Topical fluoride.When we say topical it suggests that relating or applied on to a district of the body. This is the fluoride in our toothpaste, gels, and rinses. These are placed directly onto the teeth.
Systemic fluoride. Systemic fluoride gets ingested to the body. It will be eaten through fluoridated water, fluoride containing food or prescription supplements from dentists. It gets incorporated into developing tooth buds in children, therefore, the teeth can be more resistant to tooth decay.
Topical and Systemic Fluoride will each facilitate stop cavities by strengthening the enamel in our teeth.
Fluoride can greatly help reverse early signs of tooth decay.
The importance of fluoride
It has been said that fluoride is beneficial to everyone’s (including children) oral health.
It is because the fluorine mineral helps prevent cavities by protecting the enamel from acidity due to the plaque build-up.
This is possible by its ability to remineralize our tooth’s top layer which is the enamel.
Each day, minerals are lost from enamel by acid. The fluoride content found in foods we consume and water we intake redeposits the enamel layer.
The argument against fluoride
Water fluoridation was endorsed by U.S Public Health Service because they have seen a few pieces of evidence of fluoride’s safety and benefits.
After some years, the majority of the countries around the globe have rejected the practice. 70% of Americans and the 200 million people from different countries are now drinking fluoridated water.
Debunking the Myths
To Fluoride or Not To Fluoride?
Now that we know what fluoride is– let’s debunk these myths. What goes into that toothpaste is a little bit more controversial.
Myth: “Fluoride is not natural.”
Fact: Fluoride natura. It is present in many foods and also in our water. Even the water in our oceans has fluoride in it. Water fluoridation is simply the adaptation of fluoride that happens naturally to a safe and recommended level for preventing tooth decay.
Myth: Fluoride in drinking water is not needed. We have fluoride in our toothpaste
Fact: According to American Dental Association, fluoride toothpaste can protect our teeth from cavities and the fluoridated water is the extended protection of everyone’s teeth from decay.
There are cases in which the fluoride in our toothpaste is not enough. This is why some dentists and pediatricians would prescribe fluoride supplements especially to children living in non-fluoridated places.
Fluoridation offers an easy, painful-free, inexpensive preventive strategy to prevent cavities and strengthen dental health that everyone can benefit from by simply drinking their water.
Myth: Studies show that fluoride can lower your children’s IQ
Fact: There are already questions from different countries around the world about the potential effects of high levels of fluoride on the intelligence and behavior of one’s person.
However, these studies were poorly designed, and have gathered unreliable data and were
not peer-reviewed by independent scientists. It is really difficult to conduct a study of human’s intelligence and behavior and finding the links of it to fluoride consumption might need a stronger evidence.
Researchers and dental professionals who evaluated these studies also emphasized that the lower IQs caused by fluoride could be traced to other factors, such as arsenic exposure (This is a long-term exposure to a chemical element, mainly through drinking-water and food) the burning of high-fluoride coal inside homes and the eating of contaminated grain.
Myth: Fluoride causes cancer.
Fact: According to the American Cancer Society, there is no link between cancer rates in humans and the optimal levels of fluoride in drinking water.
Community water fluoridation was introduced long before (as early as 1945). There have been 50 epidemiologic studies conducted over a period of time in different populations. And based on these research, there were numerous times that they have failed to show or prove a link between fluoride or water fluoridation and the risks of getting cancer.
Myth: Adding fluoride is like forcing people to take medicine.
Fact: Fluoride is not a medication. Just like the herbal supplements, these are not considered as medications. These are supplements which can provide health benefits to your body helping you fight various of diseases.
It is a natural element – a mineral; and when it is presented at the right controlled level, fluoride in drinking water has beneficial effects: preventing tooth decay. However, the most critical issue in maintaining healthy teeth is to have good oral hygiene and stay away from cavity promoting food and drinks. Even with the presence of fluoride, if you consume sugar all day long, the risk of developing cavity will be inevitable.
If you have questions about how you can optimally maintain your dental health, Dr. Stella Oh and Dr. Ash Estafan can help you. Book an appointment online or call us at our office. Madison Avenue Dentists aims to help you maintain proper dental care.