Now, I have no idea if that's the exact brand or not. Bow Morton recently shared this photo on the Thruston Elementary School for Life Facebook page.  As a child who went to Thruston, I remember the infamous fluoride treatments all to well.  In fact, I daresay that anybody who attended an elementary school in Kentucky in the late 70s and early 80s will likely have the same bizarre recollection of standing in the hallway, taking a swig of fluoride, swirling it around in your mouth for thirty seconds or so, then spitting it back into the cup.

At Thruston, that ritual was even more defined and, to this day, remains burned into my brain.  On the first floor of the school, there was a ramp in the hallway.  When it was fluoride treatment time, all of us would line up on opposite sides of that ramp and repeat the steps above. Get your cup of fluoride, swish it around in your mouth for a while, then spit it back in your cup, then throw your cup into the trashcan. I mean, what?

While I don't recall the exact brand of fluoride the school used, Glen Pierce, Thruston's beloved custodian, does. When Bow shared the NaFrinse photo on social media, Glen immediately confirmed it. He wrote, "Yep! That's it."

Of course, the mere sight and mention of it, brought memories flooding back for several fellow Thruston Tomcats. Sabra Ray said, "That was the worst!"

Melissa Stevens hilarious summed up the experience.  She wrote, "Swish Day! I can still taste, smell this just by thinking about it."  And Melissa is right! It had this weird taste that kinda resembled swimming pool water.  They said it was fluoride, but it kinda tasted like chlorine.  I realize it was distributed to us to help strengthen our teeth, but the whole process was bizarre at best.

After posting his NaFrinse photo, Bow also shared a link to a film called The Stuff.  Remember this?  I won't lie. This perfectly sums up how all of us felt standing in that hallway, watching our classmates rinse their teeth on "Swish Day."

By the way, I decided to see if NaFrinse is still manufactured.  From what I can tell from some quick online research, it is no longer available, at least domestically.

I did, however, find NaFrinse available as a special order on The instructions for use triggered me.  LOL!  I immediately flashed back to the ramp at Thruston.  This step-by-step process for recommended use sounds eerily familiar.

1. Each participant receives one cup and one napkin.
2. Remove the lid from the cup.
3. Empty the contents of the cup into the mouth and swish thoroughly for 1 minute.
4. HOLD CUP AGAINST THE MOUTH. Slowly spit solution back into the cup.
5. Wipe the mouth with the napkin then place the napkin slowly into the cup to absorb the solution.
6. Discard the cup with the napkin in the plastic bag we provide.

The product description, oddly enough, also describes the importance of cups (we used Dixie Cups at Thruston) in administering the product to children.  It says:

Cups are commonplace to all children. They know how to use cups and avoid accidental spillage.

While WebMd has a page detailing the benefits and side effects of the drug, says the product has been discontinued.

WBKR-FM logo
Get our free mobile app


Old Daviess County and Owensboro Schools and What They Are Now

Of the many old schools in Owensboro and Daviess County, some are still active, while others have been repurposed.

More From WBKR-FM