From what I've understood from what I've read (which might be wrong), enamel rods extend away from the dentin in our teeth. As young people grow, the rods are thickened.

What are the technical limitations and/or problems/challenges of trying to extend/grow the rods/crystals while the teeth are in the mouth?

One issue I guess could be that the enamel is porous, and so chemicals could affect the other parts of the teeth.

But one example of trying to improve the quality of tooth enamel is Novamin, which some manufacturers have claimed creates a glass on the tooth. But I don't understand what that means.


1 Answer 1


Chandra's Textbook of Dental and Oral Histology and Embryology with MCQs p40-42 explains the complexity of enamel, and provides diagrams and images of real enamel.

What I didn't know before was that the hydroxyapatite is in the form of very small crystallites packed inside the key-like structure of the rods. The rods are packed together with a cement-like material. The rods themselves are segmented.

This small design and lack of vital parts suggest to me that bioglasses like Novamin would at least not recreate the natural enamel structure.

What isn't so easy to guess is whether crystallites from the components of the bioglass are formed on the existing crystallites, and if so, whether this can continue indefinitely, and with what qualities.


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