Recently, the American Dental Association changes the guidelines regarding the use of fluoridated toothpaste in children under the age of 2. After reviewing 17 studies published in the Journal of the American Dental Association, there is evidence that using a smear of fluoridated toothpaste as soon as teeth erupt will help reduce the child’s risk for tooth decay. Pediatric dentists in Sugar Land, Texas applaud the decision and are now counseling parents on the volume of toothpaste to be used.
Fluoride: How Much is Too Much?
During your child’s visit to our Sugar Land dentist for kids, you may be advised about using a fluoridated toothpaste in your child’s daily brushing routines. The new guidelines suggest using a soft, age-appropriate sized brush with a smear of toothpaste for children under 2, and a pea sized amount for children ages 2-5. In order to maximize the beneficial effects of fluoride in the toothpaste, rinsing after brushing should be kept to a minimum or even eliminated.
“We want to minimize the amount of fluoride consumption to reduce the risk of fluorosis while simultaneously adding a preventive tool for kids 2 and under that we haven’t recommended previously,” said Dr. Jonathan Shenkin, a spokesman for the A.D.A. and a pediatric dentist in Augusta, ME. “Only a tiny amount of toothpaste should be smeared on the brush since some youngsters are likely to ingest some of the fluoride.”
Why the Change?
After decades of recommending fluoridated toothpaste be used in only kids over the age of 3, the ADA’s decision came as a surprise to many.
“An early start is crucial,” Dr. Shenkin said, “Because children with dental decay are at greater risk of developing cavities as adults. By starting earlier, we can effectively reduce a lifetime of disease for a lot of kids.”
Many pediatric dentists in Sugar Land, Texas are jumping on the bandwagon and advising parents about their child’s risk for dental cavities, and the use of fluoridated toothpaste in children as soon as teeth erupt from the gums. If you would like to consult a dentist about the change and the impact it could have on your child’s smile, contact our Sugar Land dentist for kids and schedule your appointment!