For many years, it was believed that only children could benefit from the use of fluoride treatments. This is because the tooth strengthening benefits of fluoride were believed to only be effective during the years when the teeth were still developing. Due to this widespread belief, many adults now fail to even consider the possibility that they could benefit from fluoride treatments. However, the truth is, people of all ages can benefit from the use of these dental treatments, especially if they have one of several different risk factors for tooth decay. Here is more about these risk factors so that you can decide for yourself whether or not you could benefit from the use of dental fluoride treatments.
Receding gums can occur as a result of gum disease or be attributed to heredity. If you suffer from this dental problem, the further your gums pull away from the teeth, the more exposed your teeth with be to the bacteria that causes tooth decay. Receiving regular fluoride treatments can help you to strengthen your tooth enamel and minimize the risk of decay that results from your receding gums.
Lack of Fluoride in Your Drinking Water or Toothpaste
Most adults get the fluoride they need through their drinking water and by brushing with fluoride toothpaste. However, not all jurisdictions treat their water with fluoride. Furthermore, some individuals may choose to primarily drink bottled water or to use homemade toothpastes that do not contain fluoride.
If you are not getting the fluoride you need through your drinking water and toothpaste, you will need to supplement this fluoride with the use of dental treatments in order to maintain the strength of your tooth enamel.
Recent Radiation Therapy
If you have recently received radiation therapy in your head or neck region as part of the treatment of a serious disease, you should know that this therapy can seriously damage your salivary glands and ultimately lead to chronic dry mouth. When this happens, you will no longer be producing enough saliva to effectively neutralize the acid levels in your mouth and wash away food particles and bacteria. This can put you at a significantly higher risk of tooth decay.
While fluoride treatments will not provide a cure for the chronic dry mouth that results from radiation therapy, they can help to minimize the risk of tooth decay following this procedure. Fluoride toothpaste should also be used on a regular basis in order to provide additional protection. For more information, talk to a professional like Ellsworth & Day DDS.