Is Fluoride Safe for Toddlers?

fluoride for toddlersA lot of concerned parents wonder whether fluoride is safe for toddlers. This is especially the case considering recent news that fluoride exposure causes long-term health problems. Do children at such a young age need fluoride when they haven’t even learned how to brush yet?

The Truth About Fluoride Safety and Toddlers

Fluoride is available naturally in water. The compound strengthens teeth enamel and prevents decay. It also makes the tooth more resistant to acid erosion. This is why our oral surgeons recommend it.

The American Dental Association recommends that parents brush their children’s teeth starting from one-year of age. The ADA also said parents can use a “smear” of fluoride toothpaste as soon as their child’s teeth begin to show. Most parents don’t do this, though; instead they give in to their uncooperative child.

The Research

The ADA’s recommendation arose as a result of recent findings by the Center for Disease Control. Research showed an increase of cavities among preschoolers who aren’t exposed to fluoride. In some of the more severe cases, children had cavities in more than half their baby teeth.

While fluoride is good for kids and adults alike, too much can also lead to fluorosis. This condition causes tooth discoloration. Studies also show a slight correlation between fluoride and ADHD in children.

How Much Fluoride Is Too Much?

Various factors come into play. Does water from your faucet contain fluoride? You may have to contact your city or local water company to find out. Also, does your child regularly consume sugary snacks? If so, he/she may require more fluoride. Ultimately, your family dentist will determine the ideal intake.

We Do Pediatric Checkups

If your child is at least 12-months of age, then we recommend they receive regular checkups. Our endodontists at Mukilteo Dental Arts have years of experience treating young tykes. Rest assured that in the right amount, fluoride is safe for toddlers.

Dental Checkups for Toddlers

General family dentistry for Mukilteo, Everett, Lynnwood, Edmonds & Mill Creek