What is Fluoride?
Fluoride is a compound of the element fluorine, which is found universally throughout nature in water, soil, air, and in most foods. Fluoride is absorbed easily into tooth enamel, especially in children's growing teeth. Before the use of fluoride, cavities in children were rampant. Now it is not unusual to get through childhood without ever getting a cavity
As we get older and our teeth are developed, fluoride can help make your teeth more resistant to decay and promote remineralization, By re-mineralizing a tooth, we can prevent cavities from forming in areas where the enamel is thin and keep cavities from getting bigger.
There are two ways of delivering fluoride to the teeth - Topical (in the mouth) and Systemic (ingested through water and supplements.)
At Start Smiling Dental, we typically use a topical fluoride varnish. Fluoride varnish is most beneficial for children whose teeth are still developing, adults who are prone to cavities, and anyone who suffers from acid reflux. The clear varnish is usually applied after your dental cleaning and absorbs into your teeth over an hour or so.
We recommend all patients brush their teeth with a fluoride toothpaste at least twice a day for continued prevention.
"Love Dr. Sayeg and the whole team at Start Smiling. Every time I visit, everyone in the office is friendly and accommodating. They are incredibly knowledgeable and consultative, and do consistently wonderful work."- A.R. / Google / Mar 05, 2017
"I've been a patient of Dr Sayeg since early 2000 and I have no intention of leaving! Even after moving out of the Sandy Springs area, I still make the commute to my twice yearly appointments with Tanya, my hygienist! I absolutely love her! She's always in a contagiously happy mood and her professionalism is unmatched. From the front office staff all the way up to Dr Sayeg, this is a great practice!"- A.P. / Google / Mar 05, 2017
"My dental care has been in the hands of the folks at Start Smiling for many years. I have always found them to be capable, reliable, and eager to help. I could not recommend them highly enough to express my appreciation for their excellent service over the years."- A. / Google / Mar 05, 2017
"Thanks to Dr. Cherof, Shinny and the whole staff at start smiling dentistry!!! Thanks for finding an issue that was missed at a previous dentist office and being able to get my problem fixed in a timely manner!!!! Beautiful office with family friendly staff!!!"- M.L. / Google / Mar 05, 2017
"Another fantastic dental experience with Dr. Cherof. I always have complete confidence in all of my treatments and procedures. I can sit back, relax, and know I'm in good hands. Wonderful staff too!!"- A.M. / Google / Mar 05, 2017
is it safe?
The topical fluoride varnish we use at Start Smiling Dental is the safest delivery method, due to the gel that holds the fluoride stays in place until the fluoride is absorbed. Once absorbed, the gel naturally sloughs off. This way, you do not ingest any of the mineral and it goes straight into your tooth structure.
Systemic fluoride is added to public and private water supplies in low doses. Fluorinated water is incorporated into children's tooth structure as they are forming. Therefore the teeth are formed stronger than they would have been naturally. It also helps all of us when it comes into contact with our teeth when drinking it. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has determined that the accepted optimal range of fluoride in water lies between 0.7 and 1.2 parts per million (ppm) or mg per liter. The limit allowed by the EPA in water is 4 ppm.
Backed by the results from more than 20 different countries over the past several decades, fluorinated water adhering to these standards has been scientifically established as safe for drinking. Water fluoridation is endorsed by nearly every major health and safety-related organization due to tooth decay being the most common chronic disease in the world.
Can I get too much fluoride?
In general, the use of fluoride is considered safe unless it's misused or over-concentrated. Drinking excessively fluorinated water can cause dental fluorosis. Dental fluorosis is a harmless cosmetic discoloring of the enamel, visible by chalky white specks and lines or pitted and brown stained enamel.
To avoid dental fluorosis, avoid swallowing toothpaste, rinses or other topical fluorides. Use a low dose fluoride toothpaste for children who might not understand want to eat their toothpaste as they brush. Always swish water in your mouth after brushing and then expectorate completely.
If you are concerned about the fluoride levels in your drinking water, call your local public water department for more information. If your source is a private well, request a fluoride content analysis taken via a water sample through your local or county health department.
Topical fluoride is the least expensive way to prevent cavities from forming or getting larger. Treatments costing under $50 can save thousands of dollars in more costly procedures and keep your teeth healthy for a lifetime.
If you think fluoride can help you, give our office a call for more information at 404-255-6782.
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Prevent and Protect
Fluoride, a naturally occurring element can protect and strengthen teeth. As one of the least costly dental procedures the benefits can be huge. Start Smiling Dental wants to help you keep your teeth for a lifetime. Give us a call at 404-255-6782 to find out more of how fluoride can help you.