Silver Diamine Fluoride

Does your child’s smile suffer from severe tooth decay? Have you been told your child’s cavities will need to be treated over the course of several visits? Want to make sure your little one’s smile is as healthy as possible? At Smile Up Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics we are proud to offer silver diamine fluoride in New York, NY for our patients that are experiencing severe tooth decay and cavity formation and are interested in preventing further complications and reducing the sensitivity of the tooth. Not sure if our Scarsdale silver diamine fluoride treatment is right for your child? We often recommend SDF treatment for:

  • Children suffering from extreme decay/severe childhood cavities
  • Children who have difficulty sitting for treatment
  • Patients with special needs
  • Children with cavities that need to be treated over the course of numerous visits

Interested in silver diamine fluoride for your child and their smile? Contact Smile Up Pediatric Dentistry and orthodontist near you
today to schedule an appointment. We’d be happy to evaluate their smile and overall oral health to determine the perfect treatment option.


Silver diamine fluoride (also commonly referred to as SDF treatment) is an FDA-approved dental solution that can treat and prevent tooth decay and dental cavities while reducing any tooth sensitivity the patient may experience. Silver diamine fluoride is made with two active ingredients which include the silver component which is an antimicrobial agent that can kill bacteria and prevent plaque formation. The fluoride prevents further demineralization and damage of the tooth structure.


  • Silver diamine fluoride provides immediate relief for tooth sensitivity.
  • Silver diamine fluoride can kill the bacteria responsible for cavities.
  • Silver diamine fluoride hardens the enamel, making it more resistant to damage.
  • Silver diamine fluoride does not stain healthy teeth.


The entire process for silver diamine fluoride is quite simple. Prior to treatment, the teeth will be gently brushed and rinsed. The affected teeth will be isolated for treatment. Next, a microbrush is used to apply silver diamine fluoride to the lesion(s) for at least two minutes. Decayed areas will be stained black, while healthy tooth structure remains unstained. Any excess SDF is removed, and the patient is all done!


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What is Silver Diamine Fluoride?

Silver diamine fluoride (SDF) is a topical medication used to slow down or stop dental decay in both primary and permanent teeth. SDF is a colorless liquid that contains both silver and fluoride. Silver’s antibacterial properties are well known, as is fluoride’s ability to remineralize damaged tooth enamel. Together, these two products can be used to stop the progression of tooth decay and stabilize the tooth until such time that the dentist determines further dental treatment is needed. When applied to a tooth with a cavity, SDF hardens the softened tooth structure, turning the damaged portion of the tooth black in color. Further, through a halo effect of silver’s antibacterial properties, adjacent teeth may receive some anti-cavity protection. Best practices for the use of SDF are under study, and though success rates are high, they are not 100%. Regular follow up is important, not only to determine if SDF retreatment is needed, but also to assess if additional or alternative dental treatment is required.

How long does it take for SDF to turn black?

The cavity will darken to nearly black permanently within seconds, it can get darker over the course of the next 24 hours. SDF may cause short-term irritation of the gums and may temporarily stain lips, cheeks or gums, usually fading in 2-3 weeks. It has an anti-bacterial effect on all teeth.

How long does SDF last on teeth?

SDF permanently stains the teeth, but multiple applications may be needed to prevent demineralization of the teeth. The number of applications depends on the patient and their needs.

Can I brush my teeth after SDF?

Yes, but wait 1 hour after treatment to allow time for SDF to penetrate into the tooth.

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