Fluoride is an important element that plays a major role in the strengthening of the teeth. Fluoride is generally present in water, soil, air, and foods. Fluoride can be used in countering early problems of tooth decay. It is also used to make the teeth more resistant to plaque and acids that may weaken and cause damage to our teeth. It is easily absorbed by our teeth particularly the growing teeth of children.
Some fluoride containing compounds are added to drinking water, soft drinks, teas and other hygienic products such as toothpaste and mouthwash. The blood supply is responsible in taking the element to the whole body. However, our teeth and bones are the ones that restore the released fluoride.
Products like toothpaste and mouth rinse contains a strong concentration of fluoride. It can be used by applying directly to our teeth and mouth. Brushing twice a day using fluoride toothpaste will help us to avoid different dental problems. However, for some people prone to dental caries, dentists suggest them to use topical fluorides such as gel and varnishes. These gel and varnishes are applied directly to the mouth for a period of six weeks.
Fluoride is proven to be safe and effective if used properly. Always remember, that the overuse or improper use of fluoride can cause harm to our self, especially to our children, because there is more possibility of them swallowing toothpaste and other fluoride supplements, or drinking too much water containing excessive fluoride levels. Taking too much fluoride and or fluoridated water (a water that consists of fluoride compounds; it is made for the purpose of reducing tooth decay in the general population; more than 144 million residents in the United States drink fluoridated water) may lead to dental fluorosis (a harmless cosmetic discoloring or mottling of the enamel, visible by chalky white specks and lines or pitted and brown stained enamel on developing teeth). To avoid these kinds of problems, ask your dentist on the proper dosage of fluoride that you need and avoid swallowing toothpaste and other products that contain fluoride.