Most people consider fluoride to be a medication. However, it is a mineral present naturally in air, rock, plants, water, and soil. Sea water and fresh water contain fluoride in small amounts. Many drinks and foods also contain fluoride.

The mineral is also added to our drinking water or tap water. In addition, many products, such as mouth rinses, gels, and toothpaste, also feature fluoride. This guide will discuss some of the top benefits of fluoride for improving oral health.

Benefits of Fluoride in the Dental Industry

Fluoride is an essential component of maintaining excellent gum and teeth health. It also protects against cavities. Fluoride can also reverse early tooth decay symptoms and re-mineralize teeth. Since it reduces the possibility of serious oral complications, including periodontal disease, orthodontists recommend fluoride treatments. While these treatments may not be suitable for everyone, they benefit people at risk of tooth decay.

Why Is Fluoride Necessary for Teeth?

Teeth are solid, mineralized structures that surround a chamber with blood vessels and nerves. Our teeth are covered in enamel, the body's toughest component. Acid is one of the few things that can erode enamel. These acids, whether applied directly to the teeth or produced by bacteria, break down the tooth’s enamel. This process is called de-mineralization. Fluoride uses remineralization to reverse this process. Restoring minerals to enamel strengthens teeth and increases their resistance to acid attacks in the future.

Are Fluoride Treatments Only for Children?

In addition to the fluoride content you can get from water and over-the-counter products like toothpaste, dentists recommend getting professional-grade fluoride treatments. Fluoride treatments offer a high concentration of this helpful mineral in a single dose that can be applied every six months (or more frequently). Various factors can trigger cavities, such as consuming acidic beverages or food, poor oral hygiene, or dry mouth.

Fluoride applications can be beneficial for people of all ages. But since children are naturally at a higher risk for tooth decay, dentists often use it more frequently on young kids. Children are more likely to get cavities because they don’t have the necessary skills to remove dental plaque from every tooth. For this reason, dentists frequently advise parents to visit their dentist for effective fluoride treatments for children as young as two years.

Benefits of Fluoride for Senior Patients

Lack of saliva significantly increases the chances of developing cavities, and ineffective brushing can raise this risk even further. Professional fluoride treatments are very beneficial for senior patients with dry mouth syndrome or who don’t have the strength to brush their teeth effectively. Our dentist at The Villages in Lady Lake can help our senior patients get the fluoride they need to strengthen and protect teeth.

Fluoride Benefits for Adults

For healthy adult patients, professional fluoride treatments are also helpful. Due to sensitive teeth, cavity risks, and acid erosion, an average adult would need more fluoride. This mineral reduces tooth sensitivity by making the enamel and dentin harder to block off cold sensations. Contact a professional Edgewater dentist to receive fluoride treatments to help your natural teeth survive longer.

How Do Our Teeth Absorb Fluoride?

Our body can incorporate Fluoride either topically or systemically. Both these methods are beneficial for our tooth health. We can ingest fluoride through water, food, or oral supplements. The mineral contributes to our teeth' formation, strengthens the enamel, and makes it resistant to decay and erosion.

What Age is the Most Critical for Consuming Fluoride?

To prevent tooth decay, children and infants between the ages of 6 months and 16 years must get the recommended dose of fluoride. This is because, during these years, both primary and permanent teeth emerge. However, the American Dental Association (ADA) cautions against giving newborns and young children too much fluoride. The ADA advises against consuming liquid concentrates or powdered infant formula that you must reconstitute with fluoridated water.

The ADA advises young children to use a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste each time they brush. Parents should ensure that children are spitting it out. Kids under the age of two shouldn't use fluoride-containing toothpaste. Children under six should not use fluoride mouthwash unless a medical professional or a doctor recommends using it. In addition, parents should avoid giving nutritional supplements with fluoride to infants younger than six months.

Is Fluoride Effective for Maintaining Good Dental Health?

Yes. According to recent studies, topical fluorides, such as fluoride gels, toothpaste, and mouthwashes, are just as crucial for preventing tooth decay as they strengthen growing teeth. Adults may benefit from fluoride treatments if they are vulnerable to tooth decay.

Sjögren's syndrome, certain medications, and radiation therapy are all known to contribute to dry mouth disorders. In addition, a lack of saliva increases the risk of dental decay by preventing the washing away of food particles and neutralizing acids. Gum disease raises the risk of tooth decay by exposing teeth and dental roots to microorganisms. One cavity each year or every other year in the past could be a sign that you are the type of person who would benefit from more fluoride.

How to Get Fluoride Treatments

At-Home Rinses or Prescription Paste

Individuals who regularly receive fluoride varnish at a dental clinic don't require at-home care. However, prescription-strength fluoride supplements for at-home use, such as toothpaste or mouthwash, may be advantageous for high-risk patients.

In-office Varnish

A fluoride varnish treatment is a fluoride application made with professional strength by an experienced DeLand dentist. Using a little brush, your dentist may apply it to your teeth shortly after a dental cleaning procedure. The varnish is a clear liquid applied to the teeth and exposed root surfaces. Fluoride is absorbed and contributes to a greater rate of remineralization. Since in-office treatments frequently involve stronger applications, only a professional and experienced dentist can perform this.

How Can I Further Protect My Teeth?

You may help maintain the strength of your teeth by practicing good oral hygiene at home and scheduling routine dental cleanings and exams. In addition, discussing your dental health issues with your Titusville dentist is crucial.

What Takes Place During a Fluoride Treatment?

Your professional dentist will offer fluoride treatments in the form of a gel, a foam, or a highly concentrated rinse. The amount of fluoride in these treatments is substantially higher than that in your toothpaste or water. Applying it only takes a few minutes. Your dentist may instruct you to wait 30 minutes after the application and avoid eating or drinking. That will allow the fluoride to absorb correctly. Make sure you provide your complete medical history to the dentist. That will help the dentist choose the best course of action for you. Ask your South Daytona dentist if a fluoride treatment could benefit your current oral health.

Get the Best Fluoride Treatments from Universal Smiles Dentistry

Contact us today if you are looking for a professional, experienced dentist in Orange City. We are the best Edgewater and Orange City family dentists for all your dental needs. Contact us if you want to know more about how fluoride treatments can brighten your smile and treat various gum and teeth complications.