Preserving Your Beautiful Smile Using Fluoride
Fluoride is a natural mineral that has been used to treat tooth enamel and fight cavities for decades. Fluoride is good at preventing plaque buildup by fighting off bacteria. Plaque erodes the tooth and eventually causes cavities if not taken care of. Worse than that, it can even infect the nerves of your teeth and cause severe pain.
Fluoride works in two ways:
Topical fluoride is applied directly to the surfaces of the teeth. It is then absorbed into the tooth. It’s commonly found in toothpaste and other oral hygiene products. Topical fluoride that is administered by your dentist is usually in the form of a foam, gel, or varnish and left on the teeth for a few minutes. This is normal for every dental cleaning.
Systemic fluoride is taken in by ingesting fluorinated water and other beverages, supplements, and food. Once ingested and absorbed, systemic fluoride makes its way through your entire body. This allows it to get to un-erupted teeth that are still below the gums. It is also transferred to your normal teeth by your saliva.
If your daily fluoride intake from food and water is not enough, you may still experience tooth decay. Our staff may recommend some fluoride treatments if you are experiencing any of the following:
- Pits and fissures on the chewing surfaces of teeth.
- Exposed and sensitive roots.
- Poor oral hygiene.
- High sugar and carbohydrate intake.
- Low fluoride intake.
- Low saliva flow.
- Tooth decay.
It is important to note that fluoride alone will not eliminate all tooth decay. Make sure to maintain good oral hygiene habits.