Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral, which is water soluble. It reduces tooth decay and can decrease sensitivity to common triggers such as hot or cold food or sugar. Fluoride has several roles in tooth health:
As plaque builds up on teeth, it allows bacteria to breed – these bacteria in turn attach the teeth and cause decay. Fluoride strengthens the tooth enamel to resist these attacks so that teeth can both fight off the decay and actually repair their own enamel so that they ‘heal’ bacterial damage that could otherwise have led to permanent decay.
Fluoride also reduces the ability of bacteria to proliferate, as they find a fluoride environment difficult in which to multiply. This means that a well-fluoridated mouth is less likely to be a breeding ground for potentially harmful bacteria.
Fluoridation is often best accomplished early in life. Children who ingest sufficient fluoride have stronger teeth with shallower grooves which are less prone to attack by the bacteria in plaque. However, using a fluoride tray allows adults to enjoy the benefits of fluoridation and improve their dental health.
What are Fluoride Trays?
A fluoride tray is a personalised device that allows each individual to apply fluoride gel to their teeth, reducing the risk of decay and improving tooth sensitivity.
Preventative care is the best route to take – caring for your teeth is a cost effective way to ensure you have great dental health and is much cheaper and less time-consuming as well as saving the pain and stress of more invasive dental treatment like fillings. Don’t we all want to avoid dental problems? Fluoride trays are a simple route to better teeth and fewer fillings.
How to use Fluoride Trays
Every evening, after your usual bedtime routine of brushing your teeth with an appropriate toothbrush and paste, and flossing the space between your teeth. It’s vital to remove any food debris and plaque that could prevent the fluoride gel reaching the tooth surfaces. The best way to avoid tooth decay is to ensure the fluoride gel makes contact with all parts of the tooth.
The system for using a fluoride tray is very simple:
>Place a thin layer of fluoride gel in both the upper and lower fluoride tray
>Insert the trays in the mouth and relax for five minutes while the fluoride does its work
>After five minutes, remove and rinse the trays and spit out any residual fluoride. It’s important not to eat or drink or rinse your mouth, for at least thirty minutes after you’ve used the fluoride trays, to get the maximum benefit from this process.
>Clean the trays with a toothbrush and toothpaste.
Long term care
In some areas, fluoride trays can develop a build-up of hard water deposits. These can easily be removed by soaking overnight in white vinegar before brushing them in the morning with a toothbrush. Do not boil the trays or subject them to high temperatures as this can damage them.
Benefits of Fluoride Trays
Our London based dentists are here to help you understand if using fluoride trays would benefit your teeth. Why not make an appointment for a check-up in our Putney dental studio, so that we can give you the best possible advice for your future dental health?