Fluoride Concerns

Hi Dr. Ellie,

I came upon your site while I was researching xylitol products. It is a great site! What I really like is you take time to respond to people’s questions and concerns. So, I hope you’ll respond to some of my concerns.

I was looking for xylitol products without fluoride, sodium benzoate, and SLS. I am allergic to sodium benzoate. From all the advise you give your patients, you highly recommend use of fluoride which I do not understand. For starters, all the city water is fluoridated and on top of that if we use oral care products with fluoride, don’t you think we are compounding the ill effect of fluoride. Please read information on www.naturalnews.com and also refer to EWG.org, e.g. Crest toothpaste which you so highly recommend is rated between 4-7 in the hazard score. Even on the Zellies website there is information on fluoride which I think you should read. Using fluoride for oral care is old school of dentistry, and I agree, some dentists believe it is the Holy Grail. You’re a great proponent of xylitol, which is great. However, I am confused when you recommend Listerine and Act rinses (check EWG for hazard score) in addition to xylitol gums and mints. Is this really necessary? Is xylitol rinses not enough? Also, all the information on fluoride is not exactly very promising and yet you continue to recommend as part of your dental kit.

Do you have any ties with Zellies? Looks like it is your company? To that effect, xylitol that is being used is corn based from China. Is it non GMO and is the corn organic? Coming from China, I’m a bit wary with all the recent stuff that went on with the baby milk, drugs, and toys from China. What procedures do you have in place to monitor this product to guarantee its safety and efficacy? I was just getting ready to order some gum and granules but I wanted to hear from you.


Hi L,

I will try to answer all your questions! Let me know if I miss any.

First Fluoride:

I do not recommend ingesting fluoride in any amount.
I only recommend rinsing with a high quality sodium fluoride (ACT mouth rinse). Sodium fluoride is a particular kind of fluoride that is very stable and (at the dilution of 0.05%) will help to make teeth stronger and more resistant to acidic damage.

I do not think that city water in Rochester is a good substitute and personally I rarely drink Rochester water: it is acidic, contains a silico-fluoride product and is treated with aluminum sulphate.

I am very familiar with people who are afraid of fluoride and there is reason for this fear but you have to differentiate the different kinds of fluoride and also the difference between rinsing and ingesting it.

I do not recommend fluoride supplements or fluoride treatments for children at the dentist. I do recommend a dilute fluoride rinse One that you spit out after you have used it.

The idea of ingesting fluoride for dental health is “old “school so you are correct about this. BUT>>>>>>>
The idea of making teeth more resistant to acidic damage with dilute fluoride rinse …. is very “new” school

You should check out UC San Francisco work of the current Dean: John Featherstone a brilliant scientist. He explains that in order to avoid cavities you must tip the balance in the mouth away from acidity and build resistance of tooth enamel.

The use of Listerine followed by ACT is specifically aimed at making tooth enamel more acid resistant.

I answer questions from people who are frustrated with the state of their teeth. They have flossed, gone to the dentist and tried everything they have been given without success. Often these people have weak, damaged teeth and don’t know where to turn. Their gums are receding and they don’t have the money for the treatments recommended to them.

My system can bring relief, control the problems and in many cases help reverse much or all of the damage.

I hope you understand that I am not here to debate fluoride. There will always be people who are confused about fluoride but it is really quite simple. I suggest only sodium fluoride in toothpaste and as a dilute rinse. You do not ingest either.

Many people who fear fluoride have horrible teeth yet will not use a fluoride rinse. I cannot help those people.

If you have great teeth and are distrustful of ACT rinse then use products that you do trust.
I would caution you against baking soda, peroxide and many of the pastes and rinses from the health food stores that are too abrasive or acidic.

I view myself as a dentist with a simple cure. I read, look at science and most of all check results in patient mouths. I have been a geriatric and pediatric dentist and have been learning about teeth for over 35 years.

By the way, yes my company is Zellies.
My gum is made from birch tree xylitol in Scandinavia and my mints are made in the USA.

Thanks so much for your questions,
Best Wishes,

Ellie Phillips DDS
Dental Health for Everyone!
26, Corporate Woods,
Rochester NY 14623

Categories: Uncategorized


  • Amy Ekis says:

    I have been using Biotene toothpaste (which is for drymouth) becuase I heard it decreases the chances of getting canker sores, mouth ulcers. Could this have anything to do with the 7 small cavities I just found out I had?

  • Dr. Ellie says:

    Biotene would not be the reason for your cavities – but it would not protect you from them.I would suggest you adopt my Complete Mouth Care System and see the results!http://www.zellies.com/store.asp?pid=14406&catid=19708 Zellies are perfect for protecting teeth from dry mouth problems – especially when used as part of the system.http://www.zellies.com/client_images/catalog19708/pages/files/NEWZelliesCompleteMouthcareSystem.pdf Good luck – small cavities can heal themselves with this system if you start early enough.Xylitol helps to put minerals back into the deeper layers of the cavities and the dilute fluoride of ACT helps to heal the surface of the tooth. Good luck,Ellie

  • Anonymous says:

    Can you elaborate on why you do not recommend fluoride treatments for children at the dentist. My son is 3 1/2 and I've refused the treatment once and accepted it another time when I knew he would be capable of spitting rather than swallowing (we'd been practicing with water at home for a long time). But I'm still not really sure what to do. Is the concern with possible ingestion of fluoride in such high concentration?Thanks!~ Beata

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