Head & Neck Radiation Patients
- The best time to use fluoride is at bedtime.
- Remove partial or full dentures from the mouth.
- Brush teeth thoroughly with soft toothbrush and regular toothpaste. Floss teeth by sliding the floss up and down each side of each tooth. A supersoft toothbrush, such as one made by Biotene, can usually be used without causing the gums to hurt or bleed. Note: It is very important to remove all food and plaque from between teeth before using fluoride. Food and plaque can prevent the fluoride from reaching the surface of the tooth.
- Place a thin ribbon of the fluoride gel onto your toothbrush. Either 0.4% stannous fluoride (Gel Kam) or 1.1% sodium fluoride (Prevident) may be used. Thoroughly brush the fluoride into all surfaces of the teeth, especially where the tooth meets the gum tissue.
- Allow the fluoride to remain on the teeth for 5 minutes.
- After 5 minutes, thoroughly expectorate (spit out) the residual fluoride.
Very Important: Do not rinse mouth, drink or eat for at least 30 minutes after fluoride use.
- Head and neck radiation therapy patients should begin using fluoride no longer than one week after radiation therapy is completed. Repeat daily for as long as you have natural teeth remaining!!