Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that works to build strong teeth and prevent cavities. It’s been an important ingredient in oral health remedies for decades because it actively fights harmful bacteria, restores gums, and supports healthy tooth enamel.
Many dentists recommend fluoride treatment if you are susceptible to developing dental cavities. Cavities occur due to poor oral hygiene when bacteria is left to build upon the gums and teeth. This then develops into plaque, a sticky layer that produces acid that erodes teeth and irritates gum tissue. If this layer of plaque breaks down into the enamel layer, the bacteria can travel into the tooth’s core, causing nerve and blood vessel damage.
Fluoride remineralizes your teeth, providing an extra layer of protection against acid erosion and cavities. Learn more about its benefits, effects, and how it works.
What is Fluoride Treatment?
When undergoing this treatment, your dentist applies a high concentration of fluoride to your teeth, either as a varnish, mouth rinse, gel, or foam. The treatment only takes a few minutes, and you should avoid eating or drinking for at least 30 minutes after the procedure to allow the fluoride to completely absorb through the enamel.
The fluoride used in dental treatments is similar to the mineral found in toothpaste. However, these professional treatments contain much higher levels than toothpaste and typically offer quicker and more effective benefits.
How Often Should I Get a Fluoride Treatment?
The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends twice yearly fluoride treatments, depending on the condition of your oral health. If you are at a high risk of cavities, you may need to visit your dentist every three months for a fluoride treatment. High-risk individuals include people who:
- Have a poor oral hygiene routine
- Grind their teeth
- Suffer from an eating disorder
- Abuse alcohol or narcotics
- Have weak enamel
- Experience dry mouth
Benefits of Fluoride Treatment
The mineral itself has many benefits for the teeth, including:
- It helps the body use and incorporate other minerals better, such as phosphate and calcium. When fluoride comes into contact with the teeth, it helps reabsorb the other minerals and repair weak tooth enamel.
- It slows and, in some cases, reverses the development of tooth cavities by repairing the weak tooth enamel.
- Fluoride integrates into the structure of the teeth when they are developing and strengthens the enamel. This makes teeth less vulnerable to bacteria and cavities for life, which is why fluoride treatment is especially beneficial for children.
Regular professional fluoride treatment not only improves oral health but also enhances your overall physical health too. Having poor oral health doesn’t just affect your teeth, gums, and mouth; it can also play a role in the development of other serious health conditions, such as cardiovascular disease.
Why Should You Have Regular Fluoride Treatments?
As adults, it’s especially important to maintain oral health and hygiene by regularly attending dental appointments and cleaning teeth often and effectively. Over time, the constant consumption of different sugary and carbohydrate-rich foods and drinks can build up acid on the teeth, which is one of the main causes for them breaking down.
The first part of the tooth to break down is the enamel, which is why having regular fluoride treatments is so important. Not only does it ensure the sustained strength of your teeth and provide them with the minerals they need to stay healthy, but it also quickly regenerates and rebuilds the enamel and minerals that may have been lost over time.
Maintain Strong and Healthy Teeth
Exposure to fluoride, especially from a young age, is one of the main preventers of cavities and other oral health problems. Having regular fluoride treatment can help you to maintain a bright, healthy smile. To find out more about the treatment, contact Valley Dental Plainfield to speak to one of our dentists.