There are plenty of ways to keep your mouth healthy and happy. When it comes to brushing and flossing, you’re removing stuff that’s in your mouth to ensure leftover material doesn’t start to produce bacteria that can turn into plaque and tartar. Fluoride, on the other hand, is something you add to your oral health regimen to help give your teeth the upper hand, so to speak.
What Exactly is Fluoride?
Let’s back up just a bit. First, you should understand a little bit about your teeth. Teeth are covered by a hard outer layer called enamel. Enamel’s job is to act as a shield so the sensitive nerves inside your teeth don’t get disturbed by the things you eat and drink. While enamel is naturally strong and tough, it can often use a little reinforcement to ensure it’s doing the best job possible. That’s where fluoride comes in.
Fluoride is a natural element that’s actually quite abundant and can be found in everything from water to toothpaste to oral supplements.
Why is Fluoride Beneficial?
Since fluoride occurs in so many forms—whether naturally or because it’s added by humans—it must be a pretty important substance, right? In fact, there are quite a few benefits of fluoride. Here are a few:
- Reduces tooth decay. Because the enamel is stronger, it’s able to stand up to the bad bacteria that can cause damage far easier than weaker teeth can. This, in turn, reduces the occurrence of cavities and more serious decay.
- Builds more fortified tooth structures. Teeth that are fortified with fluoride can withstand acid at greater levels of intensity. This is important because acidic foods and drinks really are everywhere and it’s best to arm your teeth with optimal protection whenever you can.
- It’s easy to access. Many towns and cities add fluoride to their water, but even if your tap water doesn’t contain fluoride, your dentist may be able to prescribe tablets that simply dissolve in pitchers of water you pour at home. It’s also available at grocery stores in the form of toothpaste, health stores in the form of vitamin supplements, and, of course, at your local dentist’s office when you receive your regular treatments.
Do you have questions about how fluoride can impact your unique smile? If you’re in Beavercreek, OH, schedule an appointment with Dr. Salvatore Marc DiBenedetto, D.D.S. and his dental team today!