Why do Dentists Treat your Teeth with Fluoride?
Tooth enamel is hard yet porous. Exposure to certain acids, like plaque forming on the surface of your teeth, can permeate into openings (rods) of the enamel and corrupt its internal structure. This process, called demineralization, may create a vulnerability in the tooth that can become a cavity if left untreated and is the first sign of tooth decay. Fluoride works to prevent tooth decay by slowing down the erosion of enamel . Fluoride increases the rate of the remineralization, a process where new enamel crystals form harder, larger and more resistant to acid. Learning what fluoride does for the health of your teeth will help you become more aware of how to identify plaque and prevent it from becoming a cavity.
Topical Fluoride strengthens the teeth once they have erupted by seeping into the outer surface of the tooth enamel, making the teeth more resistant to decay. We gain topical fluoride by using fluoride containing dental products such as toothpaste, mouth rinses, and gels. We recommend that children and adults have a professional application of fluoride twice a year during dental check-ups.
Make sure to speak with your dentist about fluoride in your daily oral care regimen if any of these are part of recent your dental history:
- Deep pits and fissures on the chewing surfaces of teeth.
- Exposed and sensitive root surfaces.
- Fair to poor oral hygiene habits.
- Frequent sugar and carbohydrate intake.
- Inadequate exposure to fluorides.
- Inadequate saliva flow due to medical conditions, medical treatments or medications.
- Recent history of dental decay.
Fluoride plays a key role in the health of your teeth, and now that you know of its importance, Dr. Finlay and Associates can help you include it in your routine and during office visits.