Practical Application

Fluoride has been used for many years to help prevent dental decay. Today, fluoride can be administered in three different methods. The first involves the application of fluoride solution. This type of fluoride is painted on the teeth with a cotton tip applicator. The second method is the usage of a concentrated fluoride rinse. The third is the tray technique, which is used to apply fluoride gels. This method is generally known as the most effect method of fluoride treatment.  

Fluoride is not a substitute for toothpaste, but provides up to 38% more protection for both children and adults who are high at risk for dental decay. Some factors that put children at high risk include insufficient sources of dietary fluoride, high carbohydrate diets, salivary flow and poor oral hygiene. The younger the child is when fluoride is applied to their teeth, the better. It’s usually recommended for children to get fluoride treatment as soon as the front teeth erupt in the mouth.

Fluoride varnish is recommended especially for children. It offers several advantages over other professionally applied fluorides that will help children high at risk for dental carries. The varnish comes in child-friendly favors and is easily tolerated especially by infants and toddlers. It also provides a fast and easy way to apply fluoride to the teeth. It can be swabbed directly on the teeth in less than 3 minutes and sets within a minute of contact with saliva. It’s safe and provides less risk of a reaction because only a small amount is used and less is swallowed. Using fluoride varnish requires no usage of dental equipment and can be applied in any setting.

As mentioned before, fluoride is not a substitute for toothpaste. In order to reduce one’s risk of getting dental carries, regular check ups to the dentist and daily brushing and flossing must be done.

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