Why do we put Fluoride Varnish on teeth?

The Benefits of Fluoride Varnish

Fluoride varnish is an excellent way to protect your teeth against tooth decay!  First , it helps to strengthen your teeth against acid attacks by the bacteria found in plaque.  Second, it  can actually reverse early tooth decay.  And third, it has been proven to reduce the number of the cavity-causing bacteria S. mutans. These positive effects can last several days after the application!

Is it safe?

Yes… it has been proven safe for adults and children alike.  Very little of the varnish is ingested as it hardens on the teeth immediately when it comes in contact with saliva.  Some parents may be concerned about it causing discoloration (or dental fluorosis) of their children’s teeth.  Professionally applied fluoride varnish has been shown to not be a factor in dental fluorosis, even on children under the age of 6.

The Procedure

The procedure of placing a fluoride varnish is quick and easy.  Your teeth are dried with gauze or air. Then a thin layer of the varnish is applied to your teeth.   After this you will rinse it out. Your teeth will feel sticky for a few hours but it will wear off.

The fluoride varnish is most effective if you follow these guidelines.

  1. You can eat and drink immediately after treatment but try to eat soft foods for the remainder of the day
  2. Crunchy foods should be avoided for 4 hours as it will remove the varnish
  3. Avoid hot beverages/food for 4 hours, cold and warm foods are fine