Many people are confused about the role that fluoride plays in the prevention of cavities, or believe that they are getting enough through oral care products and drinking water. Actually, like most municipalities in BC, Richmond does not add fluoride to the community drinking water. So it is imperative that you use products that contain fluoride for your best shot at keeping cavities at bay.
What is fluoride?
Fluoride a naturally occurring mineral that can be found in soil, water, and certain foods. Fluoride helps to strengthen the enamel and protect against cavities. Unfortunately, the amount of fluoride you consume through food and water is not enough to offer protection against decay.
How to ensure that you and your family are getting enough fluoride
Brushing twice daily with a toothpaste that contains fluoride is generally sufficient. When shopping for toothpastes, look for brands that have a seal of approval from either the Canadian or American Dental Association. If you still find that you are getting cavities, ask your dentist about a special prescription- only toothpaste, which contains a higher amount of fluoride.
It’s especially important that children get the right amount of fluoride as childhood decay and tooth loss can negatively impact the child’s permanent teeth. If you have young children, you can find fluoride toothpastes formulated for kids in flavours such as bubblegum and berry in most drugstores. While fluoride is safe to use, it’s important to make sure that your children don’t ingest it.
Even if you are brushing twice a day with the right toothpaste, it’s still important to visit your dentist twice a year for a cleaning and exam. This way your Richmond dentist will be able to remove any plaque or tartar buildup and spot any cavities early on, while they are still easy to treat. At Clear Dental here in Richmond, BC, we offer fluoride treatments with each cleaning and exam for added cavity protection between visits.