What is dental fluoride and who needs it?

Dentists have been using an element known as fluoride to help protect the smile from damage caused by infection and decay. At Taylor Street Dental, Drs. Peck, Homsi, Tyra, and Seo can evaluate an individual in the dentist’s chair to determine if they could benefit from fluoride treatments.

What is fluoride and what can it do?

Fluoride is a natural element that can be found in water, soil, and even plants. It has been used for decades to help prevent cavities and tooth decay. When fluoride is added to the community water supply, it helps to protect everyone’s teeth, especially children who are more prone to cavities. At the dental office, it can be manually applied to strengthen teeth.

How do fluoride treatments at the dental office work?

Fluoride treatments at the dentist usually involve a gel applied to the teeth for one to four minutes. The fluoride helps to strengthening the tooth enamel and make it more resistant to cavities. It is important to note that fluoride treatments only work when they are used along with good oral hygiene habits, such as brushing and flossing regularly and biannual visits to the dental office for cleanings and examinations.

How do I know if I need dental fluoride?

If you live in an area with fluoridated water, you may not need additional fluoride. However, if you live in an area without fluoridated water, your dentist may recommend fluoride treatments or supplements. Your dentist can also evaluate your risk for tooth decay and make specific recommendations based on your individual needs.

Is there such a thing as too much fluoride?

Yes, it is possible to have too much fluoride. This can lead to a condition called fluorosis, which causes white spots or streaks on the teeth. Fluorosis is most often seen in children who consume large amounts of fluoride while their teeth are developing. To help prevent fluorosis, it is important to follow the recommendations of your dentist or other oral health care provider regarding the use of fluoride supplements and treatments.

Where can I have fluoride treatments provided?

If you reside in the Springfield, MA area, you may want to take the time to talk to the dentists of Taylor Street Dental to determine if you are a good candidate for fluoride treatments. The office can be reached to request an appointment by calling 413-781-7645.

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