits Of Fluoride Treatments
- Help reduce/prevent cavities
- Helps reduce hot/cold tooth sensitivity
- Helps extend the life of existing dental work (fillings, crowns, bridges)
Ask your dental team at your next visit if a fluoride treatment could help you.