Chances are you’re already well aware that fluoride is good for your teeth and helps fight cavities. But when was the last time you considered whether you’re getting enough fluoride? Fluoride treatments at Lovett Dental North Heights through general dentistry can strengthen your teeth and may actually reverse the early stages of tooth decay.
What Is Fluoride?
Our teeth lose minerals throughout our lives as the acids from plaque bacteria and sugars in the mouth attack the enamel. This process is called demineralization. But these minerals are replenished as well, through a process called remineralization. Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that helps prevent tooth decay by making your teeth more resistant to the acids that break down enamel. Fluoride can also help replenish or remineralize the enamel in your teeth, potentially reversing tooth decay in its early stages.
Ways to Get Fluoride
Fluoride exists in many places in nature, and small amounts of it are contained within the water and many of the foods we eat. But most of us get only tiny amounts of fluoride unless we make it a special point of seeking it out. There are essentially two ways to get fluoride. The first is topical fluoride, which is applied directly to the tooth enamel. The second is systemic fluoride, which is swallowed. When you get fluoride both topically and systemically, you have the greatest chance to reduce cavities. These are some of the most common ways to get fluoride:
- Using toothpaste and mouthwash that contains fluoride
- Drinking fluoridated water
- Taking a fluoride supplement
- Receiving a fluoride treatment from your Texas dentist
Why Get Fluoride Treatment for Teeth
Many of us get fluoride through drinking community water that has been fluoridated (having fluoride added). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) calls fluoridation one of the 10 greatest public health achievements of the 20th century. Unfortunately, not every community has fluoridated water; in those that do, not everyone drinks enough water to impact their dental health significantly. This is one of the reasons why fluoride treatment from a dental professional can be so beneficial. The American Dental Association recommends fluoride and regular dental examinations and dental cleanings to maintain healthy teeth and gums.
Who Should Get Fluoride Treatment
Anyone can potentially benefit from fluoride treatment, but some individuals may see greater improvements than others. In particular, children can benefit from fluoride treatment because as their adult teeth are still developing, therefore the fluoride they receive can become part of their new teeth, strengthening them as they come in. That being said, both children and adults can benefit, especially those at a high risk of developing cavities. You may be at high risk of developing cavities if you:
- Have poor oral hygiene
- Frequently use drugs or alcohol
- Do not visit a dentist regularly
- Maintain a poor diet
- Have an eating disorder
- Suffer from dry mouth or decreased saliva
Fluoride Treatment and More at Lovett Dental North Heights
When you visit Lovett Dental North Heights, you and your family can receive the essential fluoride to keep your teeth and your family’s teeth healthy. Following a thorough oral exam that will determine your oral health and fluoride needs, your dentist will determine if fluoride treatments are right for you. If so, then you can receive either in-office fluoride treatment for your teeth or a prescription for a fluoride supplement that can be taken at home.
Ready to learn more about whether fluoride treatment is right for you? At Lovett Dental North Heights, our first and most important goal is preventing tooth decay and helping you maintain the healthiest teeth and gums. Contact us today by calling 832.626.2153 to schedule your next visit and talk to our team.