SDF (Silver Diamine Flouride)


Silver diamine fluoride (SDF) is a clear liquid composed of silver and fluoride that is applied to your child’s teeth in order to slow down or prevent dental decay. Silver provides antibacterial treatment, while fluoride helps to strengthen the tooth enamel, making it more resistant to decay. While it does not restore the tooth to its previous form and function, SDF has many benefits, including: 

  • Pauses cavity development
  • Kills bacteria to prevent decay from spreading
  • Alternative treatment to drilling cavities
  • Painless and non-invasive

Did You Know?

Traditionally, fluoride varnish has been used to prevent tooth decay. Although fluoride varnish is effective, research has shown that SDF is more effective and requires less treatments. In fact, fluoride varnish is recommended to be applied four times a year, while SDF only needs to be applied once a year. 

Frequently Asked Questions: 

Does my child need SDF?

Your child may need SDF if they have a dental cavity in need of treatment. SDF allows them to receive treatment without the need for a dental drill or dental anesthesia, making it a gentle dental treatment. SDF is also a beneficial dental treatment for kids with special needs who may struggle to keep their teeth clean on their own. To find out if SDF is right for your child, schedule a consultation with your San Antonio Pediatric Dentist today.  

How is SDF applied at my San Antonio Pediatric Dental Office?

application of silver diamine fluoride

SDF is a topical treatment, meaning that it is applied to the outside of your child’s teeth. To apply SDF, cotton or gauze will be placed around the affected tooth and excess saliva will be suctioned away to keep the area dry. This prevents the SDF from flowing freely throughout the mouth and instead keeps it isolated to the affected area. Once the area is dry, the SDF will be brushed onto the decayed area. In some cases, SDF may also be applied to healthy tooth enamel for use as a preventative procedure. 

It is important to note that when SDF is applied to the teeth, it forms a compound called silver oxide that causes black staining on the tooth, gums, and lips. Your Stone Oak pediatric dentist will do their best to avoid any staining, but it is always a possibility. While this staining will fade on the gums and lips, it will remain black on the unrestored cavity. For this reason, SDF is generally recommended for use in the back teeth or for primary teeth. 

Is SDF safe?

SDF is considered to be a safe dental treatment for children. The two most common side effects are a metallic taste and temporary gum irritation if in contact with SDF. With that being said, SDF is not recommended for patients with a metal allergy or those who are showing signs of a pulp infection. 

What happens after my child receives SDF treatment?

After SDF treatment, your pediatric dentist will schedule a follow-up appointment to evaluate the treatment area to ensure the SDF is working. They will check for the black staining, as well as to make sure the decayed area has been hardened. In some cases, SDF may be reapplied to prevent decay progression. There are no special instructions that you or your child will need to follow after SDF application. 

ATTN: Families of Kids World Pediatric Dentistry

Dear Families of Kids World Pediatric Dentistry,

We hope you are all well and in good health. Our community has been through a lot over the last few months, and all of us are looking forward to resuming our normal habits and routines. While many things have changed, one thing has remained the same: our commitment to your safety.

Infection control has always been a top priority for our practice, our infection control processes are made so that when you receive care, it is both safe and comfortable. We want to tell you about the infection control procedures we follow in our practice to keep patients and staff safe.

Our office follows infection control recommendations made by the Texas State Dental Board, American Dental Association (ADA), the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). We follow the activities of these agencies so that we are up to date on any new rulings or guidance that may be issued. We do this to make sure that our infection control procedures are current and adhere to each agency recommendations.

You may see some changes when it is time for your next appointment. We made these changes to help protect our patients and staff from the current COVID-19 crisis. The process to check in will for now be different than the previous “normal”

        Before your appointment fill our screening questionnaire and any required forms from our website, this will reduce paperwork at the office. You will be asked those same questions again when you arrive at the office in case anything has changed. The patient’s temperature will be taken upon arrival. Please understand that if required we might have to reschedule your visit.

        Check in by phone when you park your car. You will receive a text to enter the office.

        Please bring only the patient that is being seen and one adult.

        We will guide you to either a seating area assigned with a letter or straight to the treatment room.

        Mandatory:  Please wear mask.

        Please maintain social distancing.

        Only patients in treatment areas when possible, this reduces effects of any aerosols.

        We have hand sanitizer that we will ask you to use when you enter the office. You will also find some in the reception area and other places in the office for you to use as needed.

        Our waiting room will no longer offer magazines, books, toys, ipads and so forth, since those items are difficult to clean and disinfect.

        Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing between patients. That might mean that you are offered fewer options for scheduling your appointment.

        We will do our best to allow greater time between patients to reduce waiting times for you.

We look forward to seeing you again and are happy to answer any questions you may have about the steps we take to keep you, and every patient, safe in our practice. To make an appointment, please call our office at 210 787 1200 or visit our website at

Thank you for being our patient. We value your trust and loyalty and look forward to seeing you and your smiles.


Kids World Pediatric Dentistry Team

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