A new dental hygiene tool for battling tooth decay may soon be available in the form of a toothpaste shown to strengthen teeth by restoring minerals.
Toothpaste: A New Generation?
In traditional fluoride toothpastes, the active ingredients (including soluble fluoride) are applied to the teeth, lightly scrubbed onto and allowed to briefly permeate the surfaces of the teeth, then rinsed away. The effects of the contact are relatively short lived (usually a few hours at best), which is why it is recommended to brush after each meal, but at least twice every day.
According to an Australian Network News article, this new toothpaste—known as BioMinF—works by gradually releasing fluoride ions as well as calcium and phosphate (two minerals that help harden teeth and fight harmful bacteria) over a period of up to 12 hours. The toothpaste has shown success in restoring minerals to tooth enamel, preventing cavities and reducing teeth sensitivity.
The toothpaste, which was developed by researchers at the Queen Mary University of London and Imperial College, is not yet widely available. Its developers plan to bring the product to a broad market within a year, and they are also investigating applications of BioMinF’s active ingredient to professional dental treatments.
Dental Health and Whole-Body Health
Oral diseases, including cavities and gum disease, are the most widespread, preventable diseases in the world, and their dangers are potentially deadly. Untreated cavities can lead to infected teeth, which can then spread infection into the sinuses and even the brain. Gum disease can contribute to an increased risk for life-threatening medical problems including stroke, high blood pressure and heart attack.
Toothpaste may be evolving, but the importance of brushing, flossing, and dental checkups remains. The 2015 Australian Institute of Health and Welfare report “Oral Health and Dental Care in Australia” indicated that dental visits, including preventive care, have been slowly on the rise; in 2013, according to the report, 64 percent of everyone age 5 and older visited a dental practitioner at least once. But tooth decay remains the most common chronic childhood disease, and it seems it can be difficult for adults to stick to healthy habits as well.
Last year, the Oral Health Advisory Council released a report titled “Oral Health and General Health in Australia,” which stated that 49 percent of Australians forget to brush their teeth before they go to bed. Yet 75 percent of Australians over the age of 18 admitted they wished they had taken better care of their teeth.
At My Hills Dentist, Dr. David Lee and our knowledgeable team believe it’s never too late to do right by your smile. Whether you need a simple checkup and teeth cleaning, or you’re seeking to restore your smile and your dental health, please call us at (02) 9686 7375 to schedule your appointment at our Baulkham Hills office.