About Me

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Deep South, United States
Consultant, inventor, mentor, chess coach,. Current projects involve No Till Farming and staving off blindness due to cataracts among other projects. I also do confidential ghost writing (without taking any published credit. My current blindness makes me put this on hold for a while. I should have one eye working again in about four months. Fact, fiction, all subjects considered. I have heard My daughter Jennifer is alive. I would love it if she were to contact me here. I understand she would like to know me. I have sent a message by circuitous route. I can only hope. My posted Email works as well. We have four decades to catch up on.

This blog has been up for more than a year. The intent was to generate dialogues about serious problems and ideas. It has been almost exclusively a monologue. I have not been looking for large numbers of participants.

I would be quite happy with a few dozen imaginative, creative, thoughtful and inventive people who wish to address serious problems and issues. If anyone has any ideas about how to attract such a talented group I will certainly pay attention. I am not as computer conversant as I would wish. Anyone who could help in this regard would find me receptive to sharing my skills in other areas.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Broken Fang

This post is about the upper right canine tooth. The thread "Biting the Dentist" is about a bridge on the lower jaw on the same side. The front tooth on the bridge which recently gave me some trouble that I have included in that thread is the lower canine, right below the tooth which is the subject of this thread.

About three weeks ago, about half of the posterior face of this tooth broke off, a ^ shaped segment which extended up to the gum line. No pain whatsoever attended this incident.

My sole concern was that this tooth takes a lot of ripping and chewing action, and that the structural integrity, the strength of the tooth, was probably sharply reduced, increasing the likelyhood of further breakage.

Perhaps a simple mercury amalgam filling could restore much of the strength of the tooth. I suppose that would cost 1 or 2 hundred dollars in total. Or even a plastic filling which would be more aesthetically pleasing, might also provide some additional structural support. Such a plastic filling would be a two component material, the plastic ingredients and a catalyst.

If I was guessing, I would say that the catalyst might be very similar to that used for an ordinary polyester resin; methyl ethyl ketone peroxide (MEKP) in some reduced strength form.

The trouble is, this dental material is entirely unavailable to me. I not only can't find it, it may be illegal for me to purchase it or use it myself. If I were able to acquire it, I could very likely make a filling that might last six months to ten years, or even for life.

What IS available to me are "temporary" fillings, specifically designed to self-destruct in a very short period of time. They are a one-component product. By comparison to a dentist, they are quite economical. Almost 2g for about three dollars. And if I am not too wasteful, this is enough for four or five fillings. Now, less than $1 per filling is not bad, unless you factor in that these fillings are DESIGNED with deliberately "planned obsolescence" in mind. They WILL begin eroding on the very first day applied.

Let us look at the ingredients of the first one I tried. Zinc Oxide Powder, Calcium Sulfate, Petroleum Jelly, Potassium Alum, Paraffin,Aluminum Sulphate, Aluminum Phosphate, Menthol Crystals, Eugenol, Yellow Iron Oxide.

By weight, the third and fifth most abundant ingredient, PETROLEUM JELLY and PARAFFIN are an oil and a wax. Given several hours to set, this material gives the impression that it is a solid, but in no sense does it confer any structural integrity or strength to the tooth. The engineers of this tooth repair material WANT IT TO BREAK DOWN in less than a week in a typical cavity. In my particular case, the broken portion of the tooth is a load-bearing surface. I can expect to get a day or two out of it, or three if I don't chew. I am fond of chewing.

Even the eugenol is from Oil of Clove, but at least it has an anesthetic purpose.

Now let's look at the other product I found. This one costs an extra thirty cents and is perhaps a smidgen better.
Ingredients: Zinc Oxide B.P., Calcium Sulphate, Synthetic Plasticizer, Potassium Sulphate, Glass Ionomer.

You might get an extra day or two of use out of this one, but it too is DESIGNED TO BREAK DOWN VERY QUICKLY. (This package reads "10x Longer Lasting." Perhaps they mean compared to using chewing gum.)

Now here is the punchline. Both of these products are have the same Brand Name on them. The first one is made in Italy. The second one is made in the USA and packaged in Vietnam. Both carry the same Information phone number. I am not even going to go into the absolute silliness in their directions for use (both products).

Both fillings are complete crap. I will have to make my own, but I will wait until I use these up. (Probably less than a month, even though I will tinker with them a bit to try to extend the product life a bit.)

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