Fluoride tablets are said to protect children’s teeth from caries. Öko-Test examined nine preparations in more detail and explained the age for which the various fluoride agents are suitable.
Many pediatricians recommend fluoride tablets to prevent tooth decay. Dentists, on the other hand, often recommend fluoride-containing toothpaste because it can work directly on the milk tooth. Such an effect with fluoride tablets can only be achieved if they are sucked. But that’s exactly what many toddlers find difficult.
There is no clear recommendation for fluoride tablets or fluoride toothpaste. Pediatricians fear that toddlers will swallow a lot of foam while brushing their teeth and that a lot of fluoride will get into the body. Therefore, they recommend taking fluoride tablets at least until the children can reliably spit out the foam while brushing their teeth. Children should be able to do this by the age of three at the latest.
Fluoride hardens the enamel and makes the teeth more resistant to acids. In the mouth, fluoride inhibits bacterial growth and can prevent tooth decay. Too much fluoride is also not good, because then it leaves white spots on the teeth. Fluoride tablets and fluoride toothpaste are therefore too much, explains Öko-Test.
Öko-Test recommends six preparations
Öko-Test paid attention to the age for which the fluoride tablets were rated. Six preparations for infants and toddlers up to two years of age scored “very good”. They fulfill the advice of pediatricians in the guideline, which recommends fluoride tablets until the age of two. The tablets are among the test winners, for example Zyma ﬂ uor D 500 c.C. (for toddlers 0-2 years).
Failed in the testFluorettes ”from Zentiva Pharma, which are available with different fluoride contents for different ages. However, none of the preparations comply with the pediatricians’ guidelines. One time it is aimed at children between 0 and 6 years old, another time for small children from 3 years and a third preparation for children from 6 years. There is also no reference to switching to toothpaste containing fluoride.
Fluoride tablets with vitamin D.
In addition to the active ingredient fluoride, many fluoride tablets also contain vitamin D3. The reason: pediatricians recommend vitamin D3 for rickets prevention. Because vitamin D3 is important for healthy bones, but is hardly contained in breast milk. It would be conceivable to go to the sun with the baby frequently because the body itself forms vitamin D when exposed to UVB radiation.
Since the protective function of the skin of infants has yet to develop, the little ones should not be exposed to direct sunlight, explains the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR). That is why infants also count as a risk group for vitamin D deficiency and pediatricians recommend fluoride tablets with vitamin D. According to this, children should get this until the second experienced early summer. In the Öko-Test, all "very good" fluoride preparations contained added vitamin D3.
Issue 08/2019 (photo: Öko-Test)
When toddlers switch to fluoride toothpaste from the age of two, they no longer need an extra portion of vitamin D. This is the conclusion of the nutrition commission of the German Society for Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine (DGKJ). One of them spoke out against additional vitamin D supplements because the benefits have so far not been proven in any study. Even if children do not reach the desired amount of vitamin D, one cannot yet speak of a deficiency. The experts advise that children should sunbathe at least twice a week so that the body can produce vitamin D..
You can find all the details in the 08/2019 issue of Öko-Test and online at www.ökotest.de.
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