From the moment we started learning about how to take care of our teeth, we’ve heard about the importance of fluoride in our diets. We have fluoride in our toothpaste, fluoride in tablet form, and fluoride treatments during our earliest dental visits. While getting enough fluoride is essential for the health of our teeth, there are consequences when we receive it in excessive amounts. While getting too much fluoride isn’t a problem that happens often, it has consequences for the appearance of our teeth.
The Importance Of Fluoride, and How You May Get Too Much
Fluoride plays a critical role in protecting the health of our teeth. It reinforces the strength of our enamel and helps it recover from damage from day-to-day wear and tear. Children, in particular, benefit from receiving sufficient amounts of fluoride, but even adult dental health requires sufficient quantities. All this aside, it’s possible to get too much fluoride, which can create dental health problems that are aesthetic and functional. So how would you get too much fluoride? A combination of the following sources can create problems:
- Fluoridation of public water
- Fluoride concentrations in natural freshwater
- Toothpaste and Mouthrinse that has fluoride
- Overuse of fluoride supplements
- Dietary options
It’s important to note that no single instance of the above will cause an issue. They are all sources that most of us encounter on a day-to-day basis. The issues begin when a combination of these factors results in our receiving an overabundance of fluoride. When this occurs, you may start to see problems forming on your teeth or those of your children. Common signs of over fluoridation are:
- White streaking in the teeth, starting below the gumline
- Dark brown spots and pitted enamel
When these dark spots form as a result of too much fluoride, it is known as brown spot fluorosis. This condition results in the pitted enamel and dark brown spots in the enamel mentioned above. The source of this condition isn’t just receiving too much fluoride but specifically doing so during our developmental years. This is why it’s essential that you speak to your dentist and consult with them regularly regarding the level of fluoride your family needs. Everything from the place you live to what you eat can have an impact, so it’s important that the experts are involved in the choice to add fluoride.
What Can Be Done To Treat Brown Spot Fluorosis
Brown spot fluorosis can be treated using a number of methods, including those as simple as teeth whitening. However, due to the deep and intrinsic nature of the condition, it may require more intensive approaches. One common approach is veneers, which serve to cover the imperfections in the teeth and create a beautiful, uniform, white smile. The best way to get started with treating this condition is to reach out to your dentist for a consultation. By calling and scheduling one today, you’ll be taking the first vital step to eliminating the signs of brown spot fluorosis. Don’t let fluorosis be the reason you hide your smile; get help today!