Fluoride Treatments for Kids and Adults: Just Say Yes
Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that can be found in food and water. The enamel on your teeth receives and loses minerals on a daily basis. Your tooth enamel loses minerals when acids form from plaque bacteria and sugars in your mouth. These acids attack your enamel, resulting in the loss of minerals such as fluoride. You can regain some of the lost fluoride on your enamel from certain foods and treated tap water, but if you don’t receive enough fluoride to replace the amount lost, tooth decay can occur.
How Fluoride Treatments Help Your Teeth
Fluoride treatments aid in preventing tooth decay by making your enamel resistant to the acids that form plaque bacteria and sugars in your mouth. When given to children younger than six years old, this mineral helps in the development of stronger permanent teeth, aiding in the prevention of acid demineralization. Fluoride treatments can also help adults and older children, as it speeds up the addition of minerals to your enamel to disrupt acid production in permanent teeth. This results in a lessened incidence of tooth decay and cavities.
Children and Fluoride Treatments
The professionals at Alabama Family Dentistry understand that children generally do not have stellar dental habits at home. They often forget to brush after meals or before going to bed at night. When children do brush their teeth, they don’t always manage to reach all of their tooth surfaces to clear away the plaque that causes cavities. This is why fluoride treatments are important for children. This mineral provides the added extra protection children need to stave off tooth decay and unwanted cavity fillings. Fluoride treatments are safe for children and are highly effective in reducing dental cavities.
Adults and Fluoride Treatments
Adults can also benefit from fluoride treatments. As you get older, you may start taking medications or have a disease that can cause dry mouth, which makes you more susceptible to tooth decay. With less saliva in your mouth, those acids from plaque and sugars cannot be easily neutralized and washed away. Adding fluoride can help prevent decay. Gum disease or if your gums have begun to recede gives bacteria room to grow, hastening tooth decay that fluoride can resist. If you don’t use a toothpaste with fluoride, or if you only drink bottled water that contains no fluoride, you should also consider getting fluoride treatments from your Birmingham area dentist.
A fluoride varnish treatment is a concentrated form of fluoride that is applied directly onto the teeth. This fluoride treatment is also FDA-approved for treating dental sensitivity, which is often an issue for adults. The varnish, which is appropriate for children or adults, penetrates the tooth enamel and gives you protection against tooth decay for up to three months.
Fluoride Treatments in Birmingham
The dentists affiliated with Alabama Family Dentistry can provide you with fluoride treatments so you can better prevent tooth decay for yourself or your children. Alabama Family Dentistry has four locations in the Birmingham area. These include Warrior Family Dentistry, Acton Road Family Dentistry, Gardendale Family Dentistry, and Sumitron Family Dentistry.
This article does not take the place of professional dental advice. Please make an appointment at Alabama Family Dentistry or with a dentist in your area for more information.
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