We all remember going to the dentist as a child and, at the end of our cleaning and check-up appointment, receiving a fluoride treatment. The old, hard trays were filled to the rim with an orange or grape flavoured gel and placed in our mouths for four long minutes. To make matters worse, we were told to avoid anything to eat or drink for 30 minutes. This meant no water to rinse the horrible taste out of our mouths. The good news is that times have changed.
Introducing fluoride varnish
Fluoride varnish has been around since the 1980s in Canada and Europe. This varnish is a highly-concentrated fluoride treatment that is painted onto the enamel of the teeth by a dentist or dental hygienist. The varnish is able to stay in contact with the teeth for several hours, helping prevent teeth from decay and sensitivity.
What is fluoride varnish?
The varnish is clear and has an extended release of 5% sodium fluoride, calcium phosphate, and xylitol over a 24-hour period. Studies have shown that the longer the varnish stays in contact with the teeth the more effective it is.
How is fluoride varnish applied?
The varnish is easily applied using a small disposable brush. The varnish is thick and will not drip, and it comes in several pleasant flavours including mint, cherry, and bubble gum. Patients may eat and drink immediately following the application of the varnish, and rinsing with water is allowed. Patients are instructed to avoid brushing their teeth for 4-6 hours following the treatment.
Are there different types of fluoride varnish?
Yes. There are several different brands of varnish. At Dr. Pong’s we are happy to offer 3M 5% sodium fluoride white varnish with over 10 years of clinical success.
For more information about fluoride varnishes, or other dental treatments, please contact the office of Dr. Simon Pong.