If you were to ask random people walking down the street if they are concerned about the level of fluoride in their water or toothpaste, you would receive varying responses.  However, just about every response would be enthusiastic.  People have strong opinions about the topic of fluoride.  Unfortunately, many of these opinions are not backed by legitimate evidence.


Fluoride is found in the mineral Fluorine, which naturally occurs in water and the planet’s surface.  It exists in gas, liquid and solid form yet it is completely colorless.  Apply fluoride in small doses to the teeth and they will prove that much stronger.  Those who consume tap water with fluoride and use fluoridated toothpaste tend to have minimal tooth decay.  This is precisely why most people are perfectly fine with consuming fluoridated tap water.  In fact, dentists even offer fluoride treatments during routine oral health checkups.  This flavored foam is applied to the teeth with the use of specialized dental trays.


Fluoride keeps the teeth in excellent shape in a couple different ways.  The first way is through the strengthening of the tooth’s structure.  This strengthening is especially important for young kids.  Those younger than the age of seven are still in the developmental stage for the all-important tooth enamel.  It is imperative the proper amount of fluoride is provided during these years.  Otherwise, the structure of the enamel won’t be strong enough to withstand acids from starchy and sugary foods.  Fluoride really does set the foundation for excellent oral health into the teen and adult years.

Several studies have proven fluoride plays an important role in the development of a youngster’s teeth.  Children who consume the proper amount of fluoride have shallower grooves in their teeth.  These grooves are referred to as fissures.  Those who did not consume fluoride had deeper fissures in their teeth than their fluoride-consuming peers.  Shallow fissures are ideal as they are not as prone to food particles or other nasty bacteria settling in the pits and crevices.  Such food particles will eventually lead to the formation of cavities.


As plaque accumulates on teeth, its harmful bacteria make direct contact with tooth enamel.  Such bacteria gradually eat away at tooth enamel, weakening it by sucking out its minerals.  This process is referred to as demineralization.  The mouth naturally corrects weak enamel by way of remineralization yet this all-natural process proves ineffective if teeth are not adequately cleaned or if the individual in question consumes an abundance of sugar.

Fluoride catalyzes the remineralization process, ensuring the enamel that is replaced during this process ends up being robust and less prone to a breakdown.  Furthermore, fluoride combats the harmful acid generated by plaque that is essential to ward off tooth decay.  This is accomplished with the blocking of the most damaging enzymes within plaque.  In fact, fluoride stops these enzymes from generating that nasty acid that gradually wears away the tooth enamel.

Call us at (850) 262-9488 for more information from Miramar Beach Dental & Orthodontics or to schedule an appointment in our dentist office in Miramar Beach.