Caries is the most common chronic childhood disease that is completely preventable. Traditional approaches of drill, fill, and oral hygiene instruction are not working. Telling parents, children, and caregivers to cut back on drinking sugared and acidic beverages as well is fermentable carbohydrates and to have better oral hygiene has not helped change the caries epidemic. Even treatment under general anesthesia does not take care of the disease as it results in high recurrent caries rates as well as greater costs both monetarily as well as possible long-term effects for the children. Children are not the only ones affected by caries and potential problems. The elderly, special needs patients, rural communities, cancer patients, nursing home residents, people with diabetes, dry mouth sufferers, and people with little to no resources for seeing a dentist are at higher risk and poor outcomes. One thing that has been shown to change the caries rate is silver diamine fluoride (SDF). Using SDF to arrest the caries infection has been implemented around the world for over 50 years, yet we are still too slow and for some people too late to adapt and implement. Not only can we utilize the combination of silver diamine fluoride and glass ionomer cements together for minimally invasive dental treatments, but now we can use SDF preventively in myriad ways.
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