You may have heard that fluoride is beneficial for your teeth; you may even know that it’s added in to your water. But do you know why fluoride builds healthy teeth?
Fluoride is a mineral that’s found in water and in many foods. The mineral plays an important role in strengthening and protecting the tooth’s enamel from decay. Every day, minerals are added to and taken away from your teeth’s enamel layer through the processes of demineralization and remineralization. Demineralization occurs when acids from plaque and sugars attack a tooth’s enamel. Remineralization is the process of adding back lost minerals, such as fluoride, to strengthen and repair the enamel. If too much demineralization occurs without enough remineralization to counteract it, tooth decay will likely occur.
Here are three reasons why fluoride gives you a better smile:
1.) Fluoride helps prevent tooth decay by making teeth more resistant to acid attacks from plaque bacteria and sugars.
2.) Fluoride reverses early decay in patients of all ages. For children under six years old, fluoride becomes built in to the growth and development of permanent teeth; strengthening and protecting the teeth from acids demineralizing teeth. The most critical time for fluoride intake is between 6 months to 16-years-old however, fluoride is needed all lifelong to maintain healthy teeth.
3.) Fluoride speeds up the remineralization process and disrupts the production of acid.
For the past 70 years in the United States, community water systems have added fluoride to drinking water – making taking care of your teeth even easier. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, fluoridated water can reduce tooth decay by about 25%. You can also supplement additional fluoride by using over-the-counter mouth washes and fluoridated toothpastes.
Preventive dental care, such as drinking plenty of water, will help prevent cavities on your teeth. And of course, good oral health and regular checkups with the dentists at Dakota Dental can help make sure that you and your family are getting enough fluoride. Make an appointment with the family dentists at Dakota Dental today!