Other sources of fluoride
Not everyone lives in an area with fluoridated
water. For those people, fluoride is available in
other forms.
Fluoride supplements
Fluoride pills, drops, and lozenges are
available only by prescription. They are
for children between 6 months and 16
years old who live in areas with little or no
fluoride in the and are at high risk of
tooth decay. For best results, these fluoride
products should be used every day until
the child is 16 years old. Ask your child’s
dentist or physician about your child’s
fluoride needs.
Over-the-counter fluoride products
Fluoride toothpastes and mouthrinses with
the ADA Seal of Acceptance help prevent
cavities in children and adults. When you
shop for dental products, look for the ADA
Seal so you know that a product is safe and
effective. Your teeth and those of your
children should be brushed twice a day
using a toothpaste that contains fluoride.
Children ages 3 to 6
Place no more than a
pea-sized amount of
fluoride toothpaste on the
toothbrush. Help your child
brush and teach him or her
to spit out the toothpaste
and not swallow it.
Children under 3
Begin brushing the teeth
of your children under the
age 3 as soon as teeth
begin to come into the
mouth. Place no more
than a smear or grain-
of-rice-sized amount of
fluoride toothpaste on the brush. Watch
children to make sure they don’t swallow
the toothpaste.
Children under 6
When it comes to use of fluoride
mouthrinses, they are not recommended
for children under 6.
Parents should keep an eye on children
under 6 when they use any dental product
with fluoride. More fluoride is not always
better. These products should be stored
out of the reach of young children.
Have more questions?
Visit MouthHealthy.org/fluoride
for the latest information about
fluoride and fluoridation.
What are the benefits of water
Studies show water fluoridation reduces cavities
by at least 25% in children and adults.
It benefits everyone, especially those who are
not able to get regular dental care.
It saves money. The cost of a lifetime of
fluoridated water is generally less than the
cost of one filling.
It’s easy! You can help protect your teeth simply
by drinking water, anytime, anywhere.
To find out if the tap water in your area contains
fluoride at a level that can help prevent cavities, ask
your dentist. You also can contact your community’s
water supplier. If you have a private well, the
Environmental Protection Agency recommends
that you test your water every year for safety and
at least once every three years for fluoride levels.
Is fluoride safe?
More than 70 years of study and experience have
shown that water fluoridation is safe. Fluoridation
of community water is supported by leading
health organizations including the American
Dental Association (ADA), the Centers for Disease
Control and Prevention, the American Academy
of Pediatrics, the American Medical Association,
and the World Health Organization.
What is the best way
to get fluoride?
Teeth get fluoride in two ways: when it is
swallowed and when it is put onto the tooth’s
surface. To prevent cavities, it is best to get a
little bit of fluoride both ways.
Fluoride that is swallowed usually comes from
tap water. In some parts of the USA, the tap water
naturally has just the right amount of fluoride. In other
places, the tap water does not have enough fluoride.
So some cities and towns add fluoride to the tap water.
This is called “water fluoridation.” If your community’s
water does not have enough fluoride, talk to your
dentist or doctor about your family’s fluoride needs.
Bottled water
Most bottled waters do not have
the levels of fluoride needed to help
prevent cavities. If you drink bottled
water frequently, you may be missing
the benefits of fluoridation. To learn
about the fluoride level in the water,
check the label. If it is not listed, then
you should contact the bottler.
Home water treatment systems
Your home water filter system might remove fluoride
from the water. Reverse osmosis and distillation
units remove almost all of the fluoride. However,
filters that come in pitchers or attach to your faucet
generally do not remove a lot of fluoride. Check with
the product’s company to learn if the filter or system
removes fluoride from your drinking water.
Topical fluoride
When fluoride is put onto the surface of your
teeth, it is called topical fluoride. Fluoride
toothpastes and mouthrinses sold in stores that
contain fluoride are one way for your teeth to
get topical fluoride. Also, your dentist can apply
fluoride gel or varnish to your teeth.
For children under
three years old
For children three
to six years old
Floss your teeth once a day to help remove food and plaque
from between your teeth and under the gum
line. Be patient with yourself and don’t give
up! It takes time to get the hang of flossing.
Your dentist or hygienist can show you the right way to
floss. Here are some tips that may help:
Quick Reference
1. Break off about 18 inches of floss
and wind most of it around one of
your index fingers. Wind the rest
of floss around a finger on the
other hand. This finger will take
up the used floss.
3. When the floss reaches the
gum line, curve it into a “C” shape
against one tooth. Gently slide it
into the space between the gum
and the tooth.
2. Hold the floss tightly between your
thumbs and forefingers. Guide the
floss between your teeth, using a
gentle rubbing motion. To avoid
injuring your gums, never snap the
floss into gum tissue.
4. Hold the floss tightly against
the tooth. Gently rub the side of
the tooth with an up-and-down
motion. Try not to use a sawing
motion once the floss is worked
into place.
5. Repeat this method on the rest
of your teeth. As you move from
tooth to tooth, unwind the clean
floss with one finger and take up
the used floss with the finger on the
other hand. Do not forget to floss
the back side of the last tooth.
Cavities that are not
treated can cause pain,
loss of teeth, and spread
of infection. The good
news is you can prevent
most cavities with good
dental care and fluoride.
This brochure explains how
fluoride helps keep teeth
strong and healthy.
Nature’s Cavity
Fluoride (FLOOR-eyed) is a
mineral that occurs naturally in all
water sources even the oceans.
Fluoride can prevent cavities in
children and adults. Fluoride helps
protect tooth enamel from the
acid attacks that cause cavities.
It also helps repair weakened
enamel before cavities form.
What is fluoride?
Why is it important?water
Fluoride: Nature’s Cavity Fighter
Many patients have misconceptions about fluoride or don’t fully appreciate its
importance. Help them see fluoride as a dental health ally with this brochure. Revised
in language that’s easy to read, it lists sources of fluoride, both topical and systemic.
Benefits and safety of water fluoridation are outlined, and patients are reminded that
most bottled waters lack fluoride. Also gives guidance on proper amounts of fluoride
toothpaste for young children.
English, 8 panels, 50 per pack
Brushing Quick Reference Card
Show patients the #1 way to fight tooth decay and gum disease with
step-by-step photos. Reminds them that two minutes, twice a day is
optimal. Includes healthy smile tips and blank lines for your own message.
100 per pack
Flossing Quick Reference Card
If patients feel clumsy about flossing or just plain forget, this handy card
gives pointers and encouragement. Close-up photos show each step of
proper flossing technique. Great to send home as a hygiene reminder!
Add your own message using the blank lines on the back.
100 per pack
Basic Brushing
A toothbrush is an important tool in the fight against decay and
disease. Encourage twice-daily brushing with this simple step-
by-step guide. Compact size makes it perfect to send home as
a “refresher course” in hygiene.
Mini-brochure 5.875” x 3” 100 per pack
Basic Flossing
Get patients to see flossing as an essential part of oral care.
Mini-brochure shows the steps with easy-to-follow photos,
while the text coaches patients to stick with it until they get
the hang of flossing. Mentions helpful types of interdental
cleaners, too.
Mini-brochure 5.875” x 3” 100 per pack
Taking Care of Your Teeth
and Gums
This step-by-step guide discusses the importance
of a home care routine. Its detailed brushing and
flossing photos eliminate quesswork. Text explains
the cause of decay and gum disease, motivating
patients to stick with it. Points out that it is easier
and less expensive to prevent disease and decay
than to treat them. Also includes tips to help
patients choose dental products.
English, 8 panels, 50 per pack
Spanish, 8 panels, 50 per pack
Pricing for Quick Reference Cards
1 $35.00 $52.50
2-9 $29.75 $44.65
10+ $26.25 $39.35
Pricing for Mini-Brochures
1 $35.00 $52.50
2-9 $29.75 $44.65
10+ $26.25 $39.35
1 $28.00 $42.00
2-9 $23.80 $35.70
10+ $21.00 $31.50
Our brochures are revised regularly to reflect current
science. We also rely on ADA member input. Have great
clinical photos to share? Email us at catalog@ada.org
for photo submission guidelines.
150 $73.50 $109.50
400 $180.00 $268.00
800 $336.00 $472.00
Pricing for Brochures
ORDER BY PHONE: 800.947.4746
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