Fluoride is Safe Pt. 2: Dental Mythbusting
If you’re struggling with frequent cavities, and you can’t seem to get the hang of preventing tooth decay (no matter how hard you try), one way to give yourself the edge you need is a fluoride treatment from your dentist at Dores Dental! We’re located conveniently in Longmeadow, MA, and we have patients from all over the area who have benefitted from the advanced dentistry techniques and technologies we offer, as well as our fun and caring atmosphere!
Keeping things fun is a big part of our mission here at Dores Dental, and if we can have fun while helping you make the best decisions for your oral health, all the better! In our last post, we talked about fluoride treatments, and how fluoride helps to strengthen your enamel and your teeth to prevent tooth decay. We want all our patients to have a solid understanding of the procedures we offer in our practice, and part of that is making sure that you have the “whole story” when it comes to the sometimes “iffy” information you find online, especially when it comes to alternative medicine.
The alternative medicine community has long demonized fluoride (in all its forms) for quite a while. Today, they can even point to dubious “studies” to support the idea that fluoride either does your teeth no good, or it does you a lot of harm, or both. Like many chemicals we use on a regular basis, if consumed in huge amounts, fluoride can be dangerous, but the idea that any adding any fluoride at all is dangerous and deadly is a complete fabrication. Want proof? We have it (we can’t say the same for the other guys).
Where Does The Fluoride Myth Begin?
The idea that fluoride is dangerous or even deadly is often pushed by pointing to “cutting edge scientific research”. The fact is, there is nothing cutting edge about the fluoride myth. It all started in Wisconsin in 1950. At the time, fluoridation of municipal water was a new idea, and like many new ideas, it had detractors; most of them assumed that the fluoride used to strengthen enamel and your teeth was the same used in insecticides of the day (it isn’t). These misconceptions evolved as only a few years later, conspiracy theorists began to assert that fluoride to enhance public health was part of a Communist conspiracy to weaken the minds of American children. At the time, paranoia about Communism was at its height, and fluoride became a target of fringe groups; it remains so to this day.
What Are The Rumors You Hear Today?
Fluoride is considered by the legitimate medical and dental communities to be one of the greatest advances in the history of public health. Today, anti-fluoride advocates spin a great many falsehoods about the effectiveness of fluoride and the dangers fluoride presents.
Rumor: Fluoride doesn’t actually protect your teeth.
One of the more recent examples of this rumor tries to make the case that fluoride only adds a thin additional layer of protection to your enamel, making it seem like the idea behind fluoride is to “beef up” the thickness of your enamel.
That isn’t how fluoride works. This is how fluoride works:
Your enamel, which is made of densely packed together mineral crystals, is in a constant natural cycle of losing and gaining back those minerals. This is referred to as demineralization and remineralization. Your enamel loses minerals due to the acids produced by oral bacteria as waste (demineralization), and your body naturally replaces them (remineralization). Demineralization is accelerated by not taking proper care of your teeth, and to a degree, your genetic disposition to developing cavities (some folks just get more cavities than others). Fluoride accelerates the remineralization process; it doesn’t add “extra” minerals. Fluoride only harmonizes the cycle so that your enamel doesn’t lose so much of its minerals that tooth decay (and cavities) can begin.
Rumor: Fluoride isn’t natural, but a harmful, manmade pollutant.
Fluoride is a naturally occurring element that is available from a wide range of sources (including manmade). Fluoride is present naturally in the environment, food, and water. Consuming fluoride in large quantities can be dangerous; however, fluoride has been found naturally in water at levels far exceeding what is considered safe for human consumption; the idea that fluoride is only toxic because it is manmade is just wrong.
Rumor: Fluoride Is Hazardous To Your Health
The anti-fluoride crowd claims that fluoride of any kind has serious detrimental effects to your health. They claim that fluoride can negatively impact:
- Your immune system
- Your ability to metabolize glucose (sugar)
- Your brain function and cognitive abilities (or simply that fluoride is the cause of mental illness, such as learning disorders)
They also claim that fluoride causes:
- Alzheimer’s Disease
- Kidney failure
This is just a small sample of the “adverse effects” attributed to fluoride, and none of them are true. These claims are often based on “studies” that at the very least have methodological issues (i.e. the study was not conducted properly, in accordance with accepted scientific protocol). The journals in which these studies are published are not peer-reviewed, and you can’t get them in a medical or dental science library. Often the studies use fluoride in quantities that are much higher than normal and many of these studies are based on poorly designed experiments on animals.
No legitimate scientific evidence exists that shows fluoride is harmful.
Having Trouble With Cavities?
Hopefully, we’ve helped to educate our patients on this “false-flag” issue. If you’re having trouble with cavities, the last thing you should be thinking about is avoiding fluoride!
At Dores Dental, we can provide you with a fluoride treatment. It is a relatively simple procedure that yields big benefits to those who are struggling with tooth decay and frequent cavities. Your dentist will apply a fluoride gel to your teeth; fluoride can help your teeth through topical application as well as ingestion (such as the fluoride that is added to your water supply).
A fluoride treatment from Dores Dental will result in a dramatic increase in the strength of your teeth and oral health, and your teeth will be able to resist decay and cavities to a much greater degree than ever before.
Don’t wait to make an appointment! The longer you wait, the more decay will take place; that means more cavities and more fillings. A simple fluoride treatment can help you avoid cavities and the procedures needed to repair them!
Dial 413-241-3995 or click here to use our handy online appointment form and book your appointment right now!