Is fluoride safe? What are the differences between ingested fluoride and topical fluoride? When can my child have fluoride? Do I need fluoride at the dentist if I use fluoride toothpaste and fluoride in the water? It seems there is a lot of controversy regarding the safety of fluoride and Dr. Kuiper is going to put his expertise to use and inform us what’s what!
Fluoride is an elemental ingredient that we use to harden tooth structure. The tooth is made almost like a crystal and when the fluoride makes contact, it strengthens and hardens the tooth. When you eat candy, drink pop, etc., the bacteria want to break down the tooth structure. However, when there is a fluoride presence, the tooth structure is too hard for the bacteria to penetrate. It can prevent decay, but even better, it can reverse decay! These benefits are critical for those who have a lot of cavities, root exposure, or don’t do the best job with home care. For those people who get a lot of cavities along the gum line or in between the teeth, a fluoride supplement can help prevent those areas from growing or even turn back time to help the cavities heal. Our hygienists are able to paint fluoride right on the tooth surfaces as well. The fluoride that we provide is very safe. There is also a little bit of fluoride in your tap water, which is fine to ingest. The fluoride that we do in our office actually sticks to the teeth, goes into the teeth and only a minuscule amount even gets to your stomach.
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