Fluoride
 

Applying a Full Mouth Fluoride Treatment?


(i) It is best to brush your teeth first, or have them cleaned by your dentist.

(ii) The dentist will select a suitably sized foam tray and place the fluoride gel inside.

(iii) They will get you to open nice and wide to pop the tray in, and get you to gently close down on the tray coating your teeth in fluoride.

(iv) The tray will be left in place for 1-2 minutes. The nurse may provide suction or give you a cup or some tissues to dribble in to. You should try not to swallow and just let the fluoride and saliva dribble out.

(v) You should not have anything to eat or drink for half an hour afterwards to allow the maximum amount of fluoride to be absorbed into the enamel of your teeth.

(vi) They come in different flavours and sometimes foams instead of gels- bubblegum, strawberry, orange and mint to name a few- all of which we have tried. Some are a bit more pleasant than others- I don’t think you can go far wrong with good old mint personally.

Applying a Fluoride Varnish

The procedure for applying a varnish is very simple and only takes 2 minutes.

(i) It is best to brush your teeth first, or have them cleaned by your dentist.

(ii) The dentist isolates the tooth or teeth in question from saliva using cotton wool, a mini salivary ejector (sucker) or dry pads. This keeps it really nice and dry, to prevent saliva from diluting the fluoride.

(iii) The fluoride varnish or gel is then applied via a small brush, cotton pellet held in tweezers or a cotton bud.

(iv) If it is a gel it should be left for up to four minutes; If it is varnish- it should be left for 1-2 minutes.

(v) Excess fluoride should be wiped off and then you should spit out as much as you can to stop you from swallowing the excess.

(vi) You should not have anything to eat or drink for half an hour to allow the maximum amount of fluoride to be absorbed into the enamel of your your teeth.

In a nutshell: General PTR- points to remember

  • Spit out toothpaste, don’t rinse
  • If fluoride in water is low- supplements are useful until the child starts using fluoride toothpaste
  • If fluoride in water is over 0.7ppm- no additional systemic fluoride is needed
  • Children should only use children's toothpaste (low fluoride) up to the age of six
  • High caries rate children and adults benefit greatly from extra fluoride- the advantages outweigh the small risk of mottling
  • Water fluoridation is a good thing
  • Newly erupting teeth benefit the most from fluoride.