Fluoride is absorbed easily into tooth enamel, especially in children’s growing teeth. Once teeth are developed, fluoride strengthens tooth structure, making teeth more resistant to decay. Fluoride also repairs or remineralizes areas in which decay has already begun, thus reversing the process and creating a decay-resistant tooth surface.
Fluoride helps prevent tooth decay by making the tooth more resistant to acid attacks from plaque bacteria and sugars in the mouth. In children under 6 years of age, fluoride becomes incorporated into the development of permanent teeth, making it difficult for acids to demineralize the teeth.
Fluoride is available in two forms: topical and systemic.
Topical fluorides strengthen existing teeth, making them more decay-resistant. Topical fluorides include toothpaste, mouth rinses and professionally applied fluoride therapies (gels, foams, rinses or varnishes). Many dentists give topical fluoride treatment to children up to age 18. For people with rampant cavities or predispositions to decay – such as people wearing orthodontic appliances and those with dry mouth – dentists may prescribe a special gel for daily home use.
Systemic fluorides are ingested into the body and incorporated into forming tooth structures. Systemic fluorides also can give topical protection because fluoride is present in saliva, which constantly moistens teeth. Systemic fluorides include public water fluoridation or dietary fluoride supplements in the form of tablets, drops or lozenges. However, keep in mind that the type of naturally occurring and added fluoride in the water supply can vary from area to area. Consult with your child’s pedodontist to learn which form will be best for your child based on your area.
The ADA recommends that adults and children two years and older use fluoride toothpaste bearing the ADA Seal of Acceptance. Consult with Midway Family & Cosmetic Dentistry if considering the use of toothpaste before age two. The ADA also recommends the use of fluoride mouth rinses, but not for children under six years old, since they may swallow the rinse.
If you have any questions of the type of fluoride you’re using or are looking for a fluoride treatment, call Midway Family and Cosmetic Dentistry in Alpharetta, GA. We offer Periodontal Treatments along with many other services you can find HERE. For an appointment, give us a call at 678-393-1868.
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Our office is located at 4928 Atlanta Hwy. Alpharetta, GA 30004.