Does Fluoride Treatment Help Adults?

Does Fluoride Treatment Help Adults?

Sep 01, 2022

What Is Fluoride Treatment?

It is a treatment that enriches teeth enamels to keep them strong and healthy. The treatment relies on fluoride, a natural mineral that should be present in everyday foods like:

  1. Tea
  2. Fluoridated tap water
  3. Boiled foods
  4. Fish with bones

You need treatment if you are not getting sufficient fluoride from natural sources. The only way to know whether you need fluoride treatment is by consulting a dentist.

The treatment will benefit your teeth as it contains a high concentration of fluoride that is absent from natural sources.

What Are the Different Types of Fluoride Treatment?

Fluoride treatment is available in different sources. However, the US FDA has only accepted the following types as clinically effective for strengthening teeth and keeping them healthy:

  1. Stannous fluoride – is also called tin fluoride. It was a popular fluoride in the 1950s.
  2. Sodium fluoride – is a fluoride salt that gained popularity in the 1980s, present in oral rinses and dentifrices.
  3. Sodium monofluorophosphate – was first used in Colgate toothpaste. It features lower reactivity because of its covalent bond.

Can Adults Benefit from Fluoride?

Ideally, fluoride treatment is a preventive dental protocol popular in pediatric dentistry. Children are the most beneficiaries of the treatment, especially during the cavity-prone ages of 6 to 14. However, it does not exclude adults from benefiting from the treatment.

Fluoride treatment for adults is available in many dental facilities to help protect teeth from damage, particularly for patients with a moderate-to-high risk of developing tooth decay.

How Do I Know If I Need a Supplemental Fluoride Treatment?

Fluoride treatments work by influencing the demineralization/remineralization balance. It refers to teeth’ ability to absorb minerals available in foods you eat sufficiently.

You will need a fluoride treatment if your teeth cannot absorb minerals well. Some of the factors that can help you determine that you need fluoride treatment at The Art of Dentistry:

  1. Dry mouth or reduced saliva
  2. Plaque and tartar on teeth’ surfaces
  3. Hypersensitivity – if your teeth are highly sensitive to temperature changes and air, you may need fluoride treatment.
  4. Darkening of teeth – black or brown streaks on teeth are indicators of the early development of dental cavities. Fluoride treatment can help reverse the cavity development process if you get it before the cavities emerge.
  5. Weak or brittle bones – fluoride is not only found in teeth but also bones. If your jawbone feels weak and undergoes discomfort when you chew, a fluoride treatment may be necessary.

How Can Fluoride Treatment Better Your Oral Health?

If your dentist recommends starting your fluoride treatment, it means your teeth need extra reinforcement to remain healthy and strong.

Some of the ways that the treatment affects your oral health are:

  1. Increases your teeth’ resistance to bacteria that cause dental cavities.
  2. Helps repair weak tooth enamel – fluoride increases your teeth’ ability to reabsorb vital minerals like calcium and phosphate to sustain health and strength.
  3. Slows and reverses the development of cavities – fluoride will harm all bacteria that aggravate dental caries.
  4. Delays the need for dental restorative treatments – like dental fillings, root canal therapies, or tooth extractions.
  5. Prolongs the life of baby teeth by preventing premature tooth loss. This benefit will avoid many other dental problems, including teeth misalignment.

Are There Side Effects of Fluoride Treatment?

Even though fluoride treatment is safe for children and adults, you may encounter some complications. The complications often arise due to miscues or overuse of fluoride treatment.

Some of the side effects of fluoride treatments are:

  1. Fluoride poisoning – is a very rare yet possible complication. It occurs due to chronic overexposure to fluoride compounds.
  2. Nausea
  3. Diarrhea
  4. White specs on teeth – typically on adults’ mature teeth
  5. Bone homeostasis – particularly for small children whose bones are still developing.
  6. Very dense but weak bones

Summary

Ultimately, fluoride treatment is a perfect solution for strengthening teeth and decreasing the risk of bacteria that cause oral infections. However, you must use it in moderation.

It is the reason you must ensure you get your treatment done by a dentist or dental hygienist in a clinic near you instead of doing it yourself at home.

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