Bisphenol A (BPA) is a chemical compound that is used in the composition of plastics and resins. It is currently used in the manufacturing of many brands of plastic cups, food containers and baby bottles in the United States and many other countries. Many public health officials have become concerned that exposure to BPA may cause health problems in humans, specifically: problems with reproduction and development. As a precautionary measure, Europe has prohibited the manufacturing and/or sale of baby bottles containing BPA. France will extend this ban to all food containers in 2015. As a result, a number of BPA-free products have been developed and can be found in popular retail outlets. Now there is even more concern about exposure to BPA and the possible negative effects on dental health.
A recent study published in the Journal of Pathology, suggests that exposure to BPA may harm the enamel of certain children’s teeth. The study was conducted by a team of researchers from the Université Paris-Diderot and Inserm Unite 872 “Centre des Cordeliers.” It looked at the effect of low levels of daily exposure to BPA on the tooth enamel of incisors of rats. Microscopic observation of the enamel of the incisors showed a significant reduction in Ca/P and Ca/C ratios in affected teeth making them more fragile and brittle. Analysis of the rats’ teeth showed numerous characteristics that are common with a tooth enamel pathology that selectively affects first molars and permanent incisors. This condition known as Molar Incisor Hypomineralization, (MIH), affects roughly 18% of children between the ages of six and eight.
Clearly, more research is needed on this very important topic. If you have questions about BPA exposure and your dental health, talk to your dentist today.
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