Dental fluorosis is caused when a child has taken in too much fluoride over a long period of time, usually before the age of 8 when their teeth are still forming under the gums. Children 8 years old and younger are at particular risk because their baby teeth are being replaced by still-developing permanent teeth.
In today’s blog from the pediatric dentistry team at Parkcrest Dental Group, our oral hygiene specialist will explain how fluorosis develops and what you can do about it.
Related Post: Promoting Your Child’s Self Image with Oral Hygiene
Signs & Symptoms
You may not think there’s anything wrong with your child’s teeth because fluorosis doesn’t present as decay or chipping. But you’ve noticed that their teeth have white specs or even a white lacy effect around the edges. This can also show as pits, surface irregularities, and yellow or dark brown stains. This could be fluorosis, a cosmetic issue of the teeth caused by too much fluoride before the age of 8.
While this issue isn’t physically harmful or dangerous to the teeth or mouth, it can cause psychological distress and enhanced self-consciousness and lower self-esteem.
Reduce the Occurrence of Fluorosis
The first thing you as a parent can do is to find out if your state adds fluoride to the drinking water. You can find it at My Water’s Fluoride. If your state adds fluoride, you may need to check other sources for it in the home.
You can check your family’s oral dental products for levels of fluoride. Many toothpastes and mouth rinses contain fluoride. Combine these with fluoride supplements and drinking water with fluoride, and you could put your child at risk for fluorosis.
In most cases, the fluorosis is so mild that it doesn’t need treatment.
In moderate to severe cases, which are rare, your dentist may recommend the following:
- MI Paste – a calcium phosphate that is used along with microabrasion to minimize the tooth’s discoloration
- Veneers are custom-made restorations that cover the front of the tooth to improve the appearance
- Bonding – a hard resin that coats the enamel
- Teeth whitening
Your dentist will be able to identify fluorosis and determine the best course of treatment for you or your child. If you suspect fluorosis, call your dentist today.
Related post: The How-To Guide for Treating White Spots on Teeth
Call the Pediatric Dentist at Parkcrest Dental Group
Does your child have white splotches on his or her teeth?. Contact Parkcrest Dental Group online or call (417) 887-1220 to make an appointment. Our doctors can give you some tips and treatment options.