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Ditching toothbrush can help get whiter teeth and less cavities: Study

by Vaishali Sharma

When people first meet you, they notice your smile. People want healthy, dazzling white teeth so they may feel more confident when they flash wide-mouthed, eye-crinkling smiles.

Whitening methods, on the other hand, can damage enamel, creating cavities and discoloration, while toothpaste only eliminates surface stains. A novel hydrogel treatment that whitens teeth without hurting them and disintegrates cavity-forming biofilms has been found by researchers. The study’s findings were published in the journal ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces.

According to the American Dental Association, daily brushing and flossing are effective techniques to prevent cavities from developing. These treatments, however, do not properly whiten teeth. Consumers frequently seek for over-the-counter or professional treatments that mix hydrogen peroxide-containing gels and blue light, resulting in a chemical reaction that eliminates stains.

This combination eliminates the majority of the discolouration but produces reactive oxygen species that can degrade enamel. Previously, Xiaolei Wang, Lan Liao, and colleagues altered titanium dioxide nanoparticles to create a less harmful tooth-whitening procedure. This approach nevertheless necessitated the use of high-intensity blue light, which might harm adjacent skin and eyes. As a result, the researchers sought a substance that, when triggered by green light, would both whiten teeth and prevent cavities.

The researchers created a thick combination of bismuth oxychloride nanoparticles, copper oxide nanoparticles, and sodium alginate. The combination was then uniformly coated over the surface of teeth adhered to a slide before being sprayed with a calcium chloride solution, resulting in a highly adherent hydrogel.

The substance was then tested on teeth stained with coffee, tea, blueberry juice, and soy sauce and put in a lab dish. The teeth were brighter over time after treatment with the hydrogel and green light, and there was no enamel damage. Another series of trials revealed that the treatment destroyed 94% of bacteria in biofilms.

The scientists utilised the novel approach on mice whose mouths were injected with cavity-forming bacteria to demonstrate that the therapy may work on teeth in vivo. The green-light triggered hydrogel significantly prevented the formation of mild and deep cavities on the surface of the animals’ teeth. According to the researchers, its safe, brush-free method both prevents cavities and whitens teeth.

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