Fluoride is a mineral that occurs naturally in all water sources, including the oceans. Research has shown that fluoride not only reduces cavities in children and adults, but it also helps repair the early stages of tooth decay, even before the decay is visible. Fluoride is the best cavity fighter to help keep the whole family's teeth strong — no matter their ages.
When it reaches your teeth, fluoride is absorbed into the enamel. It helps to repair the enamel by replenishing the lost calcium and phosphorous to keep your teeth hard. This process is caused remineralization. When fluoride is present during remineralization, the minerals deposited into the tooth enamel help strengthen your teeth and prevent dissolution during the next demineralization phase. Thus, fluoride helps stop the decay process and prevent tooth decay.
*Fluoride should only be used by children ages 2 and up, or as directed by a dentist.
Fluoride is a natural mineral found throughout the earth's crust and widely distributed in nature. Some foods and water supplies contain fluoride.
Fluoride is often added to drinking water to help reduce tooth decay. In the 1930s, researchers found that people who grew up drinking naturally fluoridated water had up to two-thirds fewer cavities than people living in areas without fluoridated water. Studies since then have repeatedly shown that when fluoride is added to a community's water supply, tooth decay decreases. The American Dental Association, the World Health Organization and the American Medical Association, among many other organizations, have endorsed the use of fluoride in water supplies because of its effect on tooth decay.
Fluoride helps prevent cavities in two different ways:
• Fluoride concentrates in the growing bones and developing teeth of children, helping to harden the enamel on baby and adult teeth before they emerge.
• Fluoride helps to harden the enamel on adult teeth that have already emerged.
Fluoride works during the demineralization and remineralization processes that naturally occur in your mouth.
• After you eat, your saliva contains acids that cause demineralization a dissolving of the calcium and phosphorous under the tooth's surface.