Most people have heard the word fluoride throughout their entire lives. We know that it is in our drinking water and that it is healthy for our teeth. And that’s pretty much all we know. Well for starters, fluoride is a mineral derived from an element called fluorine. It is added to our water and toothpaste for very specific reasons.

  • The addition of fluoride strengthens the teeth, making them more resistant to cavities. It also helps against the loss of minerals which protects tooth enamel. Not everyone has the need to use the same amount of fluoride in their toothpaste. If a persons teeth have a high content of fluoride already and are naturally resistant, then they may not need to use fluoride as apposed to someone with recurrent tooth decay. Fluoride also can be applied as a varnish, gel, or foam by your dentist. This contains a higher amount of fluoride than toothpaste.
  • Exposure to fluoride is most critical between ages 6 months to 16 years. This is when the primary and permanent teeth come in.

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