Are You Affected By A Fluoride Deficiency?
Do you have a fluoride deficiency? Fluoride is a mineral that helps to strengthen the protective enamel surrounding your teeth. Premature breakdown of your enamel and a subsequent increase in cavities can indicate a fluoride deficiency. Aside from brushing with a fluoridated toothpaste, what are some of the ways you can ensure you have an adequate amount of fluoride?
The majority of Americans receive fluoride via their water supply, but some jurisdictions have chosen not to fluoridate their water, with 74 cities voting to remove fluoride from their drinking water. If you're unsure about whether your drinking water has been fluoridated, contact your local water authority.
Those with a non-fluoridated water supply might decide to take fluoride supplements, which are available in a range of different forms (such as drops and tablets). You should not take these supplements without consulting your dentist. Dosage must be precisely controlled so that you don't experience the flipside of your current problem and consume too much fluoride. This can lead to one of the forms of fluorosis, affecting your teeth, bones, and overall health.
Speaking to your dentist about your suspected fluoride deficiency is important. They can integrate a fluoride treatment into your regular dental checkups, which involves them applying a measured dose of fluoride-rich gel to your teeth. Your dentist can also prescribe a fluoride gel or rinse to use at home. This is a far better option than self-medicating with fluoride supplements, as a prescribed treatment regulates the dosage to ensure your body won't absorb an excessive amount of fluoride.
In addition to administering a fluoride treatment and prescribing you the means to continue treatment at home, your dentist can also make some dietary suggestions to ensure that you're receiving the most appropriate amount of fluoride. It's not a question of just consuming food and beverages that are high in fluoride, as many of them are also high in sugar, which counteracts the actual benefits of fluoride.
Even when you're making an effort to maintain your fluoride intake, it doesn't mean you're immune to cavities. This is especially true if you had a fluoride deficiency for a number of years. Your dentist might even suggest a glass ionomer filling for your cavity. This is a blend of acrylic and glass and can have fluoride built into it, which is then released onto the tooth. These are not appropriate for all cavities, as they have a shorter lifespan than other fillings and cannot withstand the same level of bite pressure.
Talk to a dentist if you suspect that you're affected by a fluoride deficiency. They'll be able to offer you a number of ways to deal with the issue.