Fluoride in diet
Fluoride in small amounts can reduce tooth decays. Adding fluoride to tap water has helped reducing the tooth cavities in children by 50 – 60%. These are the amounts of fluoride needed to be taken daily for each age group as recommended by The Food and Nutrition Board at the Institute of Medicine:
* 0 – 6 months: 0.01 milligrams mg/day
* 7 – 12 months: 0.5 mg/day
* 1 – 3 years: 0.7 mg/day
* 4 – 8 years: 1.0 mg/day
* 9 – 13 years: 2.0 mg/day
Adolescents and Adults
* Males age 14 to 18 years: 3.0 mg/day
* Males over 18 years: 4.0 mg/day
* Females over 14 years: 3.0 mg/day
As a family dentist I suggest you meet the required intake of fluoride (and all the other essential minerals and vitamins) by having a balanced diet with variety of foods.
As a kids dentist I suggest using fluoride toothpaste when your kids become preschool-age. Use only a small amount of the toothpaste. Swallowing too much fluoride can leave permanent stains on the teeth (enamel hypermineralization). Your family dentist or your kids dentist can help you determine if you and your child are getting enough fluoride.