Everything You Need To Know About Fluoride

You’ve probably heard someone talk about fluoride before and the benefits it has for your teeth. But what actually is fluoride and how does it help our teeth? If you have any questions like this, keep reading, as we break down in this week’s blog everything you need to know about fluoride.  

What is fluoride? 

Fluoride is a chemical ion of the element fluorine, however, fluoride has an extra electron which gives it a negative charge. It is the 13th most abundant element on the earth’s crust and is found naturally in soil, water, foods, and minerals. When used correctly and at a safe level, fluoride can help decrease tooth decay.   

Why is fluoride added to drinking water? 

Following a discovery in the early 1990s which showed a direct link between people in areas with naturally fluoridated water and lower amounts of cavities, many places around the world started adding fluoride to their city’s drinking water.  

Melbourne Water adds less than one milligram of fluoride a litre to the water supply to help prevent tooth decay. This helps prevent tooth decay in a safe and controlled manner.  

How does fluoride help my teeth?  

There are three ways in which fluoride can help your teeth: 

1) Fluoride restores your teeth through remineralisation 

The first way that fluoride helps your teeth is by restoring them through remineralisation. This is the process in which a tooth restores itself in the early stages of tooth decay. Fluoride helps by sticking to the surface of the tooth and attracting other minerals to the problem area, such as calcium. 

2) Fluoride interferes with cavity-causing bacteria 

The second way in which fluoride helps promote good dental hygiene is slowing down the rate at which bacteria can metabolise sugars, resulting in less acid production.  

3) Fluoride helps to make a tooth more resistant to decay 

The final way that fluoride helps your teeth is by making them more resistant to decay. When fluoride is present during remineralisation, it creates the mineral fluorapatite, which restores the teeth.  

At Eden Rise Dental, we offer a range of treatments to maintain optimal dental hygiene. To book an appointment, please do not hesitate to call us on (03) 9702 6111