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A Journal on Dentistry and Maxillofacial Surgery
Minerva Stomatologica 2014 May;63(5):179-88
language: English, Italian
Effects of fluorotherapy on oral changes caused by a vegan diet
Zotti F. 1, 2, Laffranchi L. 2, Fontana P. 2, Dalessandri D. 2, 3, Bonetti S. 2 ✉
1 Department of Clinical and Biological Sciences, University of Turin, Turin, Italy;
2 Department of Medical and Surgical Specialties, Radiological Sciences and Public Health, Dental School, University of Brescia, Brescia, Italy;
3 Department of Medical Surgical and Health Sciences, School of Dentistry, University of Trieste, Trieste, Italy
AIM: The aim of this paper was to investigate the effects of fluorotherapy on the oral health of subjects who had been following a vegan diet (lacking in meat and animal derivatives) for a long period of time (at least 1 year and 6 months).
METHODS: A preliminary study (t0) evaluated 50 subjects, all from northern Italy and aged 24-60 years (28 male and 22 female) who had been following a vegan diet for a minimum of 18 months to a maximum of 20 years, and compared them with a control group of 50 individuals following a Mediterranean diet. All vegan subjects showed oral changes such as white spots, lesions invisible to the naked eye and decreased salivary pH values (~5-6). In a second study (t1), the 50 vegan subjects were randomly divided into two subgroups of 25. Subgroup SG1 underwent fluorotherapy with sodium fluoride (Elmex fluoride gel® 1.25%) administered once daily for 1 year. Subgroup SG2 served as controls and did not receive fluorotherapy. The following parameters were recorded before the start of fluorotherapy and again after 1 year: salivary pH; Decayed, Missing, Filled teeth Index; presence and location of white spots and lesions not visible to the naked eye; Plaque Index, and Gingival Index.
RESULTS: In SG1, larger lesions became smaller in diameter and small lesions disappeared, a statistically significant improvement compared with SG2, despite the persistence of restricted eating habits and the oral hygiene conditions being similar to those at t0. Salivary pH showed no significant change in either subgroup.
CONCLUSION: Daily application of a topical 1.25% fluoride gel is effective in reducing the incidence of white spot lesions caused by a vegan diet.