Perhaps you've heard of fluoride. It is a mineral that your teeth use to make strong, healthy enamel. If you have been getting a lot of cavities lately, your dentist may advise you to use more fluoride to help harden your enamel and protect against future decay. So, how do you go about exposing your teeth to more fluoride? Here are some top approaches to consider.
This is a good option for anyone who does not want to change their daily habits, and it's also a good choice for those with very weak enamel. A fluoride treatment is done in your dentist's office. They prepare a special tray of high-concentration fluoride solution that you bite into. The tray stays in place for a few minutes, exposing your teeth to lots of fluoride. The dentist then rinses away the excess fluoride solution and sends you on your way. Just one or two fluoride treatments can make a big difference in your enamel strength. However, dental insurance does not always cover them.
If your dental insurance does not cover fluoride treatments, this is a more affordable alternative to consider. Your dentist can prescribe a fluoride rinse for you to use at home after you brush your teeth. You'll use it just like a regular mouthwash. Swish it around for a while, and then spit it out. Avoid eating for a little while afterward so you don't disturb the fluoride lingering on your teeth.
Most toothpaste already contains fluoride, but if your enamel is notably weak, your dentist may prescribe you a toothpaste that is even higher in fluoride than usual. You may be told to use this toothpaste once a day and to use your normal toothpaste for your second brushing. High-fluoride toothpaste does not always taste the best, but it is easy to use, affordable, and effective. Make sure you do not swallow it, as consuming excess fluoride is not healthy.
If you are currently drinking bottled water that does not contain fluoride, switch to a brand that is enhanced with fluoride. You can do this in conjunction with any of the treatments above. Every little bit helps.
Fluoride is necessary for healthy, strong tooth enamel, and many people do not get enough. Talk to your family dentistry professional about these ways to get more fluoride, and see which approach they recommend for your teeth.