Taking the Drill Out of Dental Visits with Silver Diamine Fluoride
In February of this year, Health Canada approved the use of Advantage Arrest® (Silver Diamine Fluoride) for use by dental professionals in the prevention and treatment of decay- cavities. Interestingly, silver diamine fluoride is not a recent discovery!!
This game changing treatment has been in use for many years in Japan, Australia and Argentina. The important question is how silver diamine fluoride treats cavities without requiring a dental drill to remove rotten, sticky, invasive tooth decay? Instead of a dental drill that mechanically removes the infected areas of the tooth, silver diamine fluoride kills cavity-causing bacteria while remineralizing-hardening the affected areas of the tooth. Advantage Arrest® professionally applied directly onto the ‘decayed’ or ‘rotten’ tooth surfaces. The good news is that neither local anaesthesia (‘freezing’), nor drilling are required. Thereafter should area(s) of the tooth require rebuilding, this can be easily managed with a conventional white filling.
In addition, when silver diamine fluoride is applied to a tooth, it exerts a ‘Zombie Effect.’ Cavity-causing bacteria impregnanted with silver ion spread the cavity arresting effect to bacteria elsewhere thereby extending the area of decay protection. So what’s the catch you may ask? Silver diamine fluoride does stain the cavity region of the tooth a dark brown or black colour. This has been the greatest drawback hindering it’s widespread use and why silver diamine fluoride is typically suggested for children or the elderly who may not be able to undergo extensive dental treatment. Instead of requiring these groups to be treated under general anaesthesia, silver diamine fluoride represents a far less invasive and cost effective solution. It is very exciting that in my practice such an innovative and predictable approach is now possible to manage decay. Naturally, due to silver diamine fluoride’s staining effect, this treatment doesn’t entirely replace the need for fillings. Nevertheless, Advantage Arrest® has revolutionized dental care. A proven alternative to treating decay painlessly is now available! To learn more about this exciting new approach to dental care, simply call to schedule an appointment with Dr. Sari Novack.
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