Fluorosis is a cosmetic condition caused by overexposure to fluoride during the first eight years of life.
Teeth become discolored, and sometimes the effects are so subtle— faint white marks laced around each tooth— that only dental professionals can say for sure.
Sometimes it’s not so subtle. Sometimes fluorosis means yellow stains, brown pits, strange variations taking the glow away from a dimpled smile. Physically, fluorosis won’t hurt those who have it. But psychologically, it can cause social stress or low self-esteem.
Becoming a parent is becoming a silent, underpaid superhero— we protect our children from villains they have no idea exist. The threat of fluorosis hides in the beauty of most modern toothpaste. Maybe it’s the taste of fresh bubblegum or the glittering pink of the paste itself, but children are prone to swallowing and eating this product that protects them from plaque, cavities, gingivitis.
Unbeknownst to them, there can be too much of a good thing— children who swallow toothpaste are increasing their fluoride intake, exposing themselves to the very real possibility of spotted teeth. Preventing fluorosis in children can be as simple as heavily supervising them, making sure they spit their toothpaste out when they’re done. Children who haven’t been taught to spit yet shouldn’t use toothpaste with fluoride at all.
For some parents, weary of fluoride, the answer may lie in an alternative product.Dr. Sharp’s toothpaste, for example, is vegan, alcohol-free, gluten-free, non-GMO, and yes, fluoride-free. The Wild Berry flavor is made specifically with kids in mind and is not artificially flavored or colored.
When it comes to our children, it is always important to be an informed consumer.
Read more about teaching kids good oral hygiene here.
Read about non-toxic personal care here.