The Benefits Of Fluoride

Posted on Sep 05, 2012 by William J. Claiborne, DDS MS

If your faucets bring fluoridated water into your home, your oral health benefits greatly. Most of the public water supplies in the U.S. now include fluoride. Studies estimate an 18–40% reduction in cavities when water fluoridation is used. It’s so beneficial that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control named water fluoridation among the ten great public health achievements of the 20th century.

While fluoride has proven effective in preventing cavities, it also promotes and remineralizes tooth enamel, alters the development process of oral bacteria, and combats some bacteria that lead to periodontal disease. Drinking fluoridated water even adds low levels of fluoride to saliva, giving you continual oral saturation.

If you do not consume fluoridated water (perhaps you use a water filtration system or well water, for example), you can still prevent cavities from occurring. Always use toothpaste with fluoride, use a tongue scraper daily, swish at least 30 seconds with a fluoridated rinse, and floss each evening before your final brushing. At your six-month check-ups, ask your Dentist or Hygienist about having sealants applied for added protection.

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