Image credit: PixabayImage credit: PixabayAlthough there are several remedies for tooth sensitivity on the market, researchers believe they have created a material that will treat the condition for longer periods than currently available products.

Tooth sensitivity is often the result of the wearing away of protective tooth enamel to expose a bony tissue called dentin. Dentin, with its microscopic hollow tubes, exposes nerve endings in teeth, which, when in contact with hot and cold foods and beverages, can result in pain. Additionally, exposed dentin leaves teeth vulnerable to the development of biofilm, which can result in cavities.

Cui Huang and his team of researchers have developed a material that would both treat tooth sensitivity and prevent the formation of biofilm on the exposed dentin.

Using nanohydroxyapatite (a mineral used to plug the microscopic tubes in dentin) in combination with a green tea polyphenol—epigallocatechin-3-gallate, or EGCG—researchers tested the material on extracted wisdom teeth and determined that the low toxicity material both plugged the dentin tubes and prevented the formation of biofilm making the material a good candidcate for treating tooth sensitivity and preventing cavities.

The research is published in the journal ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces.