What Are The Benefits of Fluoride Toothpaste?

All toothpastes contain common ingredients like abrasives (such as calcium carbonate or calcium phosphate) to clean teeth without scratching, binders (like sodium alginate or xanthan gum) to maintain elasticity and prevent drying, humectants (such as glycerol or propylene glycol) to retain moisture, foaming agents (like sodium lauryl sulfate), and preservatives to prevent microorganism growth. Some toothpastes also include additional ingredients like fluoride to strengthen enamel and prevent cavities, flavorings such as spearmint or peppermint, sweeteners like sorbitol and xylitol, and anti-sensitivity agents like strontium chloride or potassium nitrate.

In this blog, we turn our full attention to fluoride and what reasons warrant it be included in toothpaste formulas. Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral found in soil, rocks, water, and many foods. It plays a crucial role in tooth development for children under seven by strengthening developing enamel. In both children and adults, fluoride helps slow down the acid production of plaque, protecting teeth from decay. Many cities and countries add fluoride to drinking water, reducing tooth decay by at least 25%.


What purpose does fluoride serve in a toothpaste?

What Are The Benefits of Fluoride Toothpaste

Fluoride serves an essential purpose in toothpaste by protecting and strengthening your tooth enamel. Your enamel constantly undergoes a process where it loses and gains minerals. Acids from bacteria, plaque, and sugars cause mineral loss, known as demineralization. Conversely, remineralization occurs when you consume minerals like fluoride, calcium, and phosphate from food and water. Tooth decay happens when demineralization outpaces remineralization.

Fluoride in toothpaste helps combat tooth decay by making enamel more resistant to acid attacks. It can even help reverse early stages of decay, effectively fortifying your teeth. Besides toothpaste, fluoride is also found in many foods and drinking water. You can get low-strength fluoride mouthwash over the counter, while stronger forms require a prescription.

Dentists can also apply fluoride to your teeth through various methods, such as using foam in a custom tray, painting on varnish, or applying gel either with a brush or in a tray.

Benefits of using a fluoride toothpaste

Benefits of using a fluoride toothpaste

Fluoride is beneficial for maintaining healthy teeth and preventing decay. It's particularly crucial for infants and children between 6 months and 16 years old. Fluoride helps developing teeth as well as those that have already grown in. The American Dental Association (ADA) advises parents to monitor fluoride intake in young children to avoid excessive amounts. 

For young children, the ADA recommends using a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste during brushing, ensuring they spit it out rather than swallow it. Children under 6 years old should not use fluoride mouth rinses unless advised by a dentist. Additionally, fluoride supplements are not recommended for children under 6 months.

Adults also benefit from fluoride, especially those with certain conditions. If you have dry mouth (xerostomia) from medications or health conditions like Sjögren’s syndrome, fluoride can help as saliva naturally helps wash away food and bacteria. Adults with gum disease, a history of tooth decay, or dental work like crowns, bridges, braces, or dentures can also benefit from additional fluoride to protect against cavities and decay.

Purexa probiotic toothpaste contains moderated amount of fluoride that inhibits S. Mutans, balances the oral microbiota, prevents drop in pH, and lowers the risk of tooth decay.

Also Read - How Probiotics Help in Anti-Cavity?

How safe is fluoride?

How safe is fluoride

Fluoride in toothpaste is widely considered safe, though there is ongoing debate about overall fluoride intake from sources like water, food, and mouthwashes. The International Association of Oral Medicine and Toxicology (IAOMT) opposes added fluoride in water and products, associating it with health issues such as acne, cardiovascular problems, diabetes, low fertility rates, early puberty in girls, bone and joint disorders, immune system complications, lower IQ, cognitive deficits, ADHD, neurological issues, and thyroid dysfunction.

A 2016 study indicated that higher fluoride exposure before birth might reduce cognitive abilities in children. Researchers tested fluoride levels in 299 pregnant women and their children at ages 4 and 6-12, suggesting a link between high fluoride levels in mothers and lower IQ scores in their children. However, critics noted that the fluoride levels in the study were significantly higher than those typically found in U.S. drinking water, and other influencing factors were not considered.

Overall, studies linking fluoride to major health conditions have been criticized for unreliable data and poor design. Fluoride has been used in drinking water for 75 years, with research affirming its safety. While excessive fluoride can lead to issues like fluorosis, the appropriate amount offers significant dental protection with minimal health risks.


Fluoride toothpaste is a key part of keeping your teeth healthy and strong. It helps prevent cavities by making your enamel more resistant to acid and can even reverse early signs of decay. While there are debates about fluoride intake from different sources, using fluoride toothpaste as directed is safe and beneficial. Both children and adults can benefit from its protective qualities. 


Written by Dr. Shipra Jaiswal, BDS, MDS, a Periodontist and Gums Specialist

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