When the element fluoride is used in small amounts on a routine basis, it helps to prevent tooth decay. It encourages “remineralization,” a strengthening of weak areas on the teeth. These spots are the beginning of cavity formation. Fluoride occurs naturally in water and in many different foods, as well as in dental products such as toothpaste, mouth rinses, gels, varnish and supplements. Fluoride is effective when combined with a healthy diet and good oral hygiene. Discuss your fluoride options with your pediatric dentist to better understand what is best for your child. There are different types of fluoride applications a pediatric dentist will provide for your child based on their needs. Fluoride is documented to be safe and highly effective. Research indicates water fluoridation, the most cost effective method, has decreased the decay rate by over 50 percent. Only small amounts of fluoride are necessary for the maximum benefit. Talk to your pediatric dentist to get a recommendations for children’s toothpaste.