But while you might not immediately connect car bumpers with fillings, or with biocompatibility, for that matter, I was intrigued to see that some researchers had done just that. They have taken thiourethane, a polymer used to toughen bumper rubber, as a starting point and developed a new material, with an adhesive, that together promise to resist cracking and bacterial degradation better than present materials. And that promises longer life for the fillings. I’ll be watching this product’s development with interest! Read all about it here.
The mouth is a tough environment, and it’s a sad truth that fillings, even with the best care, are not likely to last longer than a decade. Modern filling materials are pretty good, though, and any advances have to meet ever more rigorous biocompatibility criteria before they can be accepted. And to make things harder, any new material must come with its own adhesive, and that’s got to be biocompatible, too.