Toothpaste containing minerals found in bones emerges as an alternative to conventional toothpaste
Brushing your teeth twice a day can keep you away from the dentist. Improving the toothpaste you use to keep your teeth clean will help prevent problems caused by poor dental health.
Most toothpastes use fluoride, a powerful tool for oral hygiene. However, in the case of children, problems can arise because they swallow a lot of toothpaste. Excessive intake of fluoride can affect bones. However, using a small amount of toothpaste can reduce the effectiveness of brushing.
To find an alternative, scientists and a Polish clinical research team have developed a toothpaste containing hydroxyapatite (hydroxyapatite), which is just as effective as fluoride toothpaste in preventing tooth decay. “Hydroxyapatite is a safe and effective alternative to fluoride that, with daily use, helps prevent tooth decay,” said co-author of the study, Professor Elzwieta Paczynska, Poznan Medical University, Poland.
Mineral ingredients, minimally invasive dental treatment
Hydroxyapatite is a mineral found in bones. It is known to be safe for human consumption. Previous studies have shown that it helps prevent oral diseases such as periodontitis. This not only prevents tooth decay by suppressing the dissolution of calcium and phosphorus components that make up teeth, but can also contribute to ‘remineralization’ that strengthens the damaged tooth surface.
“The goal of current dental treatment is to use ‘minimally invasive treatment’ as much as possible, which means trying to preserve as much tissue as possible,” said Professor Pazynska. “The use of the compound for remineralization is beneficial as it can reduce the need for invasive lesion treatment using a drill,” he added.
The research team conducted a double-blind, randomized clinical trial in adults aged 18-45 for 18 months. The 171 participants were divided into a control group using fluoridated toothpaste and a hydroxyapatite toothpaste group. These are people who had at least 10 decay-free teeth, used electric toothbrushes, and had no problems with their existing teeth. Participants brushed their teeth at the same time every day (twice a day, after meals, for 3 minutes each time). The research team did not monitor their diet separately.
Effects of hydroxyapatite toothpaste
During the trial period, participants visited a clinician every six months to be screened for early-stage caries. The study found that nearly 90% of both groups had no new cavities. There was no statistical difference in caries prevention effect between the group using hydroxyapatite toothpaste and the control group using fluoride toothpaste. Both showed the same effect.
“Previously published clinical trials have also shown the effectiveness of hydroxyapatite in preventing caries in at-risk groups, such as children and patients undergoing orthodontic treatment,” said Professor Pazynska. It turns out that this is important from a public health point of view.”
The study was published in Frontiers in Public Health. The original title is ‘Caries-preventing effect of a hydroxyapatite-toothpaste in adults: A 18 months double-blinded randomized clinical trial’.
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