As a child’s dentist, Dr. Patterson and the team here at Epic Dentistry for Kids focus on managing and treating your kid’s dental development. We have tailored every aspect of our dental office and treatment to be as inviting as possible for younger patients and their particular needs.
On the subject of preventing dental health complications, we like to help children with preventative treatments such as professional fluoride applications. Still, we also wanted to prepare this article to help parents understand how fluoride can be a part of their child’s daily life.
When you come to our dental office in Aurora, your kid can get a high-concentration application of fluoride to strengthen their teeth. Fluoride is a mineral that helps maintain the tooth’s Enamel as strong and resilient as possible.
The good news is that you don’t have to wait until your next visit to strengthen your kid’s teeth; the bad news is that there is such a thing as too much fluoride. Read this article to learn more about naturally occurring fluoride and how much fluoride is enough.
Where To Get Your Fluoride
Let’s talk about how your child can get fluoride outside of the dental office. There are many cities here in the US that add Fluoride to the public water supply; however, we do not have this additional mineral in our water supply here in Aurora. Fortunately, there are many other sources of fluoride you can consider for your child’s diet.
Remember that you might find some unhealthy soft drinks in the market that include fluoride. Excessively sweet beverages will undo the benefits you could get from fluoride, so try minimizing your intake of sodas. You should also keep an eye out for the nutritional chart on bottled water.
A Child’s Dentist List of Foods With Fluoride
Your child can receive fluoride from some of the following foods and drinks:
- Black Tea. Some commercial brands of tea will include fluoride in their nutritional information, but for the most part, it will depend on the water used to brew your favorite type of black tea.
- Grapes. Nature’s candies. Grapes are an excellent source of fluoride, but they also have high levels of fructose. Be careful not to overindulge in this. Your child might prefer grape juice, or you might want them to try raisins. Just be careful because dehydrated food can be too sugary, and it can get stuck between your child’s teeth.
- Shrimp. Have you tried adding some seafood to your kid’s diet? If they don’t have any allergies, you could try adding shrimp to your pasta, rice, or tacos. Give it a try; your kid might discover their new favorite food. Just keep in mind to properly devein shrimp when you cook it.
- Spinach. We know feeding greens to a child can be challenging, but using spinach in an omelet or salad might be just what your kid needs.
- Boiled Potatoes. A staple in American cuisine. If your kid eats beef, why not consider using a boiled potato as a side? Potatoes are incredible, and if you want to keep as much of its nutrients and minerals, you could boil them next time they’re on your grocery list.
- Cooked White Rice. One of Asia’s best gifts to the world. Rice can go with almost anything, so next time you need a side for your dish, why not try to make some rice? It’s not that difficult, and you can find plenty of videos online showing you how to do it.
The list goes on. If you want to, you could follow this link to find a list of 196 foods considered to be high in Fluoride with data from the USDA Food Data Central.
How Much Is Too Much?
For young babies and kids between 7 and 12 months, the adequate intake of fluoride is 0.5 mg. Kids aged 4 through 8 should take around 1.0 mg per day, and preteens aged 9 to 13 should take 2 mg per day.
The adequate intake level for fluoride is usually calculated based on a person’s body weight. You can read an extensive investigation on the matter right here, but be warned: it’s a complicated read.
The same article discussed safety limits to an individual’s fluoride intake. Calculating this can be challenging for most households. Even if we list those advised limits here, we want to remind our readers that getting to those levels is not as common as you might fear.
For young babies and kids between 7 and 12 months, the adequate intake of fluoride is 0.9 mg. Kids aged 4 through 8 should take around 2.2 mg per day, and for kids, teens, and adults over 9 years old, the limit is 10 mg per day.
What Happens if I Get Too Much Fluoride?
Younger kids receiving too much fluoride while their teeth are still developing are at risk of developing Enamel Fluorosis. Spots or pits characterize this dental condition in a child’s teeth. Severe cases may result in large brown, black, or grey spots over the teeth.
It would help if you avoided fluoride toothpaste before the age of 2. And because it is difficult to estimate your child’s fluoride intake, you should only give them fluoride supplements under professional directions and supervision.
We continue to review the safe levels of fluoride use in dental treatment, so you should always consult with a pediatric dentist before making decisions on your own.
Getting the Necessary Help From a Child’s Dentist
Come to our dental office for more help in caring for your baby’s teeth. We are thrilled to help our patients achieve the healthiest versions possible of their smiles. Give us a call or set your next appointment online, and come with all the questions you have.
See you soon!