Learn More About Fluoride From Our Elmhurst Dentist

Written by Dr. Scharfenberg on Jul 21, 2015

Our Elmhurst dentists help families develop strong oral hygiene habits and routines, so that they can enjoy healthy smiles. One question that often comes up when parents are choosing oral hygiene products for their families is, “should we be using fluoride?”

In this short article we are going to be discussing how fluoride can be beneficial in certain patients’ dental routines.

Fluoride is used in dentistry because it is able to strengthen dental enamel. Fluoride, when applied topically, can actually help to prevent dental cavities. Consequently, fluoride is used in many different oral hygiene products, such as…

· Toothpaste

· Mouthwashes

· Dentist-administered topical fluoride gels

In the United States, our water is even infused into our public water supply.

Now, when you are picking oral hygiene products for your family, different members of your household may have different fluoride needs.

Young children, in general, should not use products with fluoride. This is because young children are still developing their adult teeth. Fluoride can harm developing teeth—causing them to form with discoloration and textural irregularities. This condition is called dental fluorosis. Because young children are prone to consuming oral hygiene products, they need to use toothpastes and mouth rinses without fluoride.

Adult patients, on the other hand, can use fluoride products safely. Fluoride toothpastes and mouthwashes help dental enamel to re-mineralize, so using these products on a regular basis can help to minimize your risk of developing cavities.

Your dentist will be able to advise you as to when your child can begin to use products that contain fluoride. Generally, this is appropriate once the child has learned not to swallow toothpastes and mouth rinses.

Schedule a consultation with our Elmhurst dentists in order to get customized recommendations for your dental hygiene routine. We have the information and the support that you need to enjoy a stellar smile.