Choosing the best dental fluoride varnish

Tere Jimenez 6 minutes read

 Offering fluoride varnish at your dental office can significantly improve your patient's experience. Studies show that using fluoride varnish leads to a 43% reduction in dental caries.

As a dental provider, you value your patient's health and satisfaction. That's why choosing the most advanced dental fluoride products available will make your patient less reluctant to return for their next dental checkup.

With so many different types of varnish available, it can be difficult to narrow down the best options. If you're struggling to choose between fluoride varnishes, here's some advice to help you find the right one for your patients.

What are the Advantages of Fluoride Varnish?

Your office may only offer fluoride trays right now. If so, you may not be aware of the many benefits of using fluoride varnish.

Many patients struggle with the fluoride portion of their dental visit, due to the uncomfortable trays that awkwardly fit inside their mouths. They are then expected to sit for several minutes while the fluoride sets in.

Even worse, they can't eat for 30 minutes after their treatment. This is enough to make any patient dissatisfied.

But what if it didn't have to be this way? Fluoride varnish can help.

Easy Application of Fluoride Varnish

Fluoride varnish is convenient for you as a provider, and for your patients. The application process of fluoride varnish differs greatly from a fluoride gel or foam that has to be put inside of a tray.

It roughly takes 30 seconds to apply topical fluoride. Instead of your dental hygienists taking the time to prepare fluoride trays and having the patient wait with oversized trays in their mouths, just use the easy-to-apply varnish instead.

Your hygienist will only have to open the varnish package, mix it with a brush, and then paint it on the patient's teeth.

With such a short application time, your dental team will have more time during appointments to educate their patient on dental care.

No Mess

Fluoride varnish only requires an applicator and the varnish itself. There are no messy trays filled with fluoride foam or drooling patients. This makes for a quick cleanup, allowing your dental team to see more patients in a timely manner.

Fewer Restrictions

Some patients dread going to the dentist because of the 30-minute eating and drinking restriction after their appointment. Many patients, especially children are very impatient.

Instead of waiting the full length of time after getting fluoride trays, they'll begin eating immediately after their appointment.

With fluoride varnish, patients don't have to wait to eat or drink. The varnish dries and activates immediately.

It's completely safe for the patient to have a snack after their appointment. Patients only have to avoid brushing or flossing their teeth for six to eight hours, which they'll probably have no problem with.


Topical fluoride doesn't stop working right after it's applied. It actively releases fluoride for up to 24 hours. As a result, your patients will be guarded against tooth sensitivity and will have less tooth decay.


Parents are often concerned with the safety of fluoride gels. They fear that their children will ingest the fluoride given to them in trays, resulting in fluorosis or poisoning. Some parents of infants are also skeptical about the safety of fluoride treatments for their little one.

Fortunately, your dental team will be able to reassure parents that they don't need to be worried about their child receiving fluoride varnish treatment. Children can't swallow fluoride varnish, and it's perfectly safe to use on an infant's first teeth.

Parents will be more likely to support fluoride treatments for their child after your dental team explains the safety of fluoride varnish.

How to Choose the Best Fluoride Varnish

There are several things to consider when choosing a fluoride varnish for your practice. It all comes down to what's best for your dental team and patients.


Most varnishes only require that the teeth have to be toothbrush clean and moist. However, some need the teeth to be dry. When the patient closes their mouth, the fluoride varnish is activated by their saliva.

It's more efficient to use the varnish products that require a moist area, as you won't need to go through the effort of drying the teeth. The varnish will stay on the patient's teeth until they brush it off.


To a patient, fluoride varnish might sound like something they'd use to remodel wood floors. A patient receiving fluoride varnish for the first time will be surprised at its pleasant flavor during application.

Like fluoride gel, topical fluoride also comes in a wide variety of flavors like cherry, mint, bubblegum and more. Choosing different flavors for your office can help satisfy the taste buds of patients young and old.

Additional Ingredients

Some fluoride varnishes have additional benefits for your patients' teeth. Minerals like calcium and phosphate are added into the varnish, making teeth stronger.

Using a fluoride varnish with these ingredients can ward off sensitivity in certain patients and provide greater protection against cavities.

Release Time

There are fluoride varnishes that release fluoride quickly, while others have a slower release rate. Because some patients don't like the feeling of fluoride varnish on their teeth and aren't fond of the flavor, they'll brush it off immediately after the appointment.

Patients who receive a fast-acting varnish will still benefit from the treatment regardless of whether they brush it off or not. The fluoride absorbs into the teeth quickly, allowing the patient to receive the essential minerals before brushing it off.

Use Fluoride Varnish in Your Practice

Fluoride varnish not only helps your patients, but it also helps your dental team. Your patients will receive excellent care, while your dental team won't have to use up extra time to prepare and clean fluoride trays.

Being aware of all the different properties of fluoride varnish can prepare you for the next step of converting your practice from foam to varnish.

Looking for the best topical fluoride for your office? Check out our wonderful varnish products and request a sample today.


Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and may not reflect the views of the company.

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