Fluoride is a mineral added to the public water supply and various oral hygiene products including toothpaste and mouth rinses for the purpose of cavity prevention. For some people who may be at a higher risk for developing decay, professional fluoride treatments are recommended.
Professional fluoride application helps protect teeth against plaque and cavities by strengthening enamel and arresting early signs of decay.
The enamel of the tooth can be weakened through a process known as demineralization which happens with exposure to acids produced when the sugars in our foods are broken down by bacteria. Fluoride helps mineralize the enamel and restore its strength.
In children with developing teeth, fluoride becomes a part of the structure of developing permanent teeth, making the enamel stronger and more resistant to acid exposure. In people with fully developed teeth, fluoride application aids in the remineralization process to help strengthen the enamel.
A topical fluoride application is a simple treatment that can be completed in a single visit. It involves the use of fluoride foam, gel or varnish applied to the teeth, sometimes using customs trays that are fitted to your mouth. Following fluoride treatment, it is advised not to eat or drink for at least 30 minutes to allow the teeth to absorb the fluoride properly.
Fluoride application is recommended at each cleaning appointment to ensure that your teeth are as resistant to decay as possible.
Call our office at (865) 483-2356 to learn more about how professional fluoride treatments can be beneficial for you.