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Fluoride Treatment side Effects

Fluoride is a mineral that is commonly added to public drinking water and oral health care products. Fluoride is used to strengthen tooth enamel and helps prevent tooth decay. In some cases, fluoride can be taken orally to help prevent bone loss. Who is also a frequent treatment after a professional dental cleaning.

How does fluoride work to protect teeth?

Fluoride can be applied directly to the teeth or ingested orally. Oral hygiene products such as mouthwash, toothpaste, or fluoride rinses help protect teeth from decay and can promote new bone development.

Are there any side effects to fluoride use?

The level of fluoride that is added to public drinking water is safe for most people as is the amount of fluoride found in oral care products. Your dentist and other healthcare professionals will make sure that you are not ingesting more than the proper amount of fluoride. Fluoride administered in higher doses can be unsafe and lead to weakness in muscle structure and even problems with the nervous system. This is especially true for patients who are pregnant. Doses for an expecting patients should not exceed 10 mg per day.

Uses and Effectiveness

Fluoride products and supplements can be used to:

  • prevent tooth decay when added to drinking water or oral care products and used regularly
  • treat bone loss when taken orally as recommended by a healthcare provider; fluoride can increase the density of bone mineral

Daily Dose Recommendation


  • Safe levels of fluoride are added to public water supplies in a concentration level of .07 to 1.2 parts per million to prevent dental cavities. If you are concerned that your child is not receiving enough fluoride through drinking water, ask your dentist if you should incorporate a fluoride supplement.
  • For the treatment of weak bones, 15 to 20mg per day of elemental fluoride is recommended. Your healthcare professional can help determine if you should be taking a fluoride supplement for bone health.

Daily Adequate Intakes (AI) for elemental fluoride from all sources including drinking water are:

  • infants birth through 6 months, 0.01 mg
  • babies age 7 through 12 months, 0.5 mg
  • children 1 through 3 years, 0.7 mg
  • 4 through 8 years, 1 mg
  • 9 through 13 years, 2 mg
  • 14 through 18 years, 3 mg
  • men 19 years and older, 4 mg
  • women 14 years and older, including those who are pregnant or nursing, 3 mg

Daily Upper Intake Levels (UL) is the highest level at which no harmful effects are expected. For fluoride, those levels are:

  • 7 mg for infants birth through 6 months
  • 9 mg for infants 7 through 12 months
  • 3 mg for children 1 through 3 years
  • 2 mg for children 4 through 8 years
  • 10 mg for children older than 8 years, adults, and pregnant and nursing women

Sodium fluoride contains 45% elemental fluoride while monofluorophosphate contains a concentration of 19% elemental fluoride.

It is important to be sure that your child does not swallow fluoride toothpaste or rinses. Only a pea sized amount of toothpaste should be used on their soft bristled toothbrush twice daily to be effective.

More on Fluoride Treatment : Eating After Fluoride Treatment

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Iowa Dental Group Des Moines

1233 63rd Street
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