Tooth sensitivity is caused by erosion of the tooth’s protective enamel layer, which leaves underlying “dentin” exposed. This hard, dense, bony tissue, which forms the majority of the tooth’s mass, contains small tubes (“microtubes”) that are empty inside. When outer ends of these tubes are exposed, they allow hot and cold foods and liquids to travel directly to the center of the tooth where the nerve resides, causing pain. While current treatments involve using a material called “nanohydroxyapatite” to block the openings in the microtubes, it is often scrubbed away by brushing. Fortunately, researchers have discovered that by adding a compound found in green tea called “epigallocatechin-3-gallate” (EGCG) to “mesoporous silica nanoparticles” (MSN), they can effectively block dentin’s microtubes.
A very good lesson to remember is that prevention is key to optimum dental health. Through good habits like choosing a dental-friendly diet and proper brushing and flossing, you have a lot of control over your dental health. One of the most important services we offer at West Brookfield Dental is a plan for preventive dental care, including counseling on nutrition, the proper way to brush and floss, and recommendations for oral hygiene products and how to use them. For an appointment, please call us at 508.867.2777, 9 West Main St., West Brookfield.
P.S. Previous studies have shown that epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), the most active polyphenol in green tea, can effectively battle S. mutans (the bacteria that cause tooth decay).