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THE PERILS OF SODAS AND JUICES

THE GOOD NEWS is that children will have fewer cavities primarily due to sealants, fluoride toothpastes, fluoride supplements and fluoridated water.

THE BAD NEWS is that dental fluorosis is on the rise.

Studies suggest that children are now drinking less water and consuming more sodas and juices. 20 percent of the juices have fluoride concentrations above 1.00 ppm, the upper limit for safe fluoride levels!

Where does your child fit in this trend? What is the risk of him/her developing dental fluorosis? And what is Dental Fluorosis.

Dental Fluorosis

Dental fluorosis occurs when excessive amounts of fluoride are ingested during the early period of tooth development. Mild cases show as small opaque areas on the tooth surface. Severe cases include confluent pitting and brown stains on all teeth surfaces. It is the sum total of fluoride swallowed from water, toothpaste, supplements, and other sources that determine if fluorosis will occur.

On an average, children less than a year old, drink 3 ounces of juices and beverages per day. Children aged 1 to 2 years drink about 9 oz., while children ages 3 to 5 years old drink about 11 oz. Parents and dentists should consider the type and amount of fruit juice consumed by children to ensure that cavities are kept at bay and dental fluorosis does not occur.

Safe levels of Fluoride

Like any nutrient, fluoride is beneficial in the proper amounts, but harmful in excessive amounts While fluoride concentrations of 0.60 to 1.00 ppm is considered safe, white grape juice has a shocking average value of 1.45ppm. Researchers attribute this to insecticides sprayed on the grapes.

Interestingly, grape juices prepared after the skin had been removed from the grapes had no detectable fluoride. A number of factors, including the water used, determine the level of fluoride. Prune, cranberry, tea, red grape, cherry and apple-grape juices all had average fluoride concentrations above 0.60 ppm.

THERE ARE THINGS YOU CAN DO

  • To determine if your tap water is fluoridated, check with DEWA

  • White flecks, chalky opaque areas or worse still, brown, pitted and corroded areas in your teeth call for the dreaded visit to the local dentist.





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