Engineers at Oregon State University (OSU) in US have made some promising findings about the ability of 'bioactive' glass to help reduce the ability of bacteria to attack composite tooth fillings.
An average person uses their teeth for more than 600,000 'chews' a year, and some studies suggest the average lifetime of a posterior dental composite is only six years.
"Bioactive glass, which is a type of crushed glass that is able to interact with the body, has been used in some types of bone healing for decades," said Jamie Kruzic, a professor at the OSU College of Engineering.

"This type of glass is only beginning to see use in dentistry, and our research shows it may be very promising for tooth fillings," Kruzic said. "The bacteria in the mouth that help cause cavities don't seem to like this type of glass and are less likely to colonize on fillings that incorporate it. This could have a significant impact on the future of dentistry," he said.
Bioactive glass is made with compounds such as silicon oxide, calcium oxide and phosphorus oxide, and looks like powdered glass.  It is called 'bioactive' because the body notices it is there and can react to it, as opposed to other biomedical products that are inert.

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