Everywhere you turn, it seems like fluoride is always there. It seems almost unavoidable. It’s in the water you drink, the food you eat, the toothpaste you use, and even in some of the vitamins and supplements you take on a daily basis. Is it really safe for your child to consume so much fluoride?
Learn more about whether or not it is safe for your child to consume fluoride.
Is Fluoride Safe?
A simple answer to this question is “yes,” fluoride is safe. It is a natural element that can be found anywhere from lakes and streams to oceans and certain types of foods. In fact, it is all but impossible to completely avoid fluoride, as simply eating and drinking water exposes you to it.
Fluoride use or consumption has been proven to strengthen tooth enamel and can even reverse early damage caused by tooth decay. Consuming the right amount of fluoride can help improve your child’s oral health.
Why are Parents Concerned about Fluoride?
Parents aren’t so much concerned about fluoride as they are concerned about their children being exposed to too much fluoride. There are concerns that overexposure to fluoride can cause health and dental problems.
Overexposure to fluoride happens as a result of it being added to all types of foods, beverages, and dental products. If your child is getting the proper amount of fluoride from drinking water and eating a healthy diet, the additional fluoride in products could result in them consuming more than their body needs.
Should I Limit My Child’s Exposure to Fluoride?
Making the decision to limit your child’s exposure to additional fluoride is a personal choice and one that should be made on a case-by-case basis. Factors such as oral hygiene habits, diet, previous health history, family history of dental problems, and the type of water consumed (well water, bottled water, and tap water) will determine if additional fluoride is needed.
Prevent Fluorosis with help from Healthcare Professionals
Dental fluorosis is a term used to describe when the appearance and look of the protective enamel of the teeth changed as a result of consuming too much fluoride. Typically, this dental problem happens when younger children consume too much fluoride while their permanent teeth are still growing beneath the gum.
While dental fluorosis turns teeth a yellowish-brown color, it doesn’t actually cause any dental problems. It only causes teeth to appear stained or discolored. However, if you want your child’s teeth to remain natural looking and not appear to have yellow or brown stains, you will want to work with dentists and healthcare professionals to prevent fluorosis.
Working closely with dentists and healthcare professionals can help you determine how much fluoride your child needs. Once this is determined, you can take preventative measures – such as not using fluoride mouthwash or giving your child fluoride supplements – to stop fluorosis.
Determining how much fluoride your child needs can also help you determine if additional fluoride is needed. If your child is not getting enough fluoride with the use of fluoride toothpaste and by drinking fluoride-enhanced water, you may need to consider adding supplemental fluoride. Healthcare professionals and dentists can help you determine if additional fluoride is needed. They can also provide recommendations for how to get your child additional fluoride. One option is undergoing regular fluoride treatments at the dentist’s office or taking prescription fluoride tablets.
Discussing Fluoride with a Professional
If you are concerned about your child’s fluoride intake, call The Pediatric Dentistry of Central Florida to schedule an appointment with our pediatric dentist. Our pediatric dentist will not only determine if your child is in need of fluoride treatments, but a checkup will be done to assess your child’s oral health and see if there are any dental problems.
Call the office of the Pediatric Dentistry of Central Florida to schedule an appointment for your child. We look forward to welcoming you to our dental family and helping you maintain and improve your child’s oral health.