Many of the oral health products available in stores contain fluoride as an ingredient. It’s also commonly added to public water supplies due to its’ remarkable ability to combat tooth decay. You might be surprised to know that fluoride has several key benefits to promote your oral health!
Dr. Mark S. Jefferies of Herndon, VA is a dentist who understands that the regular maintenance and care of your smile is an important part of your overall healthcare and well-being. Learn more about how fluoride strengthens your teeth and how you can benefit from its effects.
What Does Fluoride Do?
Fluoride strengthens tooth enamel due to its chemical properties. The hard outer layer of our teeth is known as the enamel, and it protects the sensitive tissues and nerves inside our teeth. Cavities develop when the enamel is weakened by bacteria eating away at plaque buildup, and fluoride can help reverse this by attracting calcium to your teeth to rebuild damage. Fluoride is considered “nature’s cavity fighter” because of its ability to reverse early signs of tooth decay and strengthening teeth.
How Does Fluoride Work?
Fluoride is a mineral found naturally in all water sources. Our bodies cannot make fluoride on their own. We can only get it from outside sources such as in drinking water or topical fluoride sources like toothpaste or mouthwash.
When the body absorbs fluoride, it reverses early stages of tooth decay by helping the teeth replace calcium and phosphorus that make the enamel hard. Minerals present during this process, called remineralization, need fluoride present to allow the enamel to absorb them to keep it strong.
Why Kids May Need Fluoride Treatments
In children, fluoride works beneath the gum line before teeth have erupted to ensure they grow and develop properly. As children are still learning good oral hygiene, their dentist may recommend a topical treatment such as an at-home gel or an in-office fluoride varnish to ensure they are maximizing fluoride’s tooth-strengthening benefits.
Keep Enamel Strong At All Ages
Adults need fluoride, too. Many public water supplies have fluoride added to them, and most toothpaste and mouthwash has added fluoride. Combining topical treatments with consuming fluoride keeps teeth strong and can save families from needing expensive dental treatments.
Don’t forget to schedule your regular dental exams and maintain good oral hygiene. Fluoride treatments are just one of the many ways you can keep your teeth healthy for the rest of your life.
Dental Care in Herndon, VA
If you live or work in the Herndon, VA area and are looking for a skilled and compassionate dentist, schedule with Dr. Jefferies. Contact us online or call (703) 570-1152 to schedule a consultation today.