01/07/2013  |  
Nate Berkus Grateful for Preventive Dental Care in Childhood

Nate Berkus, TV host and author, got his start in interior design at an early age. “I was barely in grade school when I helped my mother rearrange the living room furniture for the first time,” he recently told Dear Doctor magazine. Berkus credits his sparkling smile to another early habit: regular preventive dental care. “I'm grateful for having been given fluoride treatments and sealants as a child. Healthy habits should start at a young age,” Berkus observed — and we couldn't have said it better.

Dental sealants fill in the naturally-occurring crevices in teeth, where bacteria can hide and cause decay. They even work in areas where your brush can't reach. Fluoride treatments are another great way to prevent cavities in children. They help strengthen the tooth's hard outer surface (enamel), making it more resistant to tooth decay. But if there's already fluoride in toothpaste and water, is additional fluoride really needed?

If your child is at risk for tooth decay — because of sugar consumption, existing cavities, or less-than-perfect brushing and flossing habits — then he or she may benefit from professional application of concentrated fluoride directly to the tooth surfaces. Learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine article “Topical Fluoride.”

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