Have you ever wondered why tap water is fluoridated? For over 70 years, Americans have been drinking fluoridated water to reduce tooth decay. Even though this was a brilliant way of reducing tooth decay, many Americans still battle with tooth decay.
Through this initiative, there has been a 25% reduction in tooth decay in the American population. Still, this is not enough.
For this reason, you need regular dental exams and cleanings. A noteworthy part of these examinations is the fluoride treatment in Pearland. Typically, you will receive a fluoride treatment at the end of your dental examination.
Understanding Fluoride Treatment
When you eat food, at times, food debris gets stuck in deep pits, fissures, and hard to reach places in your mouth.
Then bacteria start collecting around your teeth and gums, forming a clear coating known as plaque.
The bacteria produce acid, which starts corroding your enamel. This is how you get tooth decay.
Fluoride is the most effective agent known to man that can help prevent tooth caries (decay). Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that aids in building strong teeth and preventing tooth decay. It is also capable of reversing early signs of tooth decay in children.
Fluoride is particularly more helpful if you are at a higher risk of developing tooth decay. This is where fluoride treatment near Pearland comes in handy. Professional treatments done by our dentist will contain high fluoride concentration as compared to the fluoride in food or tap water.
How Does Fluoride Work
Each day your tooth’s enamel might lose some minerals through a process known as demineralization. What typically happens is the acid produced by bacteria, and sugar destroys your enamel.
Fluoride’s main job is to remineralize (redepositing lost minerals) to your tooth’s enamel. Fluoride attains this goal in two ways:
- Topical Fluoride
Your teeth get strengthened after they have erupted by seeping into the enamel (the outer surface of the tooth), thus making your teeth resistant to decay. It achieves this by enhancing the uptake of minerals such as phosphate and calcium.
During the remineralization process, fluoride will be incorporated into the enamel, increasing its resistance to acid. You will get topical fluoride from dental products like toothpaste, gels, and mouthwashes.
- Systemic Fluoride
Erupted teeth plus those which are developing under the gums get nourished and strengthened through systemic fluoride treatment. You get this type of fluoride in low concentration forms such as tap water or a supplement in gel or drop form.
When it is introduced in the mouth, it exists in oral reservoirs like saliva as opposed to topical fluoride. This will disrupt bacterial activity.
How Much Fluoride Is Appropriate for You?
For best results, you need to visit our dentist for fluoride treatment after every three, six, or twelve months, depending on your situation. Our dentist will prescribe certain gels that you can regularly use if you are at a higher risk of getting caries.
Who Needs Fluoride Treatment?
Infants and children from the age of six months to 16 years must use fluoride regularly. During this period, the permanent teeth are being formed, and they must have the proper foundation.
Other than that, some conditions will increase the risk of you getting tooth decay, and fluoride treatment will be beneficial to you.
You could be at risk of getting caries if:
- You have an eating disorder.
- You have a poor diet.
- You have poor oral hygiene.
- Your enamel is weak
- You are suffering from dry mouth conditions.
- You consume excess alcohol.
- You have existing restorations like fillings and bridges.
- You have gum disease.
Benefits of Fluoride Treatment
Fluoride treatment has the following benefits:
- When incorporated in the tooth structure during the developing stages, it strengthens the enamel aiding the teeth to be less vulnerable to cavities for life.
- It helps your body properly utilize phosphate and calcium since it aids in their uptake, thus repairing the weak enamel.
- It can reverse the effects of cavities when detected early.
Any Side Effects?
Like most things in life, you cannot take too much fluoride without getting undesired results. Too much fluoride may harm your child’s developing teeth and bones. Too much fluoride can cause:
- Pitting and staining on teeth
- Mature teeth to have specks
- Dense bones that are weak
- Complications with bone homeostasis
Remember that getting fluoride treatment near you alone will not prevent tooth decay. You have to eat the right foods and maintain proper oral hygiene. For examinations, fluoride treatment in Pearland, or any other treatment, contact us at Harmony Dental to book an appointment.