Fluoride: Myths and Facts

While almost everyone has likely heard of fluoride or had a fluoride treatment at one point in their lives, most people don’t completely know what it is. Fluoride is a mineral that is naturally found in water and

When it comes to your dental health, fluoride is used to protect teeth from tooth decay. It is added to a wide variety of dental products, such as toothpaste or mouthwash; it is given in drop or tablet form to children, and it is often added to public water supplies. The use of fluoride, including fluoridated water, helps strengthen and protect one’s teeth by hardening the enamel.

Fluoride is known to strengthen bone density and protect teeth from cavities and decay. However, there are a lot of myths regarding the use of fluoride, especially in water and dental products. This article will help you to separate myths from facts.

Top 4 Myths about Fluoride:

#1: Fluoride is unsafe for children

As long as your kids consume the appropriate amounts of fluoride, it is beneficial, not harmful. This is part of the reason so many places have fluoridated water. Fluoride helps strengthen your child’s enamel, making their teeth less susceptible to decay.

#2: Fluoride is unnatural

Fluoride is naturally found in all water supplies at some concentration. It also occurs naturally in rocks, minerals, and certain foods.

#3: Fluoridated water does not work

Fluoride not only helps to strengthen your teeth, but it can also help prevent future tooth decay and loss.

#4: Water fluoridation causes excessive dental fluorosis

Ingestion of excess fluoride can lead to scattered white flecks across the teeth. Nevertheless, the risk of dental fluorosis is very low and the risk of tooth decay is very high. To reduce your risk of dental fluorosis, use the proper amount of fluoride toothpaste or fluoride mouthwash as recommended by your dentist.

Top Facts about Fluoride:

#1: Fluoride strengthens your enamel

Fluoride locks calcium into your teeth, reducing the rate at which your teeth decay. It is often referred to as “nature’s cavity fighter” because it can also restore weakened enamel.

#2: Fluoride prevents tooth decay

Certain types of bacteria can destroy tooth enamel and dentin by leaching minerals from your teeth. Fluoride helps prevent this process by making your enamel resistant to demineralization.

#3: Fluoridated water is safe and effective

For over 70 years, people in the United States have been drinking water with added fluoride and experiencing better oral health. According to the American Dental Association, fluoride prevents tooth decay by at least 25% in both children and adults.

If you have any questions about fluoride or concerns about tooth decay, please contact us here and we will be happy to help!