PEARLS OF WISDOM: TOPICAL FLUORIDE
Topical fluoride gel is available over-the-counter without a prescription at your pharmacy. We often use it with kids that are in orthodontic care to try to give some extra strengthening to the tooth structure and to rebuild tooth structure that might be adversely affected by debris on the teeth.
How Teeth Benefit From Fluoride
Fluoride is an essential nutrient for healthy teeth. It becomes incorporated in the apatite crystal of tooth structure to give it a stronger form. This increases the density and strength of tooth structure and therefore the resistance to decalcification and decay. It helps in shrinking the pore size on root surfaces and also tends to deaden the surface nerve endings on the tooth roots and therefore decreases root sensitivity on teeth.
How Fluoride in Water Fights Decay
In our area, there are many people on well water and I see a definite increase in decay under restorations on these individuals who do not have administered fluoride in their water. We also see this on individuals who do not use city water. We also tend to see an increased incidence in decay underneath restorations such as the edges of crowns or the edges of fillings in older patients, whose immune systems may be diminishing. We certainly see this in patients with immune illnesses, such as patients who are undergoing chemotherapy.
The pearl is that topical fluoride can be used as a home application. Again, it is available over-the-counter at your pharmacy. I would typically recommend brushing it on after nighttime tooth brushing. Put a small amount on your tooth brush and just brush it on you teeth and leave it set. This gives it a chance to affect the teeth topically. This will help to reduce sensitivity on the teeth and can reduce the tendency toward getting decay under the teeth. If you are having an active problem with sensitivity or decay, I would recommend doing this for about one week and then after that, do it a few days a month.
Results-Driven Oral Surgery in Racine
Fluoride is an important part of your oral health routine, but care from an experienced oral surgery team. For a consultation, call Wagner Oral Surgery and Dental Implant Specialists at (262) 634-4646 today! Our professional, positive oral surgery experts will take excellent care of you.
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