This chemical compound, also called "sodium fluoride," helps strengthen your bones and teeth. It's found in your teeth's hard outer layer (called the "enamel"). Throughout your life, your body uses fluoride to repair your teeth's enamel. Fluoride helps prevent cavities.

How you get fluoride

Fluoride comes from minerals in the soil and rocks. It dissolves out of these and makes its way into rivers, lakes and wells. It's also found in some of the foods you eat. Because it's so important for your health, fluoride is added to some public water supplies. It's added to many types of toothpaste and to other oral hygiene products.

You need fluoride

Everyone can benefit from fluoride. You can get more by drinking tap water, not bottled water, because fluoride is often filtered out of bottled water. You can use a toothpaste or mouth rinse that contains fluoride. Your dentist may recommend that you take a fluoride supplement. And, your dentist may recommend a fluoride gel to help strengthen your teeth.


Fluoride is important for healthy, strong teeth. Talk to your dentist for more information.