Chances are you’ve had a fluoride treatment before, but what is it and what are the reasons why dentists use it? Here, we break down everything you need to know to answer those questions.
What is Fluoride?
Flouride is a mineral that can be found naturally in both fresh and salt water, along with in soil and certain foods. This mineral has long been known for its ability to protect our teeth.
Why Your Dentist Uses Fluoride:
Fluoride Keeps Our Teeth Strong
Fluoride has been used for many years as an essential oral health treatment. This natural mineral compound works to build up our enamel and shelter our teeth from acids and plaque.
Fluoride Fights Bacteria & Prevents Tooth Decay
Tightly packed mineral crystals are what make up your tooth enamel. As we eat, drink, and consume various substances each and every day, demineralization naturally occurs (which wears away at that outer shield). This happens when bacteria are left to fester and accumulate.
As they do, they leave behind acids and sticky plaque which builds and erodes along the teeth and gum tissues. Remineralization helps to balance out this process; however, when too much of the enamel has been worn away, tooth decay can occur.
Fluoride Speeds Up Remineralization
Another important reason why dentists use fluoride is that it speeds up the remineralization process. When small amounts of fluoride are held in our mouths, it helps to strengthen enamel by incorporating it into our saliva. When the dentist asks you to swish with fluoride or hold a placement amount of it between your teeth, it provides a healthy dose of the mineral which helps destroy both the bacteria and acids inside of your mouth.
Flouride Protects Against Gum Disease
Did you know that gum disease, including gingivitis and periodontal disease, are some of the leading causes of tooth loss? It’s true! However, the good news is that when they’re caught early enough, these conditions can be reversed. Good dental habits, proper oral hygiene, and fluoride all play an important preventative role in fighting these issues.
Now you know all about this vital mineral substance and why it’s such an essential part of maintaining healthy teeth and gums. At The Teal Umbrella, our dental team can answer any questions or concerns you have — call today to book your next appointment for you or a family member!