Dental Fluorosis: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatments

Dental Fluorosis: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatments

Dental fluorosis is a common cosmetic condition in which your teeth are discolored with tiny chalky white or, in severe cases, brown stains.

Symptoms:

Symptoms of dental fluorosis may vary from person to person, as in few patients, these appear as chalky white patches or yellow stains, whereas in others, it may seem like brown stains on the surface of the teeth.

Causes:

Unlike many other dental and gums diseases, fluorosis has nothing to do with brushing and flossing. The real factor behind this dental disorder is the ‘excessive intake of fluoride’ during the first eight years of life because here, at this stage, teeth are not fully mineralized.

This dental problem mainly occurs in rural areas where people used to drink water from shallow wells or hand pumps. Usually, in such areas, the water contains the fluoride content more than usual, which is 1ppm. Moreover, the below-average intake of calcium-containing foods also becomes a significant cause of fluorosis in children.

  • Excessive Use of Fluoride Toothpastes: In most of the children, fluorosis occurs due to excessive use of fluoride-containing toothpaste. The teeth whitening fluoride toothpaste’s ads on television and magazine entice people to use an excessive quantity of toothpaste while brushing.
  • Fluoride Medication: Some of the infants are given fluoride drops or tablets for many reasons, one of which is the strengthening of baby teeth. If given for a longer time or excessive quantity, the chances for your child to get dental fluorosis are greater.

Preventions

  • Monitor Your Child Tooth Brushing: Its parent’s responsibility to monitor their children’s brushing practices so that they may not put an extra amount of toothpaste on their toothbrushes. Do keep an eye on your child while he is brushing so that you may know either he is ingesting the toothpaste or spitting it out.
  • Balanced Drinking Water: To keep your teeth away from fluorosis, you should drink water than contains a below 0.5 ppm fluoride in it. Moreover, taking in calcium-containing supplements or foods can also prevent you from getting fluorosis.

Diagnosis

A dentist will recommend treatment after carefully observing the type and severity of your dental fluorosis. After asking about a child’s intake and other medical conditions, the dental professional will recommend treatment accordingly.

Treatment

  • Abrasion: If fluorosis is in a mild condition, then a dentist will ask you to undergo a treatment that is called “Abrasion” This dental procedure involves the scratching of the outer layer of the tooth enamel that contains stains. The treatment is not as useful because it can make your teeth surface highly porous.
  • Composite Bonding: During this treatment, the outer area of your stained enamel is made lightly rough, and then a composite resin is placed on it that matches the natural color of your teeth. This type of treatment comes under cosmetic dentistry.
  • Porcelain Veneers: This is another cosmetic dental procedure in which porcelain made veneers that form a ceramic shell, are placed over your teeth.

A dentist will first conduct a detail view of your dental problem through digital x-rays and then will recommend treatment accordingly.

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