Hydroxyapatite Enamel Remineralization

What is Hydroxyapatite?

Hydroxyapatite is a naturally occurring mineral form of calcium phosphate, which is the main mineral component of teeth and bones. It is often used in bioceramic materials for dental and orthopedic implants because of its biocompatibility and ability to bond with living bone tissue. It is also used in toothpaste and other dental products for its ability to remineralize and strengthen tooth enamel.

To learn more about how hydroxyapatite can remineralize teeth we need to understand the anatomy of a tooth.

“Hydroxyapatite has long been among the most studied biomaterials in the medical field for both its proven biocompatibility and for being the main constituent of the mineral part of bone and teeth. Hydroxyapatite is also an important source of calcium and phosphate, very important for the remineralization of demineralized enamel areas.”

What Are Teeth Made Of?

The human tooth is composed of several layers, including the enamel, dentin, and pulp. The enamel, the hard, white outer layer of the tooth, is composed mostly of hydroxyapatite, a mineral that is also found in bone. Hydroxyapatite gives the tooth its strength and durability. The dentin, the layer underneath the enamel, is softer and less mineralized than enamel. The pulp, the innermost layer of the tooth, contains nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissue. The teeth are also surrounded by the periodontal ligament that connects the tooth to the jawbone.

Now that we understand the different layers of the tooth let's talk about what might demineralize your tooth or in other words create a cavity.

What Causes Tooth Decay

A cavity, also known as tooth decay, is formed when bacteria in the mouth produce acids that erode the enamel and demineralize the hard outer layer of the tooth.

The most common type of bacteria found in the mouth is Streptococcus mutans, which thrives on sugar and produces lactic acid as a byproduct. When sugar is consumed, the bacteria ferment it and produce acid, which can lower the pH in the mouth and dissolve the mineral structure of the tooth enamel taking away important minerals.

Over time, this acid can create a hole or "cavity" in the tooth. If left untreated, the decay can progress to the dentin and even the pulp, potentially leading to a tooth abscess or infection.

Regular oral hygiene practices such as brushing, flossing, and limiting sugar intake can help to prevent cavities. One of the best ways to avoid getting cavities is to make sure they stay mineralized by limiting acid.

It short a tooth decay is caused by a loss of minerals' so let's learn more about how to strengthen the tooth by adding minerals back or in other remineralization.

Enamel Remineralization

Remineralization is the process of repairing and rebuilding tooth enamel using minerals, such as hydroxyapatite. Hydroxyapatite can be used as a treatment for teeth that have been damaged by acid erosion, such as that caused by cavities. Applying hydroxyapatite to the affected area of the tooth, it can help to remineralize and repair the tooth.

Different forms of hydroxyapatite can be used for remineralization, such as toothpaste, gels, varnishes, and rinses. These forms can be used alone or in combination with other treatments. Some toothpaste and other oral care products contain hydroxyapatite as an active ingredient, and these products can help to remineralize teeth over time.

Our very own Dr. Michelle Jorgensen in collaboration with Karalynne Call from Just Ingredients has created a remineralizing tooth powder.

Remineralizing Tooth Powder

With daily use, it may stop and prevent tooth decay, eliminate tooth sensitivity, naturally whiten teeth and strengthen gums with only healthy, natural ingredients you feel good about!

It is important to note that remineralization is not a substitute for conventional filling and should be used as an adjunctive treatment in mild cases and remineralize small cavities. Moreover, remineralization is most effective when it is used in combination with good oral hygiene practices, such as brushing and flossing, and a healthy diet that limits sugary and acidic foods and drinks.

It’s always best to consult with a dentist to determine the best treatment for your specific case and to ensure that any remineralization treatments are used in conjunction with regular dental check-ups and professional cleanings.

Let’s learn a little more about how fluoride works and some of the potential harmful effects it might have on health.

Harmful Effects Of Fluoride

Fluoride, a naturally occurring mineral, is commonly added to toothpastes, mouthwashes, and public water supplies as a way to help prevent tooth decay. Fluoride works by strengthening the tooth enamel, making it more resistant to acid erosion caused by bacteria and sugars.

However, excessive fluoride intake can lead to a condition called fluorosis, which causes discoloration and mottling of the teeth. In severe cases, it can also cause pitting and damage to the tooth enamel. Fluoride intake can be excessive either by consuming too much fluoride from any sources or by consuming fluoride from multiple sources.

Additionally, some studies have suggested a potential link between fluoride exposure and certain health problems such as bone fractures, thyroid dysfunction and even cancer. However, more research is needed to confirm these findings and the evidence is not yet strong enough to draw any definitive conclusions.

It's important to consult with a dentist or a physician to determine the appropriate level of fluoride exposure for an individual and to monitor fluoride intake from all sources. Many toothpaste and mouthwash use fluoride but it is not recommended to swallow it.

“One of the major concerns with using fluoridated toothpaste on children under the age of 6 years is the development of dental fluorosis. ”

Hydroxyapatite Toothpaste VS Fluoride

Research on the use of hydroxyapatite as an alternative to fluoride is still ongoing, but some studies have shown that it may be effective in reducing the progression of cavities and promoting remineralization of the tooth.

The tooth does not naturally contain fluoride but is over 90% hydroxyapatite so why add something new when you can add back what will naturally strengthen the tooth.    

Unlike fluoride, hydroxyapatite occurs naturally in our bodies and is nontoxic and biocompatible. It is also safe for kids who may accidentally swallow toothpaste.

Here at Total Care Dental & Wellness we promote looking for dental products that contain simple ingredients that you can pronounce. We also highly recommend getting a product that contains hydroxyapatite for best results.

Where Can I Purchase Hydroxyapatite Tooth Powder?

Dr. Michelle Jorgensen sells three different types of hydroxyapatite tooth powder that were created with your dental and overall health in mind. You can purchase them in her online shop. Click below to check them out!

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