The first cavity-filling composite created by the team of bioengineers is to have the harmful bacteria destroyed and tooth enamel lost by decay restored.
Maryland University School of Dentistry lead researcher Professor Huakun Xu said that, this new material which is made with nanotechnology is able to rebuild the tooth’s minerals through controlling destructive bacteria co-existing in mouth microbes’ natural colony instead of using conventional fillings in having tooth decay limited.
In a news release, Xu quoted “Tooth decay means that the mineral content in the tooth has been dissolved by the organic acids secreted by bacteria residing in biofilms or plaques on the tooth surface.” Adding, “These organisms convert carbohydrates to acids that decrease the minerals in the tooth structure.”
The nano-sized silver particles are contained in the primer like the adhesive (made up of antibacterial elements) can be used in preparing drilled-out cavities in order to have the harmful bacteria controlled. Which made it different from the process of drilling out a decayed tooth where the cavity still contains residual bacteria –which is then makes removing impossible. And in order to have the cavity stick tight into the tooth’s tissue, the antibacterial adhesive will be spread.
Xu commented, “The reason we want to get the antibacterial agents also into primers and adhesives is that these are the first things that cover the internal surfaces of the tooth cavity and flow into tiny dental tubules inside the tooth”
The decay or secondary caries at the restoration margins is the main reason for post-filling tooth failure. The residual bacteria however that remain after the decayed tooth has been drilled away by the dentist will be killed by the new primer and adhesive. Also, limiting tooth bacteria’s acid production is possible with the high pH content of the antibacterial agent through its base of silver nanoparticles and quaternary ammonium.
Regenerating tooth minerals in the prepared tooth is possible with the composite containing calcium phosphate nanoparticles, as per Xu’s statement.
Although there still is a need to consider additional research in confirming its longevity, fillings made from the new nano-composite along with antibacterial adhesive and antibacterial primer, according to scientists should last longer than the usual five
Xu as well added, “The bottom line is we are continuing to improve these materials and making them stronger in their antibacterial and remineralizing capacities as well as increasing their longevity.”
Voluteers’ saliva has been the materials used by the researchers in having this new product tested by the use of biofilms. Human and animal’s teeth are as well their goal of having these products tested.