Molar incisive hypomineralization overtakes tooth decay
Already 30 percent of the 12 year olds are affected by the so-called molar incisional hypomineralization (MIH). In children and adolescents in terms of frequency of this tooth disease has already overtaken caries and is thus regarded as a widespread disease. Despite massive prevalence, there is much uncertainty about this condition, which suggests that dietary plasticisers may be the cause. With proper prophylaxis, MIH affected teeth can last a lifetime.
In a press conference of the German Society of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (DGZMK), Prof. Dr. med. Norbert Krämer recently presented the latest distribution figures and treatment options for MIH. Krämer warns that MIH has undergone rapid development. Since the first appearance in 1987, the dental disease has developed to today a veritable widespread disease. On average, ten to 15 percent of children suffer from tooth disease. According to the German Oral Health Study DMS V even twelve percent of the twelve year olds are affected.
Chalk Teeth – What is MIH?
Discolored and crumbling children’s teeth need not be caries. MIH is a systemic disorder that affects the structure of the enamel. Disruption of mineralization causes structural anomaly. The permanent molars, the so-called molars, are often affected. The diseased teeth are then popularly referred to as “chalk teeth”, which is due to the increased sensitivity to pain and reduced strength. In addition, such teeth are very sensitive to heat, cold and external influences such as brushing teeth.
Plasticizers are suspected as a cause
Plastics softeners such as bisphenol A are suspected to cause this disease. They are present in numerous foods. In animal experiments, the connection could already be demonstrated. According to Krämer, further potential causes of MIH are pregnancies, infectious diseases, the use of antibiotics, chickenpox, dioxin and respiratory diseases. However, the exact causes are currently considered insufficiently scientifically understood.
Proper prophylaxis can protect you
MIH affected teeth are more likely to be affected by tooth decay. With proper prophylaxis, the preservation of such teeth can still be secured. At the press conference, Prof. dr. Stefan Zimmer, President of the German Society for Preventive Dentistry, states that MIH teeth have a rougher surface and a lower quality of the substance. This results in a special susceptibility to tooth decay. Therefore, beyond the brushing of teeth, a particularly intensive prophylaxis must be carried out in order to protect the teeth from caries, so that a radiant smile can be maintained through proper dental care.
In particular, Professor Zimmer recommends fluoridation, which should be performed both at the dentist and at home, as a suitable prophylaxis. Regular checkup with the dentist, treatment with fluoride varnish and the construction of the teeth with different techniques can according to Zimmer contribute to maintaining also MIH-affected teeth with good care for a lifetime.
Clinically, the different manifestations of MIH diseased teeth. While in some patients only individual cusps of the teeth are affected, the mineralization disorder in others extends over the entire tooth surface. In the mild form often white-yellowish or yellow-brown areas show up to brown spots on the teeth. In the severe form also show chipped or missing enamel or even a broken tooth.
Dangers to the Dental Health: Chalk Teeth a Stronger Problem Than Previously thought