Fluoride is a mineral, which is naturally incorporated into water and many foods. Fluoride strengthens the enamel of the tooth significantly and protects it against the harsh acid produced by the bacteria that cause cavities. Topical fluoride varnish can be applied to the tooth enamel quickly and painlessly during a regular office visit. However, too little or too much fluoride can be detrimental to the teeth. We are here for your Preventative Pediatric Dental Care in Phoenix Arizona.
Sources of Fluoride that can increase risk of damage to adult teeth:
Fluoridated toothpaste at an early age
Young children may not be able to expectorate (spit out) fluoride-containing toothpaste when brushing. As a result, these children may ingest an excessive amount of fluoride during tooth brushing. Toothpaste ingestion during this critical period of permanent tooth development is the greatest risk factor in the development of fluorosis.
High level of fluoride in Foods.
Certain foods contain high levels of fluoride, especially powdered concentrate infant formula, soy-based infant formula, infant dry cereals, creamed spinach, and infant chicken products. Please read the label or contact the manufacturer. Some beverages also contain high levels of fluoride, especially decaffeinated teas, white grape juices, and juice drinks manufactured in fluoridated cities.
Parents can take the following steps to decrease the risk of fluorosis in their children’s teeth:
- Use training toothpaste on the toothbrush for children under the age of 2, unless directed by your pediatric dentist.
- Ages 2-5 should only use a smear (grain of rice-sized) of fluoride toothpaste.
- Ages 5+ place only a small pea sized drop of children’s toothpaste on the brush when brushing.
- Avoid giving any fluoride-containing supplements unless the need is determined by your pediatric dentist and pediatrician.
- Obtain fluoride level test results for your drinking water before giving fluoride supplements to your child (check with local water utilities).
Tooth Club for Kids is devoted to prevention and wants to help all patients grow up cavity-free.
We strongly recommend sealing your child’s teeth. The application of a sealant is one of the easiest and most effective methods available today to prevent tooth decay. A sealant is a clear of white plastic resin material that is applied to the pits and grooves of the back teeth where most childhood cavities are found. Dental sealants provide a barrier to protect against cavities and can be applied to baby molars, adult premolars and posterior molars. These sealants should be applied as early as possible to help prevent the formation of cavities. Chewing surfaces are the most likely places to develop cavities because toothbrush bristles are often unable to reach into the grooves of the teeth. Sealants help preserve these vulnerable areas by protecting them from food contact and the formation of plaque. Dental sealants cost less than traditional cavity fillings and usually last for several years before needing a re-application. If the sealant begins to lift off of the tooth, food particles may become trapped against the enamel and cause tooth decay. The health of the sealant must be monitored at each 6-month check up.
My Baby Lost a Tooth Prematurely
If a baby tooth is lost prematurely, Dr. Garrett may recommend an appliance called a space maintainer to preserve the gap for the adult tooth. Space maintainers help prevent shifting of the teeth and the crowding of adult teeth.