There is and has been a huge debate about fluoride and the consumption of it used in the dental field along with our water supply. Well… The first thing we need to know is that the fluoride we use in a dental office is NOT always the same fluoride they put in our water supply. Most fluoride in tap water is a silico-aluminum fluoride compound, a product of industry that has never been approved by the FDA for human consumption. Fancy that…
Fluoride is promoted to prevent cavities… right? But the facts are that fluoride has no power to prevent cavities. Cavities are caused by bacteria that erode holes in teeth, and fluoride does nothing to help us fight these bacteria (except at dangerously strong concentrations, when it works as a poison to kill them). Ie: poison. Fluoride is useful in promoting tooth repair, after damage has been done. If enamel crystals re-grow in the presence of fluoride, they become bigger, smoother, and more perfect, than enamel formed without fluoride. Big crystals have the opportunity to connect with each other, providing a way to bridge gaps and heal holes in the tooth’s outer layer. A strong outer layer will better resist future attacks from mouth acidity. There is no reason to drink fluoride, since the benefits are from the interaction of fluoride with the tooth surface. Toothpaste and rinses offer these benefits without the risks that come from ingesting a toxic kind of fluoride, or too much of it.
Now if we join forces (xylitol AND fluoride), the effect is synergistic. This means that when you use xylitol it is beneficial, and fluoride can also be beneficial. When you use these products together for oral health, the effects are greater than you expect by using each product alone.
The following study has pictures that show the cavity-healing effects of using both xylitol and fluoride. One of the conclusions of this specific study showed that remineralization is accelerated when xylitol is used with fluoride. Check it out for yourself!
In conclusion, both xylitol and fluoride produce great benefits. If you have issues with cavities, the two used together is the best bet. Use fluoride products (i.e.: toothpaste, mouthwash) along with a daily intake of xyltiol products.
Zellie products offer Xylitol wipes for infants teeth to protect them as well as chewable bears for toddlers and young children. For adults they offer gum and mints. Spry is another great company to get xylitol gum from and Epic as well. It is best to chew the gum after meals and/or snacks. Best results are seen when you have at least 5 exposures to xylitol throughout the day, with a total amount of 5-10 grams per day for ultimate protection.