This module on fluoride reviews the important role of fluoride in the prevention of dental caries. The primary mechanism of action of fluoride in preventing dental caries is topical. Fluoride prevents dental caries by enhancing remineralization of the tooth enamel, inhibiting demineralization of the tooth enamel, and making cariogenic bacteria less able to produce acid from carbohydrates. Educators can download the module for presentation in a didactic lecture/discussion format or assign learners to study it on their own. It is a part of Protecting All Children’s Teeth (PACT), a series created by the American Academy of Pediatrics Oral Health Initiative to educate medical students, residents, pediatric primary care providers, and others interested in infant, child, and adolescent health about the importance of oral health in overall health. The curriculum provides in-depth coverage of child oral health, oral health guidance, and preventive care to increase comfort in recognizing dental disease and conditions and communicating with dental professionals. PACT has been used since 2007 by physicians in training at various medical schools and residency levels as well as by those in clinical practice.
- State the three mechanisms of action of fluoride in dental caries prevention.
- Summarize the available sources of fluoride and their relative benefits.
- List strategies to minimize the development of fluorosis.
- Discuss the fluoride supplementation guidelines.
- Recognize the various forms of fluorosis and recall their prevalence.
None to report.
The web-design of the PACT program was funded by the AAP Oral health Initiative, with support from the Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB).
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