Fluoride Usage – Pros & Cons

April 5, 2021 by Salt Lake Dental
Fluoride Toothpaste

Fluoridation has been a heavily debated topic in recent times. The world of dentistry has been plagued with supporters of both sides of the debate. Some say that Fluoride is beneficial for oral hygiene while others raise ethical concerns related to fluoridation. Do you want to make up your mind once and for all? Let us take a look at this blog to find answers.

What Is Fluoride?

Before jumping into the merits and demerits of fluoride usage, we need to first understand what this element is. Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that is found extensively in soil, water, and certain food items. It is commonly found in toothpaste, mouth rinses, and other dental supplements. Water fluoridation is also a common phenomenon wherein fluoride is added to the water supply to tackle dental issues. 

Merits of Fluoride Usage

There are several benefits associated with fluoride usage. Dentists prefer this particular element for many reasons. Let’s take a look at them.

Reduction in demineralization of teeth: 

Fluoride has been known to strengthen tooth enamel and prevent tooth decay, ultimately eliminating chances of tooth loss. Weakened tooth enamel can hasten the onset of cavities and other severe tooth infections. It has also been known to reverse premature signs of decay. Using products containing fluorides can rebuild your teeth and can decrease the number of trips to your dentist for various services.

Improvement in Bone Density:

Some studies claim that consistent use of fluoride can lead to improvements in bone density. It has been shown to stimulate bone mineral concentration thereby boosting the overall condition of your teeth. 

Prohibiting birth of Oral Bacteria:

Fluoride has been known to decrease the ability of harmful bacteria to produce acid and destroy your teeth further. Fluoride doesn’t just stop with decreasing bacterial ability. It is antimicrobial in nature. This means that it has the potential to kill oral bacteria thereby protecting you from cavities and periodontal diseases

Demerits of Fluoride Usage

Excessive use of fluoride has been known to cause serious side effects in humans. Hence to make a well-informed decision it is necessary to understand both sides of the problem.

Dental Fluorosis

This disease is common amongst youngsters and is technically associated with the hypomineralization of enamel. White streaks appear on your teeth due to excessive consumption of fluoride. This, however, does not cause any serious bodily harm and is only a temporary exterior concern related to your appearance. Teeth discoloration is treated by dentists regularly and you should visit your dentist if you are suffering from Fluorosis.

Skeletal Fluorosis 

Continuous susceptibility to fluoride can lead to skeletal fluorosis which primarily affects your bones. However, a regular check on your fluoride consumption can prevent this disease easily

Development of Serious Health Problems

 Several studies claim that fluoridated water could lead to serious illnesses later on in life.  Regulation in fluoride intake can curb the problem and control it at its inception.

Fluoride usage has mostly proven to be a cost-effective method and has effectively reduced the occurrence of preventable tooth decomposition. Dentists primarily agree to the benefits of fluoride and suggest its use widely. Water fluoridation has enhanced dental care in backward regions and as long as it is regulated it is likely to be used for a long time in the future. If you still have concerns about fluoride consumption then we would recommend you to consult your dentist today and discuss your concerns to make a better choice.