ALTERNATIVES TO FLUORIDE:
PART 2- MI PASTE
This is the second part of a series of blog posts on the oral health products that do not rely on fluoride. Many patients have increasing concerns about the use of fluoride. While the American Dental Association stands behind fluoride as safe and effective, it is my job as a health care professional to give each patient the information they need to make their own personal choices about oral health. Last time we discussed the anti-cavity benefits of xylitol which you can read about here. Today we will be discussing MI Paste, a tooth crème containing the minerals calcium and phosphorus. Those of you currently using fluoride products would also benefit from adding these two things to your routine, especially if you are at high risk of decay. MI Paste also works well for sensitivity.
MI Paste is one of a line of products created by GC Corporation. The MI acronym in stands for Minimal Intervention. The original MI Paste does not contain fluoride but the other products in the line, such as MI Paste Plus, do contain it. This topical crème serves like a vitamin for the teeth by supplying the minerals calcium and phosphorus in a way that can actually be taken up by the tooth enamel. Fluoride itself works by incorporating into the enamel structure making it more resilient but the fluoride-free formulations of MI Paste also show some impression results with calcium and phosphorus alone. Do be aware the crème contains casein, a milk-derived protein, and would therefore not be safe for anyone with a milk allergy. Traces of lactose are negligible. MI Paste also contains paraben preservatives.
MI Paste is indicated for several conditions. As discussed above, it provides the necessary minerals to fortify the tooth enamel and reduce the level of acidity in the mouth. This mechanism not only reduces the risk of new tooth decay, it can help reverse areas where the decay process has already started provided the depth of the lesion is minimal. Strengthening the tooth structure also helps relieve and prevent tooth sensitivity from a variety of causes such as erosion and whitening treatments. The plain MI Paste without fluoride is even safe for use in babies and toddlers to help protect newly erupted baby teeth when they are most vulnerable.
MI Paste can be applied by a dental professional or at home. The minimum amount of time on the teeth is 3 minutes. After those 3 minutes, you can remove the excess without rinsing. Do not eat or drink for 30 minutes to ensure it stays on your teeth long enough. For more intense use, your dentist can make you a custom-fitted tray to hold the paste in place overnight. Any of the crème that is swallowed would help you meet your recommended daily intake of calcium.
While you can buy MI Paste yourself on Amazon, I do recommend discussing optimum use with a dental professional. The team here at Tidewater Dental Arts would be more than happy to help and we do sell these products in the office. Together we can help you with all of your dental concerns.