June 19, 2018
Many dental professionals tout fluoride as a sort of hero because research has shown that this mineral plays a role in developing and strengthening teeth. However, there is a controversy around fluoride because there is evidence to suggest that, not only is it not necessary for dental health, but it poses a threat to overall health as well.
Your holistic dentist in Sunnyvale is here to examine this subject and help you make an informed decision about whether you should be using fluoride.
Is Fluoride Really Good for Teeth?
It was long believed that fluoride changes the main mineral in tooth enamel into a material that is more resistant to decay, thus creating a shield for teeth against cavities. However, this “shield” is only 6 nanometers thick (it would take about 10,000 of these layers to equal the width of a human hair). It is questionable whether such a thin layer really does anything to prevent tooth decay.
Moreover, consuming too much fluoride can actually have adverse effects on teeth. Overconsumption during childhood many lead to dental fluorosis, a condition that causes teeth to become discolored or develop surface irregularities. Most dental fluorosis is so mild that an untrained eye cannot spot it, but it is still a danger that parents need to be aware of.
Risks to Systemic Health
Did you know that the top reason behind poison control calls are related to children eating fluoridated toothpaste? Indeed, consuming fluoride is extremely dangerous for children, which is why even dentists who support the use of fluoride recommend that parents closely supervise their young ones when they’re brushing their teeth.
Of course, children aren’t the only ones who are vulnerable to the dangers of fluoride. Anyone who consumes too much of this mineral may experience adverse effects.
- Fluoride may lead to skeletal fluorosis, which results in weakened bones.
- Fluoride causes calcification of cartilage and may lead to arthritis.
- The thyroid can absorb fluoride, resulting in decreased thyroid function.
- Research suggests that fluoride may impair neural development and negatively affect cognitive functioning.
Maintaining a Healthy Mouth Without Fluoride
Rest assured that it is possible for adults and children alike to enjoy optimal oral health without the use of this mineral. You can do so by:
- Visiting your holistic dentist regularly. Your dentist is always happy to give you personalized advice on which products to use to promote oral health.
- Sticking to a good oral hygiene routine. This routine should include the use of a fluoride-free toothpaste that your dentist recommends.
- Consuming a healthy diet. Foods that are rich in calcium and other vitamins and minerals are good for your entire body, including your teeth.
Fluoride is not the miracle mineral that many people view it as. Please research it thoroughly and seek professional advice to determine whether you should be using it as part of your dental care routine.
About the Dentist
Dr. William Langston is your holistic dentist serving Dallas. He is interested, not just in his patients’ health and gums, but also in their overall well-being. For expert guidance on how to care for your smile, please contact our office at 972-270-6533.
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