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What is Fluoride Varnish & Its Benefits

What is Fluoride Varnish & Its Benefits


Fluoride varnish is a type of preventative treatment that is used to both protect and strengthen the integrity of the teeth. They are typically used in pediatric dentistry, as they are incredibly useful for protecting children’s teeth while they learn how to practice proper oral hygiene. Continue reading to learn more about the various uses and benefits of fluoride varnishes.


What is Fluoride Varnish & Its Uses

Fluoride varnish is a form of concentrated fluoride that is applied directly to the surface and sides of the teeth. 


Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that has proven to be exceptionally useful in preventing tooth decay. When applied to the teeth, it remineralizes and strengthens the protective layer of tooth enamel in order to help prevent cavities.


Our teeth are constantly gaining and losing minerals. Bacteria, plaque, and sugars cause the teeth to lose minerals – a process known as demineralization. Minerals are gained back – a process known as remineralization – when proper oral care is practiced through brushing, flossing, and the use of mouthwash. Remineralization is also encouraged when water and certain healthy foods are consumed.


When there is more demineralization than remineralization occurring, tooth decay occurs. This tends to happen frequently with children, as they are not quite adept at caring for their teeth on their own yet, and may not adhere to a tooth-friendly diet.


This is where fluoride varnish applications come in. When regularly applied as recommended by a dental professional, fluoride varnish treatment can help children maintain strong and healthy teeth as they learn how to care for their teeth.


Benefits of Fluoride Varnish

Some of the most notable benefits of fluoride varnish treatment include:

  • Teeth are protected from new decay
  • Tooth sensitivity is reduced
  • Prevents new bacterial growth
  • New cavities that are just beginning to form can be stopped and even reversed
  • Nontoxic treatment
  • Child-friendly flavors
  • Quick and easy treatment application process
  • Can be applied to both baby and adult teeth
  • Can help patients with xerostomia (dry mouth)
  • Can help patients with gum disease
  • Allows patients to take a proactive approach to their oral health and dental care


Choosing a Fluoride Varnish Product 

When faced with the task of choosing the best fluoride varnish product for your dental practice, consider the following:

  • Fluoride release time
  • Flavor
  • Color
  • Set time


Safco Dental Supply is proud to offer a wide range of effective and powerful dental fluoride varnishes, such as:

  • Safco Fluoride Varnish: Contains 22,600 ppm fluoride plus Xylitol. Tinted for easy placement and dries clear.
  • White Fluoride Varnish: 5% sodium fluoride varnish. Can be applied to wet teeth. Rapid fluoride release. Patients can eat and drink after just 2 hours.
  • UltraThin & Clear Fluoride Varnish: 5% sodium fluoride varnish. Thin and consistent formula that is resistant to stringing and clumping.
  • Duraflor Varnish: 5% sodium fluoride varnish plus Xylitol. Provides hypersensitivity relief for up to six months. Can also be used as a cavity liner. Patients can eat and drink 4-6 hours after application.
  • Extended Release Vanish White Varnish: 22,660 ppm fluoride plus Xylitol and tri-calcium phosphate (TCP). Completely clear; virtually disappears after application. Continuously releases fluoride for up to 24 hours. Helps relieve hypersensitivity.


Explore the full line of fluoride varnish from Safco Dental Supply for your practice.

The Application Process of Fluoride Varnish

Fluoride varnish is actually painted directly on the teeth with a special brush. The application itself is typically done by a dental hygienist, though it may be carried out by a dentist as well. The process is very quick and easy and does not cause the patient any pain.


After the fluoride is applied, it is allowed to rest on the teeth to allow the fluoride to have time to soak into the tooth enamel. Patients are typically advised to avoid hard, sticky, or hot foods on the day of treatment to protect the newly-applied varnish. They are also asked to refrain from brushing their teeth until the following day.


Side Effects and Risks Associated with Fluoride Varnish

When properly used, fluoride is completely safe and very effective. However, the most common side effect of fluoride treatment is fluorosis – a condition in which the teeth become discolored due to a high concentration of fluoride.


Fluorosis can be characterized by spots that develop on the surfaces of the teeth, ranging anywhere in shade from white to dark brown.


It is also important to keep in mind that fluoride can become toxic in high doses. For this reason, it is important to closely monitor fluoride intake – especially in children. 


Below are some steps that can be taken in order to avoid fluoride toxicity for children:

  • Use just a pea-sized amount of toothpaste
  • Avoid flavored toothpaste for very young children, as they are more likely to swallow flavored vs unflavored toothpaste


Find Quality Products & Tips for Your Practice from Safco

With the information you have learned here, you should have a solid understanding of what fluoride varnish application is, as well as its various benefits.


For high-quality instruments and dental equipment, place your trust in Safco Dental Supply. We provide a wide range of disposable dental products to fit every need, with free shipping on orders over $250. From infection control products to dental disposables, we have you covered.


We strive to get you your products as fast as possible. All orders placed before 4:30 pm CST (3:30 pm on Friday) are shipped out same-day.


Give us a call at 800.621.2178 to speak with one of our experts about finding the best dental fluoride varnish products for your practice.

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