Cavities & Teeth Fluoridation
1. Reminder on the formation of caries
Permanently, a thin invisible film of salivary origin is deposited on the teeth. This biofilm, very quickly colonized by bacteria naturally present in the mouth, is the dental plaque. In the absence of regular brushing, bacteria proliferate, creating successive, organized layers, more and more resistant. In addition, plaque bacteria transform the sugars contained in food residues into acids, acids which then attack the tooth enamel and decalcify it. Repeated acid attacks destroy the enamel and form a cavity in the tooth.
The 3 main areas of caries prevention are:
Regular and meticulous brushing with fluoride products adapted to his age allowing good oral hygiene (tip: brush your teeth in front of him)
Avoid sugary snacks between meals, limit your intake of sugars
Preventive sealing of grooves (at 6 and 12 years old)
Fluoridation, throughout the eruption of teeth (from 6 to 13 years old)
2. Why fluoride
The action of fluorides has 3 major benefits:
Reinforcement of the enamel resistance to acids,
Slower decalcification of enamel,
Possible remineralization of decalcified enamel allowing to stop or even repair a beginning cavity.
3. Why fluoridation at the dentist
If you still use fluoridated salt and fluoridated toothpaste every day, you will have already done the essentials to protect yourself effectively against cavities.
In order to increase protection against cavities, the dentist will strengthen the enamel by placing a gel highly concentrated in fluoride in a gutter. The fluorine is then deposited on all the teeth, thus making it possible to protect all the zones, in particular those where the risk of decay is the greatest, such as the newly released permanent molars. This is why application twice a year is recommended to cover the teeth as they erupt.
It is important to remember that optimal fluoridation of your teeth does not exempt you from regular brushing of your teeth and respect for a healthy diet that spares your teeth.
4. Attention fluorosis - consult to avoid overdoses
Fluoride is therefore beneficial in preventing dental caries; however an overdose over a long period (months or years) occurring during the period of mineralization of the teeth, that is to say the 3 years preceding their eruption, can cause dental fluorosis.
Fluorosis is irreversible and is manifested by whitish spots, even brown in the most severe cases.
This is why it is necessary to use a toothpaste whose fluorine concentration is adapted to the age of the child and its ability to rinse the mouth well so as not to swallow the fluoride.