Fluorosis

Do you have multiple white spots on your teeth? Is your enamel pitted or discolored?  You may have what is known as dental fluorosis.  While fluoride is important for cavity prevention, too much fluoride intake when the permanent teeth are undergoing development can lead to fluorosis.  The critical time period during which the permanent teeth develop is from 3 months of age until about 8 years of age.  During this time, you should not give your children more than the recommended daily dose of fluoride.  If you live in an area where there is fluoride in the drinking water, you should find out what the concentration of fluoride is.   If your drinking water has a concentration of 1ppm (part per million), it is not advisable to take additional fluoride supplements. However, if you do not have fluoride in your drinking water, you should consult with your local dentist to determine what your child’s daily dose should be.  The following pictures show a patient of Dr. Levine’s who had mild-moderate fluorosis.  She opted to have bondings on her front two teeth in order to mask the white spots.  Composite bondings, tooth whitening, microabrasion and porcelain veneers are all options for addressing cosmetic concerns related to fluorosis.