Toothpaste ingredient repairs teeth while you sleep
A new toothpaste technology, known as
BioMin, is designed to replace minerals lost from tooth enamel,
working while the user sleeps to prevent decay. Available to dentists
as a toothpaste called BioMinF, and set to be marketed to consumers
in the near future, the product is long-acting, and also tackles
Dental decay and sensitivity is extremely prevalent, with some 42 percent of children between the ages of 2 and 11 affected by it, and a whopping 92 percent of adults between 20 and 64 having to deal with it at some point.
A new toothpaste called BioMinF, based on research from the Queen Mary University of London and Imperial College London, aims to tackle dental decay through a slow release of calcium, phosphate and fluoride ions. Whereas normal toothpastes wear off after only a couple of hours, BioMin pastes work for 8-12 hours after brushing, with the flouride – which is resistant to the acid found in things like soft drinks – forming a protective layer over the enamel.
The calcium and phosphate do even more, working with the saliva in the mouth and combining to form a new mineral that's able to strengthen and rebuilt the tooth structure. Sensitivity is tackled by forming a barrier over open tubules, which provide access to open nerves. The BioMin tech seals off the nerves, lowering sensitivity, particularly to hot and cold food and drink.
Interestingly, the new sensitivity and decay-tackling toothpaste tech could, according to the team behind it, also appear in other dental hygiene products.
"The technology behind BioMin is not however exclusively designed for toothpastes," said the company's chief scientific officer Professor Robert Hill. "It can also be incorporated in other professionally applied dental products such as cleaning and polishing pastes, varnishes and remineralizing filling materials."
BioMin Technologies – the company behind the breakthrough ingredient – is aiming to commercialise the development of the product, with a fluoride-free version also in the works. The BioMinF toothpaste is available to dentists via wholesalers right now, priced at £5 (US$7) for a 75 ml tube. For everyone else, you can expect the new paste to be on store shelves by the end of the year.