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How Fluoride Improves Your Teeth and Oral Health

How Fluoride Improves Your Teeth and Oral Health

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Many adults remember their dentists telling them about the importance of fluoride as kids, but we often forget that it continues to be important after we’re all grown up. Take a moment to review the importance of fluoride, so you and your family can maintain good oral health and keep flashing those pearly whites with pride.

What is fluoride?

Fluoride is a common, natural mineral found in soil, water, and some foods. Because of its health properties, it’s frequently added to drinking water, foods, toothpaste, and other oral hygiene products.

How does fluoride help teeth?

In small doses, fluoride helps to strengthen and protect the tooth enamel, the hard outer surface of your teeth.  Over time, bacteria and sugars create decay-causing acids, and the enamel of your tooth begins to wear away. Fluoride helps to repair weakened enamel and helps teeth to resist further decay. The American Dental Association[1] (ADA) calls it “nature’s cavity fighter.”

Fluoride is particularly important for children because new teeth exposed to fluoride develop shallower grooves, making it easier to remove cavity-causing plaque. Fluoride even helps protect babies’ teeth before they break through the gums. Most babies get fluoride in their body through water or food.

How can I get enough fluoride?

Most Americans can get fluoride by drinking water. The ADA reports[2] that drinking community fluoridated water helps to reduce cavities in children and adults by 25 percent. However, you should also brush your teeth twice a day with a toothpaste containing fluoride and use fluoridated mouthwash afterward.

Your dentist may also apply fluoride directly to your teeth with a rinse or gel if you are at particular risk for developing cavities. You may also need to take a prescription-only fluoride supplement if you live in an area without sufficient fluoride in the community drinking water or cannot drink the tap water at all.

How can I ensure that my children get enough fluoride?

Like adults, children can get fluoride through drinking water and toothpaste. If your children are under age 7, supervise their brushing daily. Ensure that they only use a pea-sized amount of toothpaste and that they don’t swallow it. Fluoride is safe, but children under 6 and under should have no more than 1 milligram per day. The ADA does not recommend mouthwash for young children unless their dentist advises it.

[1] https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/f/fluoride

[2] https://www.ada.org/en/public-programs/advocating-for-the-public/fluoride-and-fluoridation/5-reasons-why-fluoride-in-water-is-good-for-communities?_ga=2.139843386.809992615.1559050165-250103139.1559050165[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

  • My hygienist was Claudia, and I now have a best friend forever. She was so welcoming and kind, put me completely at ease, walked me through all of the procedures, costs, and reasons why, and introduced me to everyone who walked in or by the door. Dr. Smith was equally as helpful and amazing. Every person went out of their way to ensure my comfort and understanding. I NEVER write reviews, and was so impressed that I couldn't wait to get home and write one!

  • We love IHDC! They do everything possible to ensure our safety, and Alaine is an absolute gem! She treats my daughter with the patience of a saint and we love her for it! The whole team is amazing!

  • If you’re a believer in good vibes and positive energy then this is the place for you. Everyone here is so warm & inviting. They really do feel like family, ya know, the ones you actually like! I’ve been going here for years but when I had my daughter, there was no question about where i would take her for her dental needs. They are so great with her and she is never nervous when we go because they just radiate positivity and make her feel so calm and relaxed. I can’t recommend them enough. Oh, they are also really great with Botox 😉

  • Could not possibly thank Dr. Houck, Gabby, and staff enough for the wonderful care I receive. In addition to excellent dentistry, their compassionate approach and communication really sets them apart. They are always kind, caring, and take time to explain things in detail. Easy to contact the office with any needs, and they are always quick to respond. Highly recommend.

  • Just wanted to leave a quick review on Claudia! She is an excellent dental hygienist. She is very thorough with her cleanings, she has a sweet personality and takes the time to explain things to you. I 10/10 would recommend Claudia to all of my friends and family.

  • Amazing place. Started taking our family there in 2014. Professional, kind, and most importantly excellent at every level of service.

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