Does Fluoride Really Make a Difference?
In the past, cavities were a fact of life. But over the last several years tooth decay has been reduced dramatically due to fluoride. Fluoride is beneficial for adults as well as children. Research has shown that fluoride reduces cavities by up to 40% in children and 35% in adults.*
Is Fluoride Safe?
Yes. Numerous studies over the past 60 years have shown that fluoride at recommended levels is not only safe, but provides significant health benefits.*
How Does Fluoride Help Children?
Children benefit from fluoride both systemically (by ingesting fluoride) and topically (the fluoride that gets on their teeth). Systemic and topical fluoride work together to keep teeth strong. Fluoride works best in children while teeth are forming. This helps both primary (baby) and permanent teeth. Starting at birth, and until all permanent teeth have fully erupted, ingested fluoride helps strengthen teeth as they are forming. Topical fluoride helps people of all ages. Fluoride is the only known substance that will actually strengthen teeth and make them harder.
Does My Child Need Fluoride Supplements?
Most city water is fluoridated and is an adequate source of systemic (ingested) fluoride. If your family uses well water or bottled water, you should have your water tested to see if there is adequate natural fluoride, or if a fluoride supplement is needed. Check with your local Health Department or bottled water manufacturer for testing. If adequate fluoride is not present, your child may need a prescription fluoride supplement from your dentist.
Topical fluoride is provided by fluoridated toothpastes and rinses. Additional fluoride treatments are applied as needed by your dentist during regular check-ups.
Does Fluoride Benefit Adults, Too?
Yes! Topical fluoride helps people of all ages by stopping the progression of a newly formed cavity and preventing root cavities. Fluoride is also helpful for patients with sensitive teeth. A consistent daily use of topical fluoride will often dramatically decrease tooth sensitivity to hot and cold substances. At your regular check-up, we will evaluate your particular situation to determine if additional fluoride treatments are needed.
* Source: American Dental Association