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Fluoride Treatment: Facts You Need to Know

The Fluoride and dental health are closely related as fluoride is a natural mineral which helps in building strong teeth and prevents cavities. It supports healthy tooth enamel as well as protects the gums and teeth from bacteria. The outer layer of our teeth is the enamel. When there is a buildup of bacteria and plaque on the teeth, it erodes the teeth and gum tissues entering the enamel layer and infecting the nerves.

What happens during a professional fluoride treatment?

The dentists offer fluoride treatment in the form of concentrated rinse, varnish, gel or foam. These treatments have more fluoride than water or toothpaste. It will only take a few minutes for application and you will be asked not to drink or eat for 30 minutes so that the fluoride can get fully absorbed in your teeth.

How much does a fluoride treatment cost?

The insurance mostly covers the fluoride treatments for children but adults may have to pay 10 to 30 dollars from their pocket. You can ask the dentist about the cost before beginning the treatment.

How much fluoride do you need?

It has been suggested to get the fluoride treatment done at every 3, 6, 12 months. If you have high risk of cavities, the dentist may prescribe a special fluoride rinse or gel which should be used at home regularly.

What are the benefits of fluoride?

Fluoride restores the minerals in the tooth surface where the enamel has been eroded by the bacteria. It can also control the growth of bacteria and protect teeth from cavities.

Are there side effects to fluoride?

Too much fluoride can lead to:

  • staining and pitting on teeth
  • Issues with bone homeostasis
  • White specks on mature teeth
  • Dense bones which are not very strong

Do you need to use toothpaste?

Using fluoride toothpaste can be beneficial along with maintaining proper oral care routine by brushing teeth twice daily. One should also floss the teeth to get rid of the plaque that is stuck between the teeth.

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