Fluoride strengthens tooth enamel and fights cavities, which is why it’s found in so many toothpastes and mouthwashes. Here are some tips for parents to ensure their kids are receiving the right amount of fluoride for optimal dental care.
Choose the right toothpaste.
Look for the American Dental Association’s seal of acceptance, which is only given to brands that contain fluoride. ADA-accepted toothpaste is also free of flavors or other ingredients that may potentially harm teeth, such as sugar.
Look for bottled water with fluoride.
Some brands of bottled water contain fluoride to boost dental health. If your family frequently drinks bottled water at home, check the label for fluoride content. If a particular brand isn’t fluoridated, consider switching to one that is.
Overdo fluoride treatments.
Too much fluoride can lead to dental fluorosis, a condition that occurs while teeth are developing. Upon eruption, white lines or streaks may appear on kids’ teeth. While the discoloration is harmless, it can be bothersome from a cosmetic perspective. Work with your dentist to determine the proper amount of fluoride to provide your child.
Let young children use fluoride products unsupervised.
Most kids can start brushing their own teeth at around age 6. Before then, while you’re helping your child learn proper dental care practices, keep an eye on them when they brush. Make sure they know they shouldn’t swallow the toothpaste when they’re done. While a small amount of toothpaste shouldn’t be harmful, too much fluoride can cause an upset stomach.
For more advice regarding fluoride and dental care for your child, turn to Pedodontic Associates. For over 25 years, they’ve provided quality care to young patients within a relaxed office environment. Along with routine exams and cleanings, they offer fluoride treatments for kids with a higher risk of tooth decay. To schedule an appointment, call (808) 735-1733 for the Honolulu office, (808) 487-7933 for Aiea, or (808) 877-0066 for Kahului. Prepare for your child’s first visit with information on the website.