Fluoride is a mineral that naturally occurs in water, soil, plants, and animals. It’s also present in many foods, such as fish, eggs, and rice. While small amounts of fluoride occur naturally in everyone’s water supply, tons of it are used to prevent tooth decay on our teeth by strengthening them — making them more resistant to decay. Fluoride treatments are a common preventive measure in pediatric dentistry to promote optimal oral health in children. At Dental Care for Kids, the primary purpose of fluoride treatments is to strengthen the tooth enamel and make it more resistant to tooth decay. Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that helps prevent cavities by remineralizing the weakened areas of the enamel and inhibiting the growth of bacteria that cause decay.
The Procedure for Fluoride Treatments
Before applying the fluoride, the dental professional will clean the child's teeth using a toothbrush and toothpaste with a gritty fluoride-free paste. This step removes any plaque or debris from the tooth surfaces to ensure better fluoride absorption.
The dental professional will paint a thin layer of fluoride varnish onto the surfaces of the teeth using a brush or applicator. The varnish adheres to the teeth and slowly releases fluoride over time. It is safe to swallow, and the child can eat and drink immediately after the application.
The Benefits of Fluoride Treatments for Children
Prevention of Tooth Decay
Fluoride is highly effective in preventing tooth decay, which is a common dental problem in children. It strengthens the tooth enamel and makes it more resistant to acid attacks from bacteria and sugary foods. Regular fluoride treatments can significantly reduce the risk of cavities and the need for extensive dental treatments in the future.
Remineralization of Enamel
Fluoride has the ability to remineralize the weakened areas of the tooth enamel. When the enamel is demineralized by acids produced by bacteria, fluoride helps to repair and strengthen the enamel, making it more resistant to decay. This helps to prevent the progression of early cavities and can reverse early stages of tooth decay.
Protection for Developing Teeth
Children's teeth, especially permanent teeth, are still developing and are more vulnerable to decay. Fluoride treatments provide an added layer of protection during this critical period of tooth development. They help ensure that the permanent teeth erupt into a healthy oral environment, reducing the risk of cavities and other dental issues.
Fluoride treatments can significantly reduce the risk of cavities in children and promote the development of strong, healthy teeth. For more information visit Dental Care for Kids at 3235 N Towerbridge Way Suite #200, Meridian, ID 83646 or call (208) 888-7711.