According to the American Dental Association, cavities or tooth decay is one of the most common dental concerns among children. This condition arises when the tooth enamel starts to erode after a series of attacks by bacterial plaque. This is one of the reasons why dentists recommend regular brushing with fluoride toothpaste.
Fluoride is known as a ‘natural cavity fighter’ for children and adults alike. It makes the enamel strong enough to withstand bacterial attacks, reverses signs of tooth decay in its early stage, and helps rebuild the enamel if it has already weakened.
Other than fluoride toothpaste, you can rinse your mouth with fluoride, take fluoride supplements, or get fluoride treatment. Here’s all you need to know about fluoride treatment for children:
Why does your child need it?
Your dentist will recommend fluoride treatment for your little one if they’re at a risk of developing a cavity. This is especially true for kids who consume high amounts of sugary candies and chocolates on daily basis.
Sugar is one of the key drivers of plaque accumulation on the tooth surface. Fluoride treatments are beneficial for children because they’re not capable of brushing or flossing their teeth as effectively as parents do. Kids pay little attention to the space between the teeth. These are the main hiding spots for bacteria.
Another reason why mouth rinse and toothpaste doesn’t work the same for kids is because there’s a chance they’ll swallow it. Swallowed toothpaste can be quite a problem if you aren’t using the recommended amount of toothpaste.
How does fluoride treatment work?
The fluoride solution administered by a dentist comes in various forms including concentrated foam, gel, varnish or rinse. These solutions are generally more concentrated as compared to your toothpaste or fluoride supplements. The form of fluoride used for every individual depends on unique circumstances and individual needs of the patient. The dentist then applies the solution using a swab, brush, or tray. Although the treatment doesn’t take too long your dentist may suggest not to eat or drink for roughly half an hour so the fluoride can sit in well.
Drugstore fluoride gels vs. professional dental treatment
A dentist administers controlled and ADA recommended concentrations of the solution. Your dentist will customize the concentration as per the need of your child’s condition. Other than that, dentists have years of experience and therefore apply the solution with enhanced precision and accuracy.
If your child has braces, you need to practice extra care and precaution while applying the gel. A dentist on the other hand is well aware of the risk factors and ensures maximum safety for the child’s teeth.