The “Smart” Fillings of the Future
21st century dental innovations are on the rise, and this creativity now includes a “smart” fix for cavities. A new type of filling, made with bioactive glass instead of metals like mercury and silver, helps restore damaged teeth. Metal fillings used by most dentists may need to be replaced after a period of time and only cover up previously damaged teeth. But these British-made “active” fillings last longer and help rebuild the tooth naturally.
How do these fillings work?
The bioactive glass has the ability to remineralize the once-decayed site on a tooth. Over time it releases materials like fluoride and calcium that strengthen tooth mineral. Did you know you can get another cavity under an existing traditional silver or white filling? Bioactive glass fillings greatly reduce the risk of developing another cavity by depositing tooth material into the site where the old cavity formed. By “rebuilding” the tooth, the glass filling reverses some of the damage done by the original cavity and makes the tooth surface less favorable for further cavity formation.
Can I find “smart” fillings at my dentist’s office?
Not quite. Researchers at BioMin Technologies are still developing this technology, and they’re in the process of incorporating it into things like toothpastes that are easy to use at home. Keep your eye out, though. Rumor has it these cool new fillings will be available for use by 2020 as part of an effort to eliminate mercury from dental products.
Want to read more about this advancement in dentistry? Read the full study here!