It’s natural for children to undergo fluoride treatments when visiting the dentist’s office, but do adults need fluoride treatment as well? When considering this preventive solution, it may be necessary if you lack enough protection against decay. Read on to discover how you can tell if you need a bit of extra help to keep your teeth safeguarded against the effects of harmful bacteria.
The Benefits of Fluoride on Adult Teeth
As an adult, you might assume additional fluoride is not essential for adequate protection of your teeth, especially since you are capable of brushing and flossing correctly. However, the reality is that many dentists still recommend this application.
Individuals who are at a moderate to high risk for cavities may not receive enough fluoride from other sources, such as toothpaste, fruits, vegetables, and tap water. As a person gets older, medications and other aging effects can cause dry mouth and gum recession. Also, those with customized restorations may be at an increased risk for dental decay.
By allowing your dentist to apply fluoride during your regular checkups and cleaning appointments, you can take a proactive approach to keep your teeth healthy and strong as you grow older.
Ways to Tell Additional Fluoride Treatment is Needed
Knowing whether you need additional fluoride is often determined by your dentist; however, there are a few ways you can tell before it’s time for your appointment. Three of the most obvious ways you can tell is by asking these questions:
- Do I experience dry mouth? If you take various medications, particularly those associated with diabetes or Sjogren’s syndrome, there’s a good chance you will experience dry mouth. Antihistamines and those required to treat high blood pressure and anxiety can also lead to less saliva production. Because teeth cannot be remineralized by the saliva, bacteria can form and break down tooth enamel.
- Do my teeth appear longer than before? Gum recession is common if you’ve experienced periodontal disease. When bacteria attack teeth and soft oral tissues, it can lead to inflammation of the gums as well as cavities within the teeth. When more of the tooth structure becomes exposed, it can cause increased vulnerability to decay.
- Do I have any restorations? If you’ve received a filling, crown, or bridge recently, the tooth that lies underneath the restoration is still susceptible to cavity formations. Even with proper oral hygiene habits performed at home, bacteria can still permeate underneath the restoration. Applying fluoride can slow down the spread of decay while also remineralizing the tooth.
When meeting with your dentist to discuss your candidacy for fluoride treatment, remember its benefits to your teeth and with the right amount, you can expect to enjoy your natural smile for longer.
About the Practice
The dental team at Indy Dental Group wants you to feel confident about your upcoming visit. We also want you to have the tools and information needed to keep your smile looking its best year-round. Of course, aesthetics are not everything, so many of the tips you’ll receive from us will be focused more on the health side of your smile. If you want to take back control of your oral health once and for all, contact us at (317) 846-6125 and let us help you.