BPA (Bisphenol A) in Dental Sealants and Fillings

Much uproar has surfaced about BPA contained in plastics and in dental materials.

Baby bottles and other plastic bottles are notorious for containing the synthetic harmful substance that has been known to cause problems in the body. More specifically, BPA looks a lot like the hormone estrogen and when the body recognizes it…. well, things just go haywire.

Dental sealants and some composite fillings (plastic or white fillings) contain BPA as a product or as a by-product.

We are aware of such an issue and have done our best to select dental composite fillings and dental sealants that don’t include bisphenol-A nor contain compounds that make bisphenol-A.

In studies done approximately 10 years ago showed that BPA can be found in the saliva after 10 minutes of placing it.  However, that brand of dental sealant hasn’t been used in years and currently, dental sealant manufacturers are aware of the issue and have stopped using BPA (but check with your dentist for sure.  If he or she is not aware of the issue, then it might be time to change dentists).  

If a dentist told me that my children should have sealants, they better put sealants that don’t have BPA.

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  1. Stephen Says: June 29, 2015 at 3:00 pm

    Dr. Marvin,

    I just went to a new dentist to get some new acrylic dentures since my old ones cracked.

    At first, this dentist seemed unsure if his dentures were BPA-free. I asked him the name of the company who provides him the acrylic dentures–he hesitated to give me this information–he said acrylic denture was “under his name.”

    How do I contact his supplier of acrylic dentures to make sure it is free of BPA,Bis-GMA and Bis-DMA–I have the right to know this information, RIGHT?

    Thank you.

  2. Hector Says: May 6, 2015 at 5:30 pm

    No composite contains BPA. they contain BPA derivatives. saliva and enzymes can degrade them back into BPA. Composites degrade and release BPA byproducts through time and they can be absorbed through the mucosal membranes and ingested which even in very low quantities can have adverse health effects.

    As you can see from the ADA study, composites claiming that are free of BPA are not necessarily so. Venus for example, seems deceptive when it claims to not have BPA nor bis-GMA yet it doesn’t reveal that it does contains bis-EDMA which caused it to release the highest BPA levels of all composites. http://www.ada.org/en/publications/ada-professional-product-review-ppr/archives/2014/july/determination-of-bisphenol-a-released-from-resin-based-dental-composite-restoratives

  3. Rosemary Says: July 16, 2012 at 2:54 pm

    Dentistry, in my opinion, is the only profession that still practices in the dark ages.

  4. Dr.Sarah Fallon Says: March 30, 2011 at 8:29 am

    Dear Dr. Marvin, I have just been reading about the dangers of BPA in composite fillings. You mentioned that you had found a few that do not contain this compound or bisGMA or bisDMA. I would very much appreciate the names of the companies who manufacture this type of composite. I do not wish to endanger any of my patients and would appreciate your help in finding alternatives. Thanks, Sarah E Fallon, DMD

    • Thanks Dr. Fallon, I’m glad you’re showing interest… your patients will appreciate it! I actually just published a list of the materials I use and put it on our Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/NaturalDentistry. I encourage you to download it and share it with your patients. By no means is it all-inclusive or is every product perfect, but it’s a list of products we have found to be “safe” in dentistry.

  5. Hello Dr. Marvin, I called your office to find out what materials you use for dental composites. This way I, the patient, am empowered to know and first approve of what is going into my dental filings. Currently, I have tons of mercury amalgam that needs to be replaced.

    I have a scientific background and I believe I have a right to first now what is being used (the chemical composition of the dental composite materials and resins) before signing up with you or any dentist.

    Sasja said declined to answer the question and said that information was “proprietary.”

    I am perplexed by her answer.

    Thanks for your willingness to have an open conversation about this matter via your website.

    I look forward to your reply. Thanks.

    • Sorry about that Deborah. I think Sasja misunderstood your question and didn’t realize it was on a technical level. We often get patients who believe that dental materials are just one “ingredient” and they call to ask what ours are made of. We typically tell them its a proprietary blend of ingredients. I am more than happy to share the MSDS sheets for any of the materials we use in our practice.

      To answer your question, I need a little more information. We aren’t a one-size-fits-all practice and, as a result, have several different composites (as well as inlay materials, crown materials, bonding agents, etc.) to choose from. Perhaps the best way is to give us a call back on Monday (I have the MSDS sheets at the office and we’re closed on the weekend) and ask to either speak with me or with Jared, our office manager. We would be happy to walk you through it and make sure you get the information you need. If you have to leave a message, I’ll make sure one of us gets back to you promptly.

      Sorry for any inconvenience. Most patients just don’t want to know every ingredient that’s in a composite, so it’s not a question we get often over the phone. My apologies.
      Dr. Marvin

  6. What are the names of the BPA free composites?

    • There are a couple of different companies out there and I don’t know all the names off the top of my head. The thing to remember is that if you’re looking for a truly BPA-free composite, you also want it to be Bis-GMA and Bis-DMA free as they are derivatives of BPA and have similar effects. Further, you have to take into consideration the bonding agents, sealants, cement, bite guards, partial dentures, etc. If you’re looking to be truly BPA-free, these are all considerations.

  7. Mom of Two Says: February 2, 2010 at 9:57 am

    What was your answer to the previous writer who asked for BPA free dental fillings? Are the CEREC 3D ceramic fillings safe? Anyone you recommend in the San Francisco area?

    • There are a few different products that are truly BPA-free. Most are very new products and there is limited research done on them. The best recommendation I can make is that you talk to dentists you would be interested in seeing and find out if they have BPA-free composites available (and yes, we do have such fillings available in our practice).

      Remember that just because a filling is BPA-free does not mean it’s the right choice for your body. Yes, it is believed that BPA is toxic, but those BPA-free fillings may also contain ingredients that are not bio-compatible with YOUR body and actually cause adverse health problems. That’s why we always offer bio-compatibility testing — we want to ensure we use the right filling for your body (we offer a variety of filling materials because we understand that it isn’t “one size fits all” when it comes to your health).

      As far as providing a reference in other areas of the country: we would definitely prefer that you come see us (we actually have several patients from the SF Bay Area as well as patients from Canada, New York, South Carolina, Mexico, South America, Australia, and more) and I haven’t yet found another dentist that provides as comprehensive a service as we offer. If you are set on finding a local dentist, I would encourage you to check out http://www.IAOMT.org and take a look at their “find a dentist” tool. Start there and call the dentists to ensure they offer everything you’re looking for.

  8. ShilpalVinay Says: October 26, 2009 at 12:31 pm

    Hi Dr Marvin
    I am franticaly seraching for a BPA free composite filling for my son aged 3.5 years.I did see that you said earlier that there are BPA free ones.Kindly advice.We stay in Pennsylvania.

    Regards

  9. It seems like a step in the right direction. Thank you of the link.

  10. Thomas Ford Says: August 3, 2009 at 1:30 am

    I found the following site that describes a promising composite that does not use bis-GMA:
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090525115400.htm

  11. Even if some company claim their product to be BPA free most of them contain Bis-Gma, Bis-Dma or similar compound that can be degraded in BPA at some point during the life of the product. Even if decomposition into BPA is not happening those composite and sealants can leach Bis-Gma or other compounds that have oestrogenic and other questionable properties. So if someone know a truly BPA free solution for composite fillings, let me know please because I haven’t found one.

  12. If my dentist had not heard of the problems of BPA then I don’t think they should be practising, I really don’t think their would be any who have not done so as all the old school dentists will have known about this when the tests where carried out and advised and the new dentists will have surely been made aware of this when going through Dental collage.

    • I completely understand what you’re saying. Unfortunately, many dentists still aren’t aware of it (or they claim to not know). It’s similar to mercury fillings: the links between mercury and problems with the nervous system are well documented, yet most dentists still place mercury fillings and many claim that fillings made from more than 50% mercury are harmless.

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