Fluoride is used to help prevent cavities because it makes the tooth more resistant to plaque bacteria and sugars.  It can also reverse early tooth decay.  Sometimes you will hear the words “enamel cavity”.  Essentially, what that means is if the cavity is only in the enamel, there’s a good chance, with the help of fluoride, that cavity can stay small, therefore, avoiding the need for filling.  If the cavity gets past the enamel layer of the tooth into the dentin, then a filling is necessary.

Fluoride is beneficial for both adults and children.  The biggest misconception is that only kids should get fluoride.  Most of us have fluoride in our drinking water but more and more people are using bottled water and that’s another reason why in-office fluoride is so important to help prevent cavities.  Fluoride treatment is a varnish/gel like solution that is applied to teeth in order to strengthen them. Fluoride treatments are professionally administered in our office. Sometimes, we also Rx fluoride toothpaste.  This toothpaste has higher percentage of fluoride than what you purchase over the counter.  We recommend that children and adult patients receive fluoride treatments twice per year.

If you experience dry mouth or have gone through chemo or radiation therapy, it is very important to have your regular check ups because you are at higher risk for cavities.  Fluoride can be a big benefit in these situations and help you keep you teeth for a lifetime.