Hydroxyapatite vs Fluoride: Which Is Better for Your Teeth?

caucasian girl wearing casual clothes smiling cheerful showing and pointing with fingers teeth and mouthFluoride toothpaste has been the standard for many decades, but hydroxyapatite is a rising challenger. While restorative dentistry can make a transformative difference in your smile, the everyday ingredients you use in your dental hygiene play the greatest role in your overall oral health.

What are the differences between the two? Which is better?

In this post, we’ll explore hydroxyapatite vs fluoride, what both do for your teeth, and how they can strengthen enamel and remineralization.


Technically named nano-hydroxyapatite (n-HA), this is a newer ingredient that you can find in modern toothpastes. Its job is to prevent demineralization and promote remineralization in your teeth.

In other words, it helps you fight cavities. Bacteria and acids can damage the outer layer of your teeth — known as enamel. Once the enamel is damaged, then bacteria can get into your teeth, and that’s how you get cavities.

When your teeth are remineralized, it restores the enamel layer to prevent and treat cavities. Hydroxyapatite is actually the same substance that makes up most of your enamel, making it a natural choice for remineralization.


Before manufacturers figured out how to put hydroxyapatite into toothpaste, they used fluoride. In fact, fluoride has been in use with toothpaste and general dentistry for a long time. It’s the gold standard.

Fluoride serves the exact same purpose. It shores up your enamel to prevent cavities.

Technically, the chemical bonds formed through fluoride are different from hydroxyapatite, but the end result is pretty much the same thing. You get healthier teeth.

There is one important note to all of this.

Fluoride is a toxic substance in large quantities. There isn’t enough in your toothpaste to hurt you. In fact, fluoride is in most tap water for the same reason — protecting teeth. In these small amounts, it’s harmless. Still, some people like to minimize exposure to substances like this. If that applies to you, then you might prefer hydroxyapatite.

Hydroxyapatite vs Fluoride: Which Is Better?

Here’s the short answer. It doesn’t matter which one you use. They are both very effective. In fact, a comparative study looked at the health impacts and benefits of each type of toothpaste. They were unable to find any statistical differences between the two ingredients.

Whether you use fluoride or hydroxyapatite, as long as one of them is in your toothpaste (and you brush regularly), you’re doing the right thing.

Schedule an Appointment Today

If you have questions about your toothpaste or anything else regarding dental health, you can contact Paul Covell, DDS, today. Dr. Covell trained at the prestigious Las Vegas Institute (LVI) for Advanced Dental Studies and serves as a member of the American Dental Association, Texas Dental Association, and Greater Houston Dental Society.

You can reach our Pasadena, TX, dental office at 713-943-9832, or contact us online.


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