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On a recent Google Hangout, Anastasia Turchetta, RDH, chatted with Jen Post, RDH, an adjunct assistant professor at the University of Minnesota, about how fluoride works and if it is safe.
When using a prescription toothpaste that delivers fluoride, a protective barrier is created around the calcium during manufacturing to allow it to coexist with the fluoride ions. This barrier breaks down when it comes in contact with saliva, allowing remineralization to occur.
"The fluoride helps bring the calcium and phosphate into the tooth, so I like to think of it as a bridge," Post said. "Those are really the building blocks of the enamel and help make the tooth strong."
During one part of the interview below, Turchetta asked Post how long that her patients can expect the fluoride to last.
"When we think about fluoride, we don't always think about how long it lasts. Really it's more about the mechanism of action," Post said. "As long as the calcium and phosphate are available in the saliva and we have fluoride introduced, then it's going to be bringing those in as long as it's available."