Does the word “fluoride” strike fear into your heart? Don’t let it scare you! Fluoride, from a dental perspective, is a simple and effective way to help reduce the number of cavity cases and strengthen everyone’s tooth enamel.
Benefits of Fluoride
Fluoride helps to remineralize tooth enamel, fostering the growth of stronger enamel crystals and prevents tooth decay as a result. Even with a widespread availability of other dental products that contain fluoride, statistics have shown that having fluoride in the water supply still has a positive impact on reducing tooth decay rates. Fluoridated water is able to reach all age groups and kinds of individuals, which is a big deal for those who may have difficulty brushing due to some medical impediment. In poorer communities, fluoridated water can have a huge impact on the overall quality of oral health. It should also be noted that fluoride can already be found in natural water sources like lakes and rivers, and so having it present in our water supply is not a major change. In fact, adding a little fluoride won’t even change the taste or smell of the water.
What’s the fuss about then?
Like any other good thing, fluoride can be harmful in higher quantities. Research has attributed fluoride to a high risk of developing kidney disease, for example. However, the amount of fluoride that is added to the water supply in cities is not high enough for this to be a real cause of concern. Instead, the so called “Fluoride Debate” is viewed by many as mainly a social and political issue, rather than a health concern. Think of fluoride like milk. Drinking milk is a great source of calcium for kids, but if they drink too much it can cause intestinal problems. The fact is anything — even water or oxygen can be harmful in too high a dose.
The fluoride debate is an ongoing issue, and it has been brought up again recently during city council meetings. If you’re interested, doing some more research into the topic and the debate around it might be worth your while. In the meantime, double check that you’re using a toothpaste that has fluoride and visit your dentist for regular fluoride rinses to ensure your tooth enamel is kept strong. Centennial Smiles is more than happy to discuss any questions you may have. Call us at 587-353-5060 today!