What is Fluoride?
Fluoride is a mineral which occurs naturally in water and foods. It helps build strong healthy teeth so they are better resistant to plaque causing cavities. Fluoride has meant a major decrease in the occurrence of tooth decay. Topical fluoride may also help repair a tooth where decay has begun.
It is important that a person's fluoride intake is adequate, in order to help prevent tooth decay. This is why many councils throughout Australia add fluoride to the community's water supply. Dentists may recommend that people who live outside these areas take additional fluoride supplements - consult your dentist if you have any concerns.
In addition to dietary fluoride, topical fluoride in toothpaste, mouthwash and gel is also very effective in protecting teeth. It may be able to stop or in some cases reverse the damage caused by decay.
Fluoride gels contain a high concentration of fluoride and can provide extra protection against decay. Fluoride application may be recommended by the treating dentist and generally applied after cleaning.