The Benefits Of Fluoride For Your Dental Health
What Is Fluoride?
You may have heard about fluoride in toothpaste and not given it much thought. However, did you know that fluoride is very important for your dental health? A lack of fluoride can have a damaging impact on your teeth, causing tooth decay and gum disease. Fluoride is a mineral that occurs naturally. It is found in varying amounts in water and some foods, and depending in which area of the UK you stay in.
What are the Benefits of Fluoride?
Fluoride is vital for dental health. It strengthens your tooth enamel, making it more resistant to tooth decay. It reduces the growth of plaque and the ability of plaque to produce acids that cause tooth decay. Children up to age seven usually have better tooth enamel, if their teeth absorb fluoride from an early age. Using fluoride is safe, but using too much fluoride when teeth are forming causes dental fluorosis. Very fine white lines or flecks form on the surface of the teeth, which can only be diagnosed or treated by your dentist.
How does fluoride strengthen teeth?
When you use a product containing fluoride such as toothpaste, the fluoride ends up in your saliva. When your teeth are coated in that saliva, the enamel ends up absorbing the fluoride. The fluoride then bonds with the calcium and phosphate that naturally exist in your enamel to produce fluorapatite, which is a strong material that can resist decay and help prevent cavities.
Where can you find Fluoride?
Water and some foods contain fluoride. Most water supplies contain minimal fluoride. Adding fluoride to water in a process called fluoridation has proven to reduce tooth decay.
Most people get their fluoride from toothpaste. The amount of fluoride found in toothpaste is usually enough to fight tooth decay, provided you use good quality toothpaste. Dentists advise that children up to age seven should brush their teeth with only a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste.
If you are prone to tooth decay, you should consult your dentist about using fluoride supplements. Toothpaste with extra fluoride can help reduce tooth decay. Your dental practitioner may also be prescribed fluoride gels, fluoride varnish, mouthwash, and tablets. Fluoride varnish is painted on the surface of both adult and baby teeth. Fluoride treatments are very concentrated and so you don't have to take them regularly.
Visit us at the award-winning Berkeley Clinic in Glasgow should you have questions about fluoride or cosmetic dentistry treatments. Our friendly and helpful team of dental clinicians will gladly assist you. Contact us today and find out more.
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