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Silver Diamine Fluoride

Silver Diamine Fluoride - What it is


The application of Silver Diamine Fluoride (SDF) is a form of treatment to arrest the progression of cavities in your child. Traditionally, dental treatment involves removal of tooth decay, and restoration of the tooth with a filling.

What is Silver Diamine Fluoride?

Silver Diamine Fluoride (SDF) is an anti-microbial agent used on cavities to stop and prevent tooth decay. It is a colourless liquid that is applied on the affected teeth using a microbrush. There may be a mild metallic taste and an ammonia smell during application, which will dissipate quickly.


Silver Diamine Fluoride - Symptoms

Silver Diamine Fluoride - How to prevent?

Why is SDF Recommended?

For your child who has severe early childhood caries (SECC) and needs early intervention to prevent the disease from progressing, SDF provides the quickest way to get the affected teeth or difficult-to-treat caries managed in one visit. For best results, application may be recommended every 6-12 months.

SDF may be an alternative to traditional treatment for uncooperative and fearful children.

What Are the Benefits of SDF?

  • SDF has been proven to be the most effective in stopping tooth decay
  • It is non-intimidating and does not involve the use of dental drills or injection
  • The procedure is fast, painless and easy
  • SDF relieves sensitivity
  • Fewer follow-up visits as compared to other forms of fluoride

Silver Diamine Fluoride - Causes and Risk Factors

Is it Safe?
There have been no severe adverse events reported in Japan, Australia and Mexico, where it has been used for decades, and there are no reported health risks.

Common Side Effects?

  • Tooth cavities will be stained black permanently. Healthy tooth structure will not be stained.
  • Tooth-coloured fillings and crowns may discolour if SDF is applied to them.
  • Accidental application on skin/ gums may leave a temporary harmless brown/white stain, which will resolve in 1-3 weeks.
  • In rare cases, there may be a mild stinging sensation accompanying small red or white lesions, which will go away in 1-2days.
  • The risk of tooth decay progression remains if there are no changes in high-risk habits.

SDF should not be used if:

  1. Your child is allergic to silver
  2. There are ulcers in the mouth

What Other Treatment Options Do I Have?

  • Depending on the location and extent of the tooth decay, other treatment includes filling or crown, extraction involving local or general anaesthesia
  • If left untreated, cavities may lead to continued deterioration of dental condition. Symptoms may increase in severity overtime.

Silver Diamine Fluoride - Diagnosis

Silver Diamine Fluoride - Treatments

Silver Diamine Fluoride - Preparing for surgery

Silver Diamine Fluoride - Post-surgery care

Silver Diamine Fluoride - Other Information

The information provided is not intended as medical advice. Terms of use. Information provided by SingHealth

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