From Gold “grills” to 24-karat gold plated dental retainers â€” itâ€™s clear some people like a little bling in their mouths.
But would you ever consider diamonds in your root canal?
A report from the American Chemistry Social journal Nano shows that nanodiamonds â€” which are literally microscopic diamond chips â€” have the potential to improve root canals, making them stronger and protecting them against infection.
Normally during root canals, a dentist will clear out damaged or infected pulp from deep inside a tooth and then fill that space with a rubber compound called gutta-percha.Ð’? If the patientÐ²Ð‚â„¢s tooth gets infected, or the root canal fails, another procedure is required. In order to avoid this, scientists have been experimenting with other types of filler material.
At UCLA, a team of researchers combined nanodiamonds Ð²Ð‚â€Ð’? so tiny that millions could fit on the head of the pin Ð²Ð‚â€gutta-percha and the amoxicillin antibiotic to form a new kind of filler compound.
The diamonds, the researchers said, were useful because of their â€œversatile faceted surface chemistry, biocompatibility, and their role in improving mechanical properties.â€
What did they discover?
The nanodiamond compound is stronger than plain gutta-percha, and it has the added advantage of being able to kill bacteria.
The nanodiamond root canal filler has not been tested on humans yet â€” so the juryâ€™s still out on whether the term “diamonds are forever” can be applied to teeth.