Fluoride, a natural mineral found in earth’s crust is added to water and toothpaste to help prevent tooth decay and even has an ability to reverse early stages of tooth decay. Studies show that people who grew up drinking fluoridated water have fewer cavities than the people living in areas without fluoridated water do.
In this article, we will discuss about the importance of fluoride in child’s oral health.
Need of fluoride for child’s oral health
Fluoride is essential for all children. Bacteria in the mouth react with sugary or starchy food and forms acid. This acid attacks the teeth. Fluoride helps in protecting teeth from acid damage and reverses the early signs of tooth decay. Fluoride is much important for the children of age group 6-7 years, as fluoride is incorporated in the development of permanent teeth. Therefore, it is important to make sure that your child gets enough fluoride.
Ask your child’s dentist about the fluoride and he may recommend a fluoride treatment during the various stages of your child development.
How fluoride works?
Fluoride concentrates in to growing teeth and bones of the children thus help harden the enamel of the milk teeth and the permanent teeth before they emerge. Fluoride also works in demineralization and demineralization processes:
- After you eat, your saliva becomes acidic and cause the calcium and phosphorous under the tooth surface to dissolve. This is called as demineralization.
- At other times when your saliva is less acidic, it does the opposite. It replenishes the calcium and phosphorous. This is called demineralization. This helps in strengthening the teeth.
Sources of fluoride
Many food and drinks naturally contains fluoride. It can also be applied directly to teeth through fluoridated mouthwashes and toothpastes Dentist sometimes if required apply fluoride to teeth as gel or varnish. This treatment contains much higher amount of fluoride than toothpastes and mouth washes.
Dentists recommends children aged 2-5 years of age to brush using a pea size amount of toothpaste and twice daily. Recommendations for the use of fluoride toothpaste for children under 2 years of age vary. Consult your child’s dentist before beginning to brush with fluoride toothpaste.