One of the best ways to strengthen your child’s teeth and prevent tooth decay is to provide them with supplemental fluoride applications. Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that is found in many water sources and certain foods. Children can receive significant benefits from topical fluoride applications since their still-developing teeth are often prone to deterioration or damage.
Fluoride provides teeth with two major benefits:
- It attaches to tooth enamel to enhance the strength and resistance of teeth.
- It remineralizes tooth enamel, reversing the tooth decay process.
Fluoride applications are a very easy process that can be completed in just one visit to our office. The treatment involves applying fluoride directly to your child’s teeth in the form of a gel, foam or varnish. Once the procedure is completed, your child should not eat or drink anything for at least one hour so that their teeth can properly absorb all of the fluoride.
Children receive supplemental fluoride applications for many reasons, including:
- Sensitive or exposed root surfaces
- Deep grooves or fissures commonly found on baby teeth
- Poor oral hygiene practices
- Limited exposure to fluoride
- Excessive sugar intake
- Prior experiences of tooth decay
- Inadequate saliva flow
Although supplemental fluoride applications can be very helpful in preventing your child from developing cavities or tooth decay, the treatment is not designed to serve as a replacement for regular brushing and flossing. Your child should continue to brush at least twice per day, floss daily, and visit our practice at least twice a year for a complete dental checkup in order to maintain strong oral health.