Fluoride: Friend or Foe?

Practitioner Spotlight: Dr. Michelle Jorgensen

Dr. Michelle Jorgensen is a certified Doctor of Dental Science (DDS) in American Fork, Utah. Dentistry is not only her profession, but her hobby and her passion. The challenge of helping someone get what they really want for their lifelong smile is what she lives for every day.

What is fluoride and how does it work?

Fluoride is similar in structure to calcium, so it can replace calcium in the crystals that make up the enamel of a tooth. The fluoride forms a stronger, but more brittle crystal, which makes the tooth more resistant to tooth decay. This can be very useful in someone that is prone to tooth decay, but can be detrimental to other organs and systems in the body.

When should I use fluoride?

Is fluoride good for your teeth? It can be, in very specific cases. Fluoride is a mineral that can help remineralize teeth if used directly on the tooth. The use of fluoride is recommended with direct use only where it is EXACTLY needed. For example, a very shallow cavity, a sensitive root, an area of acidic erosion are all problems that direct fluoride can help alleviate. There is never a reason to take fluoride internally (such as in toothpastes, water, etc.), but directly on the tooth can be effective if used correctly.

When should I avoid fluoride?

When fluoride is taken internally through water, toothpaste, or supplements, it is difficult to regulate the dose. If you use too much fluoride for teeth, it can cause serious problems with your teeth, such as:

  • It weakens teeth and makes them more brittle
  • It can cause unsightly white and brown spots on teeth
  • It kills a calcium uptake enzyme which makes teeth less able to uptake calcium
  • It upsets hormones and tooth remineralization

Why fluoride in water is dangerous

Fluoride is typically added to water not to improve its drinkability, but rather to treat our teeth. Your tap water may be treated with fluoride and it is impossible to know how much of a fluoride dosage you and your family are subjected to in a day.

What fluoride does to the body

  • Studies done with lab animals have shown that fluoride increases the brain’s absorption of aluminum- an element found in the brain’s of most Alzheimer’s patients.
  • Three different studies have shown that fluoridation leads to osteoporosis and hip fractures.
  • Extra fluoride also damages the muscles, joints and nerves, leading to stiff joints, muscular degeneration, and neurological problems.

We are all being medicated with fluoride through our drinking water. Add toothpaste and/or mouth rinse with any supplements taken and you can guarantee that you and your family are potentially being over-medicated with fluoride.

How to remove fluoride from water

If you live in an area with water fluoridation, it is highly recommended by holistic dental care professionals to invest in a water filter that can effectively filter out fluoride.

Alternatives to fluoride toothpaste

Bentonite Clay used right on the problem site. Apply as a paste to sensitive areas that need remineralization
MI Paste – This is a holistic dentist prescribed paste that helps add minerals directly to your teeth.
Hydrogen Peroxide and salt rinse – both will alkalize your mouth and help if your sensitivity is from acid in your mouth.

Take control of your fluoride ingestion and application. Use fluoride when needed.

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