Fluoride: To Err is Human. To Fluoridate is Beautiful.
Policy Statement Regarding Fluoride:
Fluoride use can be a controversial topic about which we are asked routinely. Consistent with the AAPD, ADA and our medical pals at the AMA, we advocate the use of fluoride, in age appropriate amounts to be determined by your pediatric dental provider, starting as early as the eruption of the first baby tooth.
Hi, I’m Fluoride, have we met?
Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that is often present in water, even without fluoridation. Fluoride has played a critical role in the reduced prevalence and severity of dental caries in the US. It works both topically (on the teeth) and systemically (in the blood) to stop bacteria from creating caries. Fluoridating the water is the most reasonable and cost-effective method of improving fluoride access to one’s community. But be careful: between 1-3 years old, an excess ingestion of fluoride may bring about cosmetic concerns (fluorosis) with the permanent molars and incisors, since during this important time period those teeth are still undergoing calcification.
Low Dose High Frequency
Fact: the best way to use fluoride to reduce caries risk is a low dose exposure repeatedly throughout the day. Using a fluoridated toothpaste, drinking fluoridated water, using an over-the-counter fluoride rinse, and eating a good, healthy diet, all work together to reduce caries risk.
Don’t Like Reading? Here’s the Cliff Notes
- We recommend the use of fluoride toothpaste… and talk to your pediatric dentist about the when to start fluoride for your little one (FYI…It can be a rice-size to a smear-size for patients under 3, and a pea-size for patients 3-6)
- We recommend exposure to fluoridated water
- We recommend the use of prescription strength fluoride supplements, on a case-by-case basis
- We recommend anticipatory guidance, which helps to reduce caries risk by counseling the family regarding fluoride, diet, and consumption of sugary drinks