Curodont: Healing Interproximal Lesions without Drilling!

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Historically, we have all had small cavities in between our teeth that our dentist has told us they are “watching” because they are not large enough to drill or fill, but are present and are expected to grow with time. We are then typically asked to floss more and use fluoridated mouthwash. We may have been able to buy time and push the ball down the road for 2-3 years, before the lesion gets “big enough” that it needs to be filled.

Until recently, we have not been able to “heal” cavities in the mouth without drilling or filling. But that is set to change. There is a product on the dental market as of 2019 which is set to deliver healing to certain size lesions: Curodont by vVardis from Switzerland.

How Curodont Works

Curodont works on open surfaces of the teeth (towards the face or tongue / palate) as well as between teeth surfaces. The depth of the lesion is crucial; shallow lesions respond to treatment, while deeper lesions may not. Curodont can be used when the lesions are still within the body of the enamel and have not gotten into the dentin layer (the second internal layer of the teeth). Once the lesion is in the dentin, then it’s drill and fill time.

There is no drilling needed for Curodont though. Upon its application to a lesion, a gelatinous lattice is formed within the first five minutes which then attracts the calcium and phosphates present in the saliva of the individual, and essentially remineralizes the spots. This product can remineralize the spots to the extent that those lesions, especially if they are more superficial and still in the early stages, look partially or fully healed on X-rays. That means that the X-ray would show the lesion filling in radiographically because the minerals are going back into the demineralized site, and as such, the dark spot that shows up on X-rays to indicate cavities would look the same as the rest of the enamel on that tooth.

This process can take up to six months. It can be repeated on any given lesion with the appropriate depth.

How to Prepare for Curodont Treatment

To increase the chances of success, it is best to ensure that the mouth has lots of calcium and phosphates available in its saliva by ensuring that you use heavy toothpastes or mouthwashes. One example is MI Paste & MI Paste Plus. These are prescription strength products which we have been offering for a long time to patients with sensitivity in their teeth due to the high concentration of minerals in the product. Another example is the vVardis HA fluoride toothpaste, which we also offer to our patients.

Curodont Treatment on Orthodontic Brackets

Another application for Curodont is around orthodontic brackets in kids who are developing white spots on their teeth. Historically, we have to wait for the braces to come off and for the lesions to settle before we could do fillings for those areas. However, Curodont can be applied while the patient still has braces on, which is a vast improvement.

The other interesting fact about Curodont is that the healed site should look mostly the same as the rest of the enamel. Historically, application of silver diamine fluoride would be utilized, especially for kids, but those sites would look dark because of the silver. Curodont looks tooth-like because it is using the biomimetic principles of the remineralization process in our mouths.

Requirements and Limitations of Curodont

No whitening should be done for the first six months post-application to ensure that the gelatinous lattice does not disintegrate. You can whiten your teeth before the application is performed, though.

Another limitation is that Curodont can’t be used for chewing surface pits and fissures (for instance, on molars or premolars). Those surfaces get impacted with food constantly throughout the day, and as such the lattice won’t have the chance to remineralize the surface well enough to really help it. For those areas, we would still want to do sealants or preventive resin restorations (PRRs).

It is also worth noting that there has to be natural tooth structure in place on all the margins of the lesion for Curodont to be usable and applicable to the site. That means that decalcification or recurrent lesions around crowns, veneers, or other fillings can’t be treated at this point with this material. It is really only usable for areas where the decalcified lesion is fully on natural tooth structure in its active state.

Good news, though; it costs less than a regular filling would. Fillings usually cost $200-500/tooth. An application of Curodont would cost $150/tooth. However, it is currently not eligible for insurance benefits, since the technology and materials involved are very new.

We are proud to be providing this brand-new technology for our patients. Not many offices are offering this option for tooth restoration, but at Soothing Dental, dentist in San Francisco and Sunnyvale, we’re on the cutting edge.