You will probably have heard, or read, repeatedly, that fluoride is one of the best ingredients to look out for in the toothpaste or mouthwash you use every day, since it replaces the minerals in tooth enamel, making it stronger and reducing the risk of infection related to tooth decay.
However, there is a risk of enamel suffering from over exposure to fluoride during the tooth development process, which can cause the appearance of an issue known as fluorosis.
What is dental fluorosis and what causes it?
In dentistry we consider fluorosis dental to be the process of alteration in enamel appearance caused by over exposure to fluoride during the period of dental growth and development.
The most typical symptom of this problem is the appearance of dull white spots on the surface of permanent teeth. In severe cases of fluorosis rough patches may also appear on the enamel and even dark, brown or yellow spots.
As experts in child dentistry in San Sebastian, at our surgery we sometimes treat children and adolescents who have no idea why these white spots have started to appear on their teeth.
These cases share a common factor of over exposure to fluoride during childhood due to using dental hygiene products for adults or to consuming some kind of parapharmacy product such as sweets containing fluoride without the supervision of a child dentist.
There is also a connection between people with fluorosis who have consumed water in the areas where the fluoride content is more than 1.5 ppm.
Treating dental fluorosis
All of the treatments applied to patients with dental fluorosis focus on achieving a harmonious smile.
Depending on the severity of the case, white, yellow or brown spots on tooth enamel can be corrected by means of a tooth whitening procedure or by fitting dental veneers. Often, if the spot is small, it is sufficient simply to remove a little of the surface from the stained area and replace it with a shallow filling in the same colour as the tooth.
Less severe cases can be treated by means of a professional tooth whitening procedure at our clinic. This will conceal spots by whitening the shade of your other teeth.
In the case of severe dental fluorosis, we will study potential treatment with dental veneers, concealing the spots by applying micro-veneers in resistant material which imitate the original shape and colour of your teeth.
The appearance of your teeth when you smile is essential. You talk, eat and smile confidently when you are happy with the way your teeth look. If you have any doubts about dental fluorosis or would like us to study your case, call us! We’ll be delighted to see you at our dental clinic in San Sebastian.