Dental Procedure Pain: Get the Facts

3 Benefits Of Fluoride Toothpaste To Clean Your Teeth

Some people are reconsidering the use of fluoride toothpaste for cleaning their teeth. If you have been concerned about the use and effectiveness of fluoride for tooth health, you are not alone. However, the dangers of fluoride ingestion are associated with overconsumption of the chemical. Relatively low doses of fluoride are used in used in toothpaste, and the paste is not designed to be swallowed. When it comes to fluoride in toothpaste, the benefits may outweigh the risks. Here are three benefits of fluoride in toothpaste:

1. Fluoride helps stop the demineralization of teeth. 

The greatest culprit in tooth decay is acid. It demineralizes your teeth by displacing calcium and phosphate, which are your teeth's building blocks. The composition of tooth enamel is 96 percent mineral, and the primary mineral of original tooth material is calcium hydroxyapatite.

When calcium hydroxyapatite is exposed to acid, calcium and phosphate are dissolved. However, if fluoride is present on the teeth, it attracts the phosphate and calcium molecules back to the tooth enamel. In addition, it binds with them to form a new mineral compound that is even harder and stronger than the original tooth material.

2. Fluoride has antibacterial properties.

A buildup of acid in the mouth can come from oral bacteria. As you eat, you feed more than your body; you feed the bacteria in your mouth. Once the bacteria consume carbohydrates from your food, they release acid into your mouth. However, fluoride can protect against acid damage by reducing the amount of acid that is produced by bacteria. Fluoride makes bacteria less tolerant of acid, and the lowered tolerance inhibits bacteria from feeding and releasing acid as a digestive byproduct.

3. Fluoride helps fight cavities as you sleep. 

It is important that you don't neglect to brush with a fluoride toothpaste before bedtime. At night, saliva production wanes as you sleep. Saliva helps prevent tooth decay by washing away food debris, bacteria and plaque that can damage tooth enamel. In addition, saliva can dilute the acid in your mouth. However, the decrease in the amount of saliva in your mouth at night can cause damaging substances in your mouth to be more concentrated. Fluoride can offer added defense against nightly decay by hardening your enamel and lessening acid production. 

Your teeth are exposed to the benefits of fluoride each time you brush with fluoridated toothpaste. If your toothpaste does not contain fluoride or you are concerned about the effectiveness of your current paste, consult with a dentist like Carolina Forest Family Dentistry. He or she can recommend a good fluoride toothpaste to clean your teeth.