You’ve likely heard that fluoride is good for your teeth, but do you know why or how? Fluoride is actually a natural mineral and is found in drinking water and many foods. When it comes to teeth, fluoride strengthens enamel which makes it more resistant to tooth decay. Fluoride also helps to reduce the acid levels produced by bacteria on your teeth.
Children shouldn’t use products like toothpaste and mouthwash that contain fluoride until they are at least six years old. Over the years there has been quite a bit of debate and research regarding the subject of fluoride in drinking water. This has been researched for more than 60 years, and the studies have found that water fluoridation reduces tooth decay by 40 to 60%. There is also no scientific evidence supporting the claims that fluoride added to water is harmful.
You can check with your water supplier to find out if your drinking water has added fluoride and how much. The mineral can be found in some food including fish and tea. Because you likely don’t get enough fluoride from water and foods, it is also added to toothpaste in amounts high enough to reduce tooth decay.
Although most toothpaste contains fluoride, you should read the label to be sure the brand you choose has it added. You likely aren’t getting enough fluoride from other sources, and the benefits of preventing tooth decay far outweigh the disadvantages which are virtually none. When buying mouthwash, you should also look for products that feature fluoride.
If you aren’t sure whether or not you should use toothpaste that contains fluoride or a version that is fluoride-free, your best bet is to ask your dentist. Tribeca Dental Studio specializes in preventive, restorative, cosmetic, and children’s dentistry in New York City. Give us a call today at 347-508-6412 to schedule an appointment.