Dear Dr. Ellie:
I am wondering if you recommend fluoride tablets as supplement in areas without fluoridated water? I read your Clean White System and wonder how much of it safely applies to children? (other than the zylitol, which is safe for kids). My children are 3.5 and 5.5 years old.
The subject of fluoride is complicated.
I do not believe that we need to ingest fluoride for dental health.
On the other hand, the topical use of fluoride in a dilute solution will help teeth mineralize. The correct use of fluoride can build strength into tooth enamel and even help heal cavities.
The ideal use of fluoride is as a rinse and its effects can be amazing.
I recommend ACT which is a 0.05% dilute fluoride. The liquid coats teeth nicely and reaches crevices and pits in the tooth surface.
Only children who are able to rinse and spit should use a fluoride mouth rinse. We do not want them to use it as a drink.
I recommend teaching children to rinse and spit with tap water. Gradually add drops of ACT to this water as they show competence. Most children of 5 are able to rinse well and they can start using the full concentration of ACT at this time.
If a younger child needs extra protection, I recommend a parent applying a drop on a q-tip directly onto any problem tooth. This can even be used for toddlers’ teeth or in cases of early childhood caries on infant teeth.
Regular use of xylitol is also important and will help teeth strengthen and heal. From 3 years old chewing gum may be used and the kids gum is really delicious. Kids do not need to chew for long just enough to get the sugary liquid to clean their teeth!
If you would like some samples of xylitol and the ACT bubblegum flavor rinse I would be happy to send you some. I also recommend children start using toothpaste from around 3 or 4 years old and I would be happy to ship your the Crest as a sample to try. Before this age, kids can brush without toothpaste or with a drop of ACT to moisten the brush.
I hope this helps,
The entire system with Closys and Listerine is for adult teeth ( usually as kids enter the teens)
Please let me have an address if you would like samples,
Dental Health for Everyone!
26 Corporate Woods,
Rochester NY 14623