Many parents are looking for the answer to the question when it comes to their children’s dental health: “Is fluoride harmful to children?”
The World Health Organization and various dental associations around the world; They explained with scientific reports that fluoride applications with various methods, including fluoridation of drinking water, are effective in reducing dental caries, which is a social health problem.
For years, the American Dental Association has advised parents not to use fluoride toothpaste for their children until they are 2 years old. Since 2014, they have stated that fluoride toothpaste in the form of a swab can be used in children after their teeth erupt. So, with even the American Dental Association going to change their minds, is fluoride really harmful to children?
First of all, it is useful to remember a few basic information about fluoride:
Fluoride has a preventive and even regressive effect for the first period of tooth decay. It strengthens the tooth structure, so the teeth become more resistant to acid attacks.
New research on fluoride
The increasing number of caries in preschool children in America has also changed the perspective on fluoride. In some cases, the problem was so great that children had to be put to sleep with general anesthesia and half or more of their primary teeth had to be filled.
Adding fluoride toothpaste earlier to the process was seen as a useful solution as a way to reduce these cavities in children. The American Dental Association recommends that children take a little water and spit it out after brushing their teeth to prevent any fluoride poisoning (fluorosis). What is called fluoride poisoning means that the enamel surface of the tooth changes color by exposure to too much fluoride. It is actually best to establish this habit from a young age, as it is easier to practice with a young child.
In some cases, exposure to fluoride can be associated with ADHD and other neurological conditions when large amounts are ingested. Swallowing toothpaste a few times may not be a problem, but if it becomes a habit, it can lead to more serious problems.
What is best for your child?
In this case, is fluoride harmful to children? You may still be wondering. In young children, caries pain can be confused with the pain of newly erupted teeth from time to time, so do not neglect to see the dentist in case of any pain.
The key to using fluoride is to strike a balance between your child’s tooth decay and other risk factors that can result from using too much.
When deciding when to use fluoride toothpaste, it’s important to consider how much fluoride your child has gotten so far. For example, does it get fluoride from drinking water?
Another important point is the diet of your child. Does he like to consume sugary foods? If he’s good with sugary foods, he’ll need some fluoride to keep his teeth from decaying.
If you are still not sure what to do, you can consult your dentist at your next appointment. The dentist will help you make the right decision about fluoride use after examining your child’s teeth and asking you questions about environmental conditions.