Bisphenol A: A Dental Concern for Our Patients or Not?

An important lesson that I’ve learned over the years about Biological Dentistry is to ask questions. Then to be willing to make the appropriate changes that seem necessary for improving the health and well being of our patients.

The use of specific dental materials and their biological compatibility for our patients has always been a concern for me. About 6 months ago, I was investigating a chemical used in dentistry called Bisphenol A (BPA). This is a common additive to plastics and a by-product of the chemical Bis-GMA.

Bis-GMA is an ingredient found in many dental resins or tooth colored fillings and sealants. It is also a widely used substance commonly found in plastic containers, baby bottles and the lining of metal food cans.

The problem I found with BPA is that it’s a hormone disrupter that can mimic estrogen. Some research has linked it to health consequences, including early puberty in girls, breast and prostrate cancer, and attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder.

That led me to ask: Is it safe to use in dental products? What are the experts saying about this additive that is found in most dental fillings and sealants? The following describes what I found.

The ADA (American Dental Association) believes any concern about potential BPA exposure from dental composites or sealants is unwarranted at this time. When compared with all other sources of BPA, these dental materials pose significantly lower exposure concerns. The presence of a substance, whether in the environment, human blood or urine samples, does not mean it’s necessarily harmful to human health. That would typically depend on how much of the substance we are exposed to.

Some studies have found detectable levels of BPA in the saliva of patients after use of the sealants or fillings. However, experts are divided as to whether this low exposure constitutes a health risk.

A study published in the Journal of the American Dental Association in 2006, found some dental products leach BPA and could result in low-dose exposures within the range in which health effects have been seen in rodents.

The term “low exposure” still concerns me enough that we’ve decided to eliminate this chemical from our office.

If you search enough you can find dental resins and even sealants that do not contain Bisphenol A. We use two products in our office that meet this criteria. They are from DRM called Diamond Lite (for fillings) and Diamond Crown (for crowns). They have performed quite well in regards to their strength and aesthetics. I would highly recommend these products for other dentists to try.

Even though the BPA controversy is likely to continue, biological dentistry will continue to choose the path less traveled. If you can do without toxins, why not do without toxins? If you can perform dental procedures safely and do not have to jeopardize the integrity of the product, then why even take a chance with potentially harmful products in our patients’ mouths? We believe in the “Precautionary Principle” so we simply don’t take those chances.

About Dr. Michael Rehme, DDS, CCN

Dr. Michael Rehme, DDS, CCN is one of the few Biological (Holistic) Dentists in St. Louis, MO and the U.S. that are Certified Clinical Nutritionists (CCN). He practices Biological Dentistry that includes mercury free, tooth colored fillings; healthy dental materials; balancing body chemistry; and nutritional therapy. For articles and information about Biological Dentistry (also referred to as Holistic Dentistry) and patient success stories visit www.toothbody.com or call his office 314-997-2550.

Attend a free monthly presentation and discussion by Dr. Rehme on Biological Dentistry the third Tuesday each month at 6:30 pm and his dentistry office in St. Louis. Please call to verify the date.

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5 Responses to Bisphenol A: A Dental Concern for Our Patients or Not?

  1. Ann November 18, 2014 at 9:12 am #

    I have had 2 major surgeries for a hormonal type cancer. I want to avoid any xenoestrogens. Please could you tell me which would be a better composite? Grandio or Diamond Lite? Also I need a permanent crown placed. Would Diamond Crown be a good choice for my situation? Please let me hear back soon.Thanks.

    • Office November 18, 2014 at 1:38 pm #

      Diamond Lite is a material we often use, along with others mentioned in our article here: http://toothbody.com/services/restorative-dentistry/

      Still, it is best to do thorough biocompatibility testing in advance – also discussed at the link above.

      • Ann November 18, 2014 at 4:48 pm #

        Thank you for your kind response. Yes, I have had the serum biocompatibility testing done already. I did test least reactive to Diamond Crown but am very worried about the xenoestrogens in plastic crowns. So the Diamond Crown would be a good choice for a cancer patient with a cancer that requires estrogen to grow? Do you use the Diamond bond/link to place the crown or do u use one of the ones that you have listed as being safest? I am grateful for your help.

  2. Catherine May 29, 2016 at 7:02 pm #

    Are the denture materials (denture teeth and Denture and partial base materials) that you list on your compatibility report bpa free? Thank you for answering my question.

    • Office June 1, 2016 at 10:07 am #

      We use only BPA-free materials (and related compounds). Here, you’ll find a list of all the chemical groups that the Clifford test covers: http://www.ccrlab.com/antigen.html.

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