A discussion with Donna Brogan, RDH, BS
Throughout her many years as a dental hygienist, Donna Brogan, RDH, BS, has prided herself on being a prevention specialist, educating her patients on the importance of preventing caries.
“Prevention isn’t just for kids, it is for patients of all ages, to protect against the harmful effects we face as we age,” she explains. “The NIH reports that 92% of adults age 20 to 64 have had dental caries in their permanent teeth and, according to the ADA, there remains one age group with an increasing rate of caries—older Americans. From early developmental needs of children, to the recession and systemic health changes as we age, including the devastating effects of xerostomia caused by prescription medications, patients of all ages deserve great preventive care. So, I decided to get more active in prevention/risk assessment with my adult patients, including finding a fluoride varnish that adults and kids enjoy, and that I could place very quickly and easily without all of the mess of the old varnishes that had been available.”
Brogan selected FluoroDose from Centrix after the product hit all her marks. “It’s inexpensive, easy to place, has great flavors, and my patients, adult patients specifically, really accept it much better than the previous varnishes I had been using,” she says.
She estimates that the product costs between 83 cents to $1 per application. “How often is the least expensive also the best?”
The American Dental Association considers the use of fluoride varnish to be a safe and efficacious part of a caries prevention program, which includes caries diagnosis, risk assessment, and regular dental care. FluoroDose contains 5% sodium fluoride, the maximum dosage allowed, in a convenient single-use LolliPack.
Dental teams appreciate that the product is smooth, not stringy or clumpy, so “It is the easiest, cleanest, fastest-to-apply varnish I have ever tried. It doesn’t clump on the applicator brush when it comes in contact with moisture—so I don’t have to clean the brush halfway through the application. It goes on the patient’s teeth with long swipes and wicks interproximally; this saves me time because I don’t have to precisely paint each surface,” adds Brogan.
FluoroDose dries in seconds on contact with saliva, remains on the tooth for six to eight hours, and provides optimum fluoride uptake. FluoroDose is approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration for treating dentinal sensitivity, can be applied four times a year, and is routinely applied on children’s teeth after cleaning.
The product doesn’t just help children have better oral health for life. Adults can also benefit, particularly if they show frequent decay, gingival recession, sensitive teeth, xerostomia, cariogenic bacteria, plaque buildup, etc.
“If my patient reports sensitivity on a specific tooth before I scale, we stop and discuss varnish as a desensitizer and how it occludes tubules. I open a unit-dose pack and apply varnish to the root surface that is sensitive. I then set the varnish aside and continue with the appointment; the patient will notice a reduction in discomfort. At the end of the appointment, I apply varnish to the rest of the teeth and again to the sensitive root surfaces,” asserts Brogan.
It also is not a food allergen risk, as it is free of all dairy, egg, gluten, soy, peanut, tree nuts, tree nut derivatives, fish/shellfish and seed products. In addition, this varnish is available in five great-tasting flavors to suit everyone’s preferences: caramel, bubble gum, mint, cherry, and melon.
“Children seem to always ask for cherry or bubble gum, teens like mint and melon, and adults prefer caramel, mint, and melon. I would say caramel is the most popular but it might be because it’s my favorite flavor, so I must ‘sell’ it better to my fellow coffee/sweet lovers,” says Brogan.
An added bonus to this varnish is that it stays clear on the teeth, with no yellowing. According to Brogan, her adult patients love this feature and have remarked that FluoroDose has a much smoother, thinner coating and tastes better than all other varnishes they’ve had in the past.
“Whether they’re six months old or 90 years old, FluoroDose is with them every step of the way. It truly is prevention from their first tooth all the way through their lives.”