There are many naturally occurring minerals that help protect the human body and keep it in optimum health. Iron helps deliver oxygen to your blood, while calcium strengthens your bones, preventing breaks. Fluoride is another mineral that protects the body, specifically your teeth.
Fluoride is found in rocks and soil and is instrumental in improving the health of teeth by making them more resistant to breakdown from acids created from bacteria and sugar in the mouth. When acid attacks the enamel of your teeth, it results in demineralization. Demineralization depletes your teeth of vital minerals. Fluoride is used in toothpaste to help with the re-mineralization process, which replenishes the minerals in your teeth to fight harmful acids.
There are several different ways for a person to get fluoride in their system. Fluoride is found in food and fluoridated water. Many water supplies in the United States add controlled amounts of fluoride to the water system. However, if you are drinking bottled water, you may be missing out on getting fluoride into your system through water. Mouth rinses also contain small amounts of fluoride.
Dentists can apply fluoride to teeth by using gel or foam. This is generally done when you go to the dentist for a teeth cleaning. Dentists will fill a mouth guard with the gel or foam, and then the patient will sit for a few minutes while the fluoride is applied to their teeth. For those whose teeth have trouble retaining fluoride, dentists and family doctors can also prescribe fluoride supplements.
Even though there are many ways to get fluoride in your system, the best way is to directly applying fluoride-containing toothpaste. Using toothpaste with fluoride helps ensure that your teeth are regularly coming into contact with fluoride. When picking toothpaste to use, it’s essential that you choose one that contains fluoride and also has the American Dental Association stamp of approval.