Fluoride is one of the superstar ingredients in dental products. We see it in toothpaste, mouthwashes, dental flosses, and even the water that we drink! There are also foods that are rich in fluorides, such as spinach, grapes, and potatoes.
Despite the presence of fluoride in the products we use and food that we consume, there have been concerns about the safety of fluoride. There’s been a recent controversy around the health risks associated with excessive use and exposure to fluorides, such as reproductive issues, neurological problems, and even cancer.
But if fluoride is all that bad, why do we still see it all around us? Why do experts still recommend it? We’re here to dive deep into the dangers of fluoride and answer, once and for all, if you should be worried about its effects on your teeth.
Fluoride is a mineral that can be found in natural resources, such as water, soil, plants, rocks, and air. But what a lot of people don’t know is that there are small levels of this mineral in our bones and teeth, which is why dentists recommend supplementing the calcium fluoride produced by our bodies with fluoride-rich products to further strengthen our tooth enamel and prevent cavities.
For years, fluoride has been used to improve dental health, infused in toothpaste, mouthwashes, dental flosses, and health supplements. This is because of its strong ability to remineralize the tooth enamel, fight tooth decay, and get rid of harmful bacteria.
This naturally occurring mineral can do wonders for your oral and dental health. Some more benefits include:
The main function of fluoride is to help strengthen the tooth enamel, which is constantly being attacked by oral bacteria. Bacteria that build up in our mouths produce an acid that weakens the tooth enamel and causes tooth decay.
Fluoride aids in the tooth’s remineralization process and helps retain hydroxyapatite in our tooth barrier, which is the main calcium that keeps our teeth strong. In effect, fluoride helps bind the enamel to teeth, reducing the risks of cavities and tooth decay.
The tooth enamel, being our first line of defense against tooth decay, plays a very important role in our overall dental health. With fluoride keeping the enamel intact, acid-producing bacteria cannot penetrate it as effectively and hence, is unable to cause harm to our teeth.
Fluoride is 100% natural, found in the food we eat and the natural resources we see around us. Our bodies also produce fluoride in the form of calcium to strengthen our teeth and bones. When this natural mineral is combined with our saliva, they work 24/7 and provide continuous protection for our teeth.
As with any other vitamin or treatment, getting too much fluoride can have serious health effects. Use and exposure to high levels of fluoride can lead to fluoride poisoning, which causes skin problems, neurological issues, reproductive issues, and cardiovascular risks.
However, the fluoride content in food, fluoridated water, toothpaste, and other dental products are not nearly enough to cause fluoride poisoning. In fact, even foods that are rich in fluoride can only provide 2% to 4% of the recommended daily fluoride intake. The fluoride in water, as well, is regulated to one part per one million.
Dental products containing fluoride have only small doses of the mineral, which makes them completely safe for daily use. At minimal levels, fluoride has a wide range of health benefits and is recommended by dental experts.
Fluoride is proven to be safe and effective for oral use. You can get the level of fluoride to maintain tip-top oral health by:
Fluoride that is found in dental products, food, and beverages is nothing to worry about and will not cause any health risks, even after prolonged use and consumption.