Dentists May Soon be Filling Your Teeth With Glass

Hate your fillings? New findings out of Oregon State University show something promising for the war on tooth decay: Bioactive glass.

In research published in the journal Dental Materials, engineers at the university say bioactive glass (made with compounds such as silicon oxide, calcium oxide and phosphorous oxide that comes in powder form) may help reduce the ability of bacteria to attack composite tooth fillings. This would result in fillings not only lasting longer, but potentially providing the tooth with the minerals needed to replace what was lost to decay.

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While it sounds sci-fi, bioactive glass has been used in bone healing for decades; the researchers also reported that if theses lab results are confirmed by clinical research, the bioactive glass should be easy to incorporate into existing formulations for composite tooth fillings.