In recent years, fluoride has become a source of worry for many people, as a push for more “natural” products when it comes to health and hygiene is being made. While these endeavors are not all malicious, fluoride has gotten a bad name for itself that it doesn’t actually deserve. In today’s blog, your Lake Orion, MI, dentist will share some facts about fluoride, and why you and your family should continue to use it for the benefit of your dental health.
Fluoride Is Completely Natural
One of the biggest myths propagated about fluoride is that it is an unnatural chemical. The truth is, fluoride is a chemical compound (like just about everything else in the world) that occurs in nature in water sources such as oceans, lakes, and rivers, as well as rocks, plants, and soil. It is even called “nature’s cavity fighter” because of its totally natural cavity fighting properties!
It Is Added to Water Supplies, But That Isn’t Cause for Alarm
Yes, fluoride has been added to many municipal water systems since the mid twentieth century as part of an effort to combat cavities and reduce the need for restorative care like dental fillings. However, the amount of fluoride present in water, in the food we eat, and in toothpaste, mouthwash, and other dental hygiene products is not enough to cause you harm. While too much of anything can end up being a bad idea, you shouldn’t have any problems with getting sick from fluoride unless you are regularly swallowing your toothpaste or drinking bottles of mouthwash, neither of which we recommend.
Fluoride Strengthens Your Teeth
Nature’s cavity fighter is so called because, when you use a fluoridated toothpaste or mouthwash, the fluoride bonds with the other fluoride that was already present in your mouth from food and water to strengthen the hard outer layer of your teeth (your enamel), creating a stronger barrier against tooth decay and cavities. If your teeth are beginning to decay, fluoride can, amazingly, reverse the decay by rebuilding your enamel through a process called remineralization. What’s more, since fluoride began to be added to community water systems over 70 years ago, instances of cavities in children and adults have dropped by at least 25%, proving its efficacy.
We Want You to Be Protected
At Lake Orion Family Dentistry, our priority is keeping your family’s smiles healthy. While we know that fluoride is a safe and effective way to fight against cavities, and we offer professional fluoride treatments for children in our office, we respect each family’s decisions and are always willing to discuss all available options to protect your teeth from decay and other issues. If you have any questions about fluoride, don’t hesitate to ask!
Our Doors Are Open
If you ever have questions about dental healthcare, including the oft-misunderstood fluoride, we want to help you find the answers! To schedule an appointment, call Lake Orion Family Dentistry in Lake Orion, MI, today at 248-693-6213.