When most of us think of fluoride, we think of the fluoride that is present in our toothpaste or in our drinking water, although not all states fluoridate their water. In the communities around the US where the water is not fluoridated, fluoride supplementation is common.
Young children (ages 4 and up) often get fluoride treatments at the general dentist or Pediatric dentist’s office when having their teeth cleaned and checked annually. This has been shown to decrease the prevalence of dental Dentalnews caries. Adult periodontal patients often receive fluoride treatments as well following the traditional surgery (sutures and cutting) which can cause tooth sensitivity. Laser Periodontal surgery doesn’t have this side effect.
There has been a debate raging in the dental community about the pros and cons of fluoride usage.
The pros include:
Prevention of tooth and root decay
Anti-bacterial action against some forms of gum disease, in conjunction with daily oral hygiene and visits to your dentist or periodontist
Alleviating symptoms of tooth or exposed root sensitivity
Controlling bad breath
Easy application with toothpastes, gels, and rinses
The cons Infection 3 Weeks After Wisdom Teeth Removal include:
Possible concern with over dosage of fluoride (the combination of water, drops, pastes, rinses, pills, etc.)
Some professionals believe that fluoride can be toxic (This has not been proven.)
Concern about the levels of fluoride in community drinking water
Possible systemic effects not yet seen in the population
In our own 26-year-old periodontal practice, we will often suggest the use of non-dietary sources of fluoride, including gels, rinses, and pastes. This has been a recommended part of all our patients’ daily oral hygiene regimens.
Does your daily oral care routine include fluoride in any form? What do you think about the current fluoride debate?