Demystifying the Common Myths Surrounding Fluoride and Dental Health
The conversation about the importance of proper dental health as early as possible has been going on for a while. Dentists have many massive gains in enlightening the people about the role that diet, and especially getting the right vitamins and minerals, plays in getting perfectly healthy and durable teeth. One of the minerals that have been a source of endless debate and speculation in dental health is fluoride. Here are some of the myths that surround this mineral and the truth about its role in dental hygiene.
Myth: Fluoride does not occur naturally
Contrary to what most people believe, fluoride occurs naturally in the water treated for domestic consumption. The only problem is that the levels of fluoride in the natural water are not high enough to offer adequate tooth protection. It is why county governments and municipals come up with programs to add fluoride to the tap water which people consume in homes. Fluoride is not a form of medication; it is just a supplement added to water to strengthen the teeth. Think of the addition of Fluoride in the water like how iodine is added to salt, or folic acid to cereals-all supplements to benefit the body.
Myth: Fluoridated water does not work
Fluoridation was introduced decades ago when authorities discovered that places whose water had naturally high fluoride levels had fewer cases of tooth decay. Further research confirmed the role played by the mineral in building healthy teeth. While fluoride could be added to water in the homes, local governments find it easier to add the mineral from a central point because this is a cheap way to achieve better dental health for everyone.
Myth: Fluoridated water causes cancer
Cancer scare is one of the biggest myths that have been circulating about the use of fluoride supplements. Research that has been carried out by NHMRC Australia shows that when fluoride is added to water in the ratio of 0.6-1.1 units to a million units of water, it does not lead to cancer, cognitive problems, downs syndrome or any other problems that fluoride has been alleged to cause. However, the one effect that dentists confirm from the use of water with excessively high levels of fluoride is fluorosis, where the teeth get yellow stains.
Before fluoride is added to water by the municipal authorities, they test the naturally occurring content. This reduces the possibility of excessive levels of the mineral getting added to the water. A daily dose of fluoride is essential for strong and healthy teeth.
To learn more about fluoride contact local dental services.