Fluoride: The Good, The Bad, and What to Do About It

a tooth brush and a paste in white backgroundFluoride is used in most dental products like mouthwash, lozenges, and varnish. It’s most commonly known as the important ingredient in toothpaste. It can prevent tooth decay and can strengthen the teeth.

Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that can be found in most bodies of water and is known to be the number one cavity fighter for both kids and adults. But it’s had its share of negative feedback over the years regarding its effect on human health and many people are starting to get confused about it.

The people behind the campaigns Healthier Colorado and Water Fluoridation for Healthy Communities share some facts to help you learn more about fluoride.

The Good

Fluoride coats the teeth and protects them from acids that strip away the minerals. It rebuilds and remineralizes weak tooth enamel and protects it from further damage. As children start to grow their baby teeth, fluoride can help strengthen them and aid in the healthy growth of their permanent teeth. A continuous, minimal supply of fluoride to your body can help with the overall health of a person’s teeth, primary or permanent.

The Bad

Excess amounts of fluoride in the body can cause many health risks. Dental fluorosis can cause a discoloration of the teeth. It doesn’t affect the health of the tooth but may show white streaks that can be a cosmetic problem. It can also damage the thyroid, bones, and joints, affecting how they function and sometimes causing pain.

No one can tell anyone what to believe. You can be presented by facts and you can decide whether to believe it or not. But the simple conclusion anyone can make from what was presented here is that excess fluoride can harm the body just like anything else in life. In moderation, fluoride can reduce the risks of dental problems.