Professional Dentists Explain Everything About Fluoride Treatments In Columbus
Fluoride, which can be found in many foods and water, was first researched in 1901. This vital mineral has been in use in dental practices for a long time and toothpaste companies began putting it in their toothpastes in the late 1950s. Crest was the first company to do it and they used ads with the art of legendary painter Norman Rockwell. It helped make them the one of the most popular toothpastes that is still used to this day.
There are also fluoride treatments where the dentist or hygienist will finish off a routine cleaning by covering your teeth with a special polish that helps keep them strong and cavity-free. You may be wondering about about what it is and what amounts either children or adults should get.
Here is all you need to know about fluoride treatments for children and adults.
Why Fluoride Is Applied
Your dentist or hygienist may see something during an exam that alerts them to your possibly needing extra fluoride treatments. The reasons include:
Your mouth makes saliva for a reason. It’s so that bacteria that would otherwise attack your teeth is washed away everytime you swallow. If your mouth is dry, that opens the door for bacteria to breed and cause tooth decay. Dry mouth can be caused by many things, including certain conditions, medication or even chemotherapy for cancer treatment.
Frequent Cavity History
If your dentist notices that you tend to have a cavity every year or so, then they may decide to give you more fluoride treatments in an effort to stave off those cavities.
This is called periodontitis, which is irreversible. It exposes the roots of your teeth and that can cause tooth decay. The fluoride can help strengthen your teeth.
Crowns, Braces, or Bridges
While these can make your smile look better, it can also cause bacteria to lurk around them and cause decay.
Is Fluoride Safe For Kids?
Young children should be exposed to a small amount of fluoride to help keep their teeth healthy as they shift between baby teeth and adult teeth. They should get their first treatment at around six months or no more than six months after you see their first tooth emerge. This should be done every six months. This way, they can have healthy teeth throughout their childhood. The most critical frame for them to get fluoride is between six months and 16 years.
It’s important to keep any fluoride supplements that you use at home out of reach of children, otherwise there is the risk that they could overdose, which can be very dangerous, and even in some cases, deadly. Always supervise them while they are brushing their teeth and make sure that they are spitting out the toothpaste foam and not swallowing it. Then enjoy simple dental visits with a very low probability of cavities.
Do Adults Still Need Fluoride Treatments?
Adults also get fluoride treatments as well. Once the treatment is finished, the only thing they have to do is not eat or drink for 30 minutes afterward. There are very few side effects, if any. If too much fluoride is used, it can cause teeth to take on a stained appearance. Sometimes there may also be white specks on teeth. There are some who say that fluoride may cause stomach issues, but nothing conclusive has been proven.
Many places all over the country have amounts of fluoride in their tap water. That includes Ohio, which began doing this in the 1970s thanks to a law that was enacted then. It’s a very small amount, around 0.7 milligrams per liter, according to Cleveland Water. This can help keep your teeth in great shape and prevent cavities, but it is not the only thing – you need to still brush twice a day with toothpaste to ensure that you have excellent oral health.
In general, fluoride is safe for people of all ages, but it just takes some careful monitoring of the younger ones to make sure that they don’t swallow the toothpaste foam or ingest any supplements. Other than that, it is an extremely low-to-no-risk way of keeping your mouth cavity-free or any possible decay from worsening. Your mouth will thank you for using it.
If you have any other questions about fluoride treatment, the staff at US Dental Medical will be glad to answer them for you. We have many years of experience in the field and have treated both children and adults for all kinds of dental issues. If you live in or near Columbus, Ohio, give us a call to make an appointment – 614-252-3181.