What is Fluoride?
Fluoride is a natural mineral found throughout the Earth’s crust. Fluoride is also found in some food and water supplies.
How does it work?
Fluoride concentrates in the growing bones and developing teeth of children, helping to harden the enamel before and after eruption. Fluoride also helps adult teeth by hardening the enamel on their erupted teeth.
Fluoride works during the demineralization and remineralization process that naturally occurs in the mouth. After you eat, your mouth is under attack by acids found in your food and drinks. This process is called demineralization, which dissolves the calcium and phosphorous under the tooth’s surface. At other times when your mouth is less acidic, your saliva replenishes the calcium and phosphorous that keeps tooth enamel hard, this is called remineralization. During the process of remineralization, the minerals that strengthen your teeth are harder due to the presence of fluoride.
How do I know if I am receiving enough fluoride?
Check to see if your community water is fluoridated by calling your local water district, brush regularly with fluoridated toothpaste, and inquire about fluoride treatments your dentist can provide. These steps will aid in keeping your healthy smile!