Thursday, July 14, 2016

New anti-cavity solution for kids

I remember getting fluoride goo smeared on my teeth as a child--and getting it for my daughter.

Now, according to Catherine St. Louis, NYT, July 11, 2016, a liquid called silver diamine fluoride (SDF), used for decades in Japan, is available in the US as Advantage Arrest.

It's been cleared by the FDA for use as a tooth desensitizer for adults 21 and older. But studies show it can also halt cavities and prevent them--and some dentists use it off-label for that purpose.

No drill, no injections--it is welcomed by Medicaid patients and taught at 18 dental schools.

A prominent dentist from the NY University College of Dentistry urged parents to ask about it.

Many insurers still won't cover it, but it is pretty cheap--$25 a tooth to stop a cavity without drilling at a private dentist, pennies per app in a clinic..

Nearly one-fourth of preschoolers have cavities--some of which must be treated in the hospital under anesthesia.

One drawback: It can stain the teeth. This is not too much of an issue in kids whose baby teeth will fall out.

Might be worth asking about.

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