Fluoride treatments and fluoride intake are the most common ways dentists and patients can prevent tooth decay. From professional fluoride treatments to over-the-counter toothpastes and rinses with high fluoride levels, fluoride is one of the best treatments for a variety of common dental issues.
Fluoride is a naturally occurring in soil, water and many foods, but often not at levels to protect or improve the health of your teeth. However, most public water sources add additional fluoride in order to bring the levels up to what the Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommends.
Studies have found that in counties where fluoridation of the water supply was rare, the rate of fillings, root canals and extractions were much higher compared to counties where fluoridation was common. In other words, the absence of fluoride in water or fluoride treatments can have a major impact on your overall dental health.
Generally speaking, adults can benefit from fluoride when it comes to fighting tooth decay and strengthening teeth. Additionally, people with the following oral health conditions are more susceptible to decay and may especially benefit from fluoride treatment:
- Dry mouth
- Gum disease
- History of frequent cavities
- Presence of crowns and/or bridges
- Undergoing orthodontic treatment
When it comes to the fluoride treatment itself, there are many ways to go about it. Fluoride can be applied to the teeth as a gel, foam or varnish.
We offer an in-office fluoride treatment, and you can also apply fluoride to your teeth at home via fluoridated toothpastes and mouth rinses. While there are some over-the-counter mouth rinses containing fluoride, they are usually at lower strengths. When appropriate, our dental office in Monroe, MI can provide prescriptions for higher strength fluoride treatments.
The American Dental Association (ADA) also recommends fluoride intake for infants and children between the ages of 6 months and 16 years. During this time, primary and permanent teeth are developing and fluoride becomes incorporated into the development of permanent teeth. This makes it difficult for acids to demineralize the teeth. Consult your dentist before incorporating any fluoride treatments for your children.
Make an appointment today to see if a fluoride treatment could benefit your overall dental health.