Fluoride Treatment at Bowie, MD, Dentistry
Professional fluoride treatments are a necessary and important part of your dental care. Visiting your dentist for regular fluoride treatments every 12 months can help strengthen enamel, protect against cavities, and prevent tooth decay.
Superior Cosmetic and Family Dentistry is happy to provide these treatments for our patients in Bowie, Maryland.
What Is Fluoride?
Fluoride is a mineral found in our bodies, primarily in our bones and teeth. Fluoride occurs in abundance across nature in soil, plants, and certain foods. Because of its widely-accepted health benefits, fluoridated drinking water commonly comes from our taps to promote regular absorption.
How It Works
Tooth enamel is the hard, outer coating that protects our teeth, and fluoride strengthens that enamel. When you take in fluoride from water, toothpaste, or mouth rinses, your saliva works to use calcium and phosphate to create a substance known as fluorapatite. Fluorapatite is what builds up to create a strong layer on the outside of your teeth, and it protects your enamel while also helping prevent cavities and tooth decay.
However, the fluoride you receive from these sources is often not enough to support your enamel and prevent dental problems. That’s why you need regular fluoride treatments from your local dentist.
While we encourage all of our patients to get regular fluoride treatments, certain people are at higher risk for dental problems. Those who often benefit most from fluoride treatments include those who:
- Consume high amounts of carbohydrates and sugars
- Have poor oral hygiene
- Suffer from dry mouth
- Have dental problems such as sensitive roots or exposed pits in the teeth
- Are not receiving an adequate amount of fluoride from natural sources
Fluoride Treatment Appointment
Fluoride treatments are simple, affordable, and effective. First, patients undergo a dental exam to make sure their teeth are healthy enough for a fluoride treatment. The dentist will then perform a professional cleaning to prepare the teeth to receive the fluoride.
After that, the fluoride treatment will begin. The dentist will apply the fluoride as a concentrated varnish on the outside of the patient’s teeth. The patient will wait a small amount of time for the fluoride varnish to set, and we ask them not to eat or drink anything hot or crunchy for 3 to 4 hours after fluoride application.
In addition to topical fluoride, dentists offer prescription fluoride supplements if needed to prevent tooth decay and cavities, particularly in children.