Fluoride a naturally occurring element helps prevent tooth decay in two ways:

  1. Topically, when applied to erupted teeth
  2. Systemically, when ingested during tooth development.

Topical fluorides include: toothpastes, mouth rinses, and professionally applied fluoride gels and rinses. Sources of systemic fluorides include: water, dietary fluoride supplements in the forms of tablets, drops or lozenges, and fluoride present in food and beverages.

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