How to Overcome Fluorosis

How to Overcome Fluorosis

When our bodies don’t get enough of the required vitamins and supplements to function correctly; it can begin to suffer a break down. They are also some cases, when too much of something in the body can also be harmful and cause some problems.

Fluorosis is due to an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the body. Individuals get this excessive fluoride through drinking water. Fluorosis affects the teeth and bones.

Who can get it?

Dental fluorosis results from the intake of large amounts of fluoride during the development of your teeth; this usually happens from birth to approximately ages six to eight years old. The occurrence of skeletal fluorosis is seen in places in the world where the intake of fluoride is high. These are places where waters with high levels of fluoride content are found at the foot of high mountains and in areas where the sea has had geological deposits. These places include: China, India, Syria, Egypt, Kenya, Iran, Iraq, Thailand and Japan.

What causes it?

Fluorosis is caused by an excess in the intake of fluoride into the body. Although this condition is rare, it usually happens due to accidental contamination of the drinking water.

How does it happen?

Dental fluorosis usually develops before skeletal fluorosis. In Skeletal fluorosis fluoride gathers in the bones of the body over a period of many years.

Where does this happen?

Fluorosis appears to affect the teeth and bones of the body.

What are the symptoms?

The symptoms of dental and skeletal fluorosis are unique to each one. Dental fluorosis starts off with the appearance of small white areas in the enamel, as the disease progresses the teeth appear stained and pitted. Skeletal fluorosis occurs when fluoride gets into the bone it my increase the stability of the crystal lattice and delay the hardening of the bone, causing the bone to become brittle. At first, the person may incur sporadic pain and stiffness of the joints; it will then lead to limited movement of the joints, skeletal deformities, and intense calcification of the ligaments. When this high fluoride intake overly stimulates the bone formation this can also result in other issues such as a calcium deficiency, osteomalacia, and hyperparathyroidism can occur. In severe cases of fluorosis an individual will experience muscle pain. A person can also experience abdominal pain, excessive saliva, nausea, and vomiting. Seizures and muscle spasms may also happen.

How can it be diagnosed?

Skeletal fluorosis is not easily diagnosed, and many times doctors are not familiar with this illness. It can be confused with various forms of arthritis. The joint pains of fluorosis can happen before the start of bone changes, making it the early stages of fluorosis hard to distinguish from the stages of arthritis. The advanced stages of skeletal fluorosis, the spine mimics the appearance of spondylosis. It is important that doctors check the level of fluoride in the individual’s body. Sometimes this illness is diagnosed by ruling out the other types of illnesses that it can be confused with.

Dental fluorosis will have to be diagnosed by a dentist. Since this is the first sign that a child has been overexposed to fluoride it is important for them to catch it. The fluoride which causes dental fluorosis damages the enamel forming cells, called ameloblast. The damage to these cells results in the mineralization of the teeth, which leads to an increase in the porosity of the enamel. This can lead dentists to make the correct diagnosis of fluorosis. This is a condition that can not be reversed.

What treatments are available?

Dental fluorosis is permanent, it can not be reversed. They are ways however for the dentist to hide the damage. The treatment will depend on the severity of the damage. When fluorosis is mild, the common approach is to sand off the layer of the enamel, this process is known as abrasion. In other instances, composite bonding is done to change the damaged enamel to the color of your teeth. In severe cases, porcelain veneers and used as a shell to cover the surface of the tooth that has been damaged, this is however an expensive option.

Treatment of skeletal fluorosis involves first remove the source of the problem. If it is the drinking water, then that needs to be removed and the drinking water de-fluoride. The person’s diet may also have to be changed; no other treatments are really available.

Fluorosis is an irreversible illness that can lead to permanent damage of the teeth and bones. It is important that your child sees a dentist from early on, this way they can make a early diagnosis of this problem, before it leads to a more serious situation.

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