Our teeth are constantly under attack by harmful acid caused by plaque. And while our teeth have a well-equipped defense system in tooth enamel, it can weaken over time. Enamel doesn’t regrow once it is gone, but we can take steps to strengthen what we have. One simple thing you can do today is to use fluoride.
Fluoride is a mineral that occurs naturally in most sources of water and some foods. Our bodies use it to remineralize tooth enamel, or reincorporate lost calcium and phosphate. This bolsters the enamel, making it more resistant to decay.
You can get fluoride from many sources, including toothpaste and mouthwash. Fluoride toothpastes are safe for use by adults and children, although you should be careful that your child use an appropriate amount for his or her age. Children need fluoride to develop healthy permanent teeth, and so fluoride toothpaste is especially recommended for them. Check for an ADA Seal of Acceptance to be sure of appropriate fluoride content.
Many communities fluoridate their public drinking water, and this is also a good, safe source. Fluoride levels are carefully controlled, and are usually less than one part per million. Other sources of water, such as wells, may contain higher levels of naturally-occurring fluoride, though. These sources are linked to over-exposure in children and can lead to enamel staining called fluorosis. Home use products and community drinking water don’t typically cause fluorosis.
Fluoride, properly used, has enormous benefits for your teeth. If you want to know more about how best to use fluoride in your family, please call Transcend Dental at 484.369.8625. We want to provide everyone in the Royersford, PA, area obtain the strongest smile possible.