At Kevin Spees Dentistry, our patients often come to us with questions and concerns about fluoride. Many people see "fluoride" listed on their toothpaste or mouthwash or hear about it on the news but have no idea what it is or what it does.
What is fluoride?
Simply put, fluoride is a mineral that strengthens the enamel of your teeth and improves resistance to certain acids that may cause tooth decay. Fluoride is often found in dental treatments and some drinking water. Fluoride can be extremely beneficial as its strengthening effects are long-lasting and will continually strengthen enamel over time.
Is fluoride safe?
Yes! In general, fluoride is safe and provides a long list of oral health benefits. The amount of fluoride found in drinking water is not harmful and will help keep your teeth strong and healthy.
Dental products such as toothpaste and mouthwash contain high levels of fluoride, so it is important not to swallow or consume too much of these products accidentally. Consuming excessive levels of fluoride can lead to a rare condition called fluorosis, which may leave permanent pits in the teeth. Fortunately, this condition is very uncommon. As long as you or a child is not consuming or accidentally swallowing large amounts of toothpaste or mouthwash, fluorosis should not be a concern.
What do fluoride treatments do?
At Kevin Spees Dentistry, Dr. Spees and our skilled hygiene team will often recommend a fluoride treatment during your regular checkup. This treatment is available in a gel, varnish, or foam. Receiving a fluoride treatment is especially important if your teeth are prone to decay, or if you do not receive an appropriate amount of fluoride from other sources.
Fluoride works to revitalize the enamel, which can help prevent decay and cavities. In children, fluoride also strengthens the teeth as they develop to ensure they are healthy and strong. Dr. Spees will often recommend fluoride treatment for children during their yearly visit to help protect their new permanent teeth.
To learn more about fluoride treatments, contact our office at one of our two convenient locations. Our Zionsville office can be reached at 317-873-2206, or our Lebanon office can be reached at 765-482-6672.