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Fluoride and Your Child: What Every Parent Should Know

added on: December 11, 2018
young boy brushing teeth

If you research fluoride, and specifically the use of fluoride in kids, you’ll probably stumble across some information suggesting fluoride isn’t safe for kids. At our Spring pediatric dental office, we’d like to explain why fluoride actually is a safe and important part of your child’s dental health.

What is Fluoride and What Does it Do?

Before we can explain why fluoride is important, we need to explain what it is. Fluoride is a mineral found naturally in many foods and in our drinking water. Fluoride actually helps prevent tooth decay by making it more difficult for acids in the mouth to eat away at teeth. Most importantly, fluoride can reverse early tooth decay and help prevent cavities. In fact, toothpaste that contains fluoride reduces cavities in kids by 30% and water sources that incorporate fluoridation lower cavity rates by up to 40%!

When is Fluoride Most Important?

When should you start exposing your kids to fluoride? Our Spring pediatric dental office recommends that infants and children be exposed to fluoride from 6 months of age until about 16 years. However, simply because a child has reached 16 doesn’t mean they can no longer benefit from fluoride. The truth is, adults should also receive some sort of fluoride treatment occasionally to keep fighting tooth decay.

Does “The More, The Better” Rule Apply to Fluoride?

At our pediatric dental office in Spring, we encourage the use of fluoride to build strong and healthy smiles. But keep in mind, fluoride should be used only as directed. It is very important that a child’s use of fluoride, or products containing fluoride, be closely monitored by an adult.

Here are a few tips to help you monitor the use of fluoride products in your kids:

  • Keep fluoride supplements out of the reach of children
  • Avoid flavored toothpaste to discourage swallowing of the paste
  • Use only a pea-size amount of toothpaste with fluoride in it

If your child is due for a dental check-up, give our Spring pediatric dental office a call today! We’ll make sure your kid’s smile is growing healthy and strong.

Welcoming new patients from Spring, The Woodlands, and surrounding areas.