When it comes to maintaining a healthy smile, fluoride plays a crucial role. This naturally occurring mineral has been proven to strengthen tooth enamel, making it more resistant to decay. In this blog post, we'll delve into the numerous benefits of fluoride and why it's considered an essential component of dental care. We'll also hear insights from leading experts in the field, Dr. Marc Lazare and Dr. Terese Fay, who have dedicated their careers to promoting optimal oral health.
With fluoride, a little goes a long way. When used in appropriate concentrations, fluoride is safe, effective and recommended to help promote healthy strong teeth. Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that can be found in water, soil, and certain foods. It has gained significant attention in the field of dentistry for its remarkable ability to protect teeth against cavities. When applied to teeth, fluoride strengthens enamel – the protective outer layer of the tooth – by remineralizing it, making it more resistant to the acids that lead to tooth decay.
Dr. Marc Lazare, a prominent dentist and advocate for comprehensive dental care, emphasizes the significance of fluoride in maintaining dental health. He asserts, "Fluoride is like a shield for your teeth. It provides an extra layer of protection against the acids produced by bacteria in your mouth, ultimately reducing the risk of cavities." With the use of fluoride rinses, gels and toothpastes, along with the use of dental sealants, digital x-rays, and electric brushes, we have the ability to detect, prevent and arrest the onset of these cavities.
Dr. Terese Fay, another respected expert in the field of dentistry, echoes this sentiment, stating, "Fluoride is a cornerstone of preventive dentistry. It's a cost-effective and straightforward way to fortify teeth and prevent common dental issues."
The Benefits of Fluoride
Strengthening Tooth Enamel: As mentioned earlier, fluoride works by remineralizing tooth enamel, making it more resilient to the harmful effects of acids produced by plaque bacteria. Dr. Lazare and Dr. Fay create custom fluoride trays that can be used to help protect teeth when someone has acid reflux, compromised salivary flow that causes a dry mouth (xerostomia), and during cancer therapies, such as chemo and radiation therapy that can affect the salivary glands. Custom trays allow for longer contact time between the fluoride gel and the teeth, which can enhance the effectiveness of fluoride in strengthening tooth enamel and preventing cavities.
Preventing Tooth Decay: Fluoride helps to inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria in the mouth and reduces the production of acids that can erode tooth enamel. Regular exposure to fluoride helps reduce the risk of cavities, especially in areas where the water supply may not naturally contain sufficient levels of fluoride. During the development of teeth fluoride supplements may be indicated if the water in your area does not contain the necessary trace amounts required to form adequate protection of the enamel.
Reversing Early Signs of Decay: In some cases, fluoride treatments can actually reverse the early stages of tooth decay by helping the enamel to remineralize before it progresses to an irreversible and more serious issue requiring a filling or larger restoration. When the tooth’s enamel is exposed to acids produced by bacteria in the mouth or from consuming sugary foods and beverages, it can begin to lose minerals like calcium and phosphate. This process weakens the enamel and creates white spot lesions, which are the initial signs of tooth decay.
Protecting Sensitive Teeth: Fluoride treatments and prescription strength fluoride toothpastes can alleviate tooth sensitivity by strengthening the enamel and reducing exposure to temperature-related discomfort, especially when the roots of your teeth are exposed due to gum recession and teeth grinding.
Safeguarding Oral Health Across Ages: From children with developing teeth to adults concerned about maintaining their oral health, in small amounts fluoride benefits individuals of all ages.
Cost-Effective Preventive Care: Compared to the cost of treating cavities, fluoride treatments are an economical way to proactively protect your teeth.
Incorporating fluoride into your dental care regimen is a simple yet powerful step towards maintaining strong, healthy teeth. With its ability to strengthen enamel and combat tooth decay, fluoride is a cornerstone of preventive dentistry. At Lazare Biomimetic Dentistry and Smile Design Studio, Custom fitted fluoride trays are made and the treatments are tailored to meet your specific needs, whether it is for cavity protection, tooth sensitivity or remineralization of enamel. Call our office to seek guidance from our trusted experts, Dr. Marc Lazare and Dr. Terese Fay, to ensure you're making the most of this essential mineral. Don't wait – schedule a consultation today to discuss the best fluoride treatment options for your unique dental needs. Your smile will thank you for it!