The uptake and retention of alkali-soluble and alkali-insoluble (fluorapatite) fluoride in human teeth in vivo was investigated in a group of orthodontic patients from whom two premolars were to be extracted. Daily mouthrinses with 0.05 % NaF for 2 weeks increased the fluoride content of the outer enamel layer (≈ 5 μm) by 15.9%. One rinse with 0.2% NaFincreased the fluoride content by 5.8%. Amajor part of the fluoride deposited was soluble in alkali. No significant uptake of fluoride in a second enamel layer (≈5 μm) was found. It is suggested that the alkali-soluble fraction of fluoride, representing the major part of the fluoride retentate, might serve as a significant reservoir of fluoride, and is perhaps a factor of prime importants concerning its cariostatic effect.

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