Study Reveals Tooth Enamel Structure Composition
A University of Sydney research team has produced detailed 3D maps of the composition of tooth enamel. While we have known for some time that enamel is the hardest substance in the human body and that its strength comes from a complex hierarchical structure that includes magnesium, carbonate and fluoride ions, this is the first in-depth and detailed look at what the composition of that structure is.
Findings of this Study
Two major findings are exciting the dental community. First, there is now direct evidence that an amorphous magnesium-rich calcium phosphate phase may determine (to some degree) how teeth are formed. Second, organic material was also found in the structure, suggesting that proteins occur in patterns throughout the enamel, not just in the interfaces as we used to think.
What does this mean for endodontists?
Tooth enamel is the first line of defense when it comes to teeth and their roots. Once the enamel is compromised, decay starts to take place and, if left untreated (as you know), the infection may spread to the tooth’s roots, landing you in one of our chairs for root canal therapy. That is why we, as endodontists, want your enamel to stay healthy and strong for as long as possible!
What does this mean for patients?
The impact of this could be great down the road. This type of detailed information will allow dentists and other scientists and researchers to better determine what is going on inside the enamel of your teeth before, during and after decay.
Potentially…yes! New treatments and prevention strategies for dental health are always on being made, thanks to ground-breaking research and studies such as this.
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