Prevention

Fluoride

Fluoride is a mineral that is naturally found in water in varying amounts.

Fluoride can greatly reduce tooth decay by making the enamel stronger. Fluoride also helps early enamel decay to repair.

The naturally occurring fluoride levels in the water supply for this area of Kent are about 0.13 ppm (parts per million). For optimum dental health it should be 1 ppm.

Fluoride in Toothpaste

From extensive evidence-based research, the Department of Health recommends that everyone should use a toothpaste with a fluoride content of 1350 to 1500ppm. You will find fluoride information on the packaging of your toothpaste, in the list of ingredients.

Brush twice a day, and spit out excess paste, do not rinse away with water afterwards. The fluoride then has time to soak into your teeth.

Studies show that if you are a ‘once a day’ brusher you will have twice as much decay as people who brush ‘twice a day’.  Brushing more than twice a day, although not harmful, appears to make little difference to levels of decay for most people.

Children and Toddlers under 6 years of age

From extensive evidence-based research the Department of Health recommends all children should use an adult toothpaste, containing at least 1350ppmF. from the moment teeth start to come through.  This should be a smear across the small-headed toothbrush for a 6 month old child, increasing to a small pea size amount for a 3 to 6 year old. Brushing should be supervised twice a day, with one of the brushings just before bedtime. Please keep toothpaste out of reach of young children.

Fluoride in the water

Recent legislation will permit the addition of fluoride to the water supply.  Although some people have concerns about the safety of fluoride, extensive research shows that it is very safe and will be very beneficial to dental health.

For further information please go to the BDHF (British Dental Health Foundation) website.