Caries is a disease of the teeth that presents clinically with white or black lesions or "holes" on the surface of the teeth. It is caused by acid-producing bacteria that are concentrated on the surfaces of the teeth and around the gums in the form of dental plaque. Tooth decay can progress very quickly in children’s teeth due to the fact that the enamel and dentin are thinner than those of permanent teeth. This results in the rapid onset of pain in children (toothache) or necrosis of the nerve of children's teeth with the following consequences such as abscess, swelling or fistula or even lesions in the permanent teeth. There are three factors that help prevent and reduce tooth decay: the effective daily brushing, topical fluoride use and the health diet.
Topical application of fluoride on the tooth surface is done through fluoride toothpastes, fluoride solutions, and topical fluoride application by the dentist. Fluoride application is used for years by dentists and is very effective in preventing tooth decay. It is especially useful in children and adults who have an increased risk of developing caries. Some factors that increase the risk of caries in children are poor oral hygiene, existing active caries that have not been treated, eating problems, lack of regular dental check-ups, orthodontic treatment accompanied by poor oral hygiene, decreased salivation, , many existing restorations-fillings, problems of tooth formation and radiation treatment of the head-neck area.
Fluoride is applied by the dentist to children who have a moderate to increased risk of developing caries, usually after scaling-polishing-brushing their teeth and lasts only a few minutes. Fluoride can be in the form of gel, foam or varnish. It is spread on the surface of the teeth either with a microbrush or applied to the teeth with the help of elastic dental plates that are held in the mouth of children for a few minutes. After fluoride application, the child should not eat, drink or rinse for at least 30 minutes so that the fluoride is absorbed by the tooth surfaces and helps to correct tiny tooth decay. This procedure can be repeated in 3, 6 or 12 months depending on the caries risk of the patient. Your dentist may recommend an additional preventive measure, if necessary such as fluoride mouthwash or antimicrobial solution.