Pumice is a lightweight igneous rock that is a cool and hard form of the solidified lava.
This rock falls under the glass category as it possesses no structure like crystal or mineral abilities.
This pumice is extracted from the silica lava of the volcanic rock after it cools down following a volcanic eruption.
This produces the ashes that usually float on the water after it cools down.
The pumice is a cleaning agent and is available in different forms like liquid, powder, and gel.
Use of pumice in the field of dentistry
Most dental labs and clinics, pumice powder is widely used as teeth cleaning product and helps in whitening teeth, dentures and dental prostheses.
The pumice is an active ingredient in most of the cleaning products such as hand soap, polishes, and cleaners.
Pumice is a well known dental cleaner as it is rich in abrasive properties.
This is because pumice can offer the best cleansing action by exerting deep cleansing in the teeth and also has the ability to kill bacteria present in the teeth thereby preventing it from affecting the gums.
It is the most recommended aid in cleaning and polishing the dentures made of acrylic. It is also used as a slurry foam by the dentists to obtain a smooth finish to the teeth.
It is also widely used in whitening toothpastes, teeth polishers and in prophylaxis process.
How pumice cleans your teeth?
The abrasive texture of pumice makes it an ideal choice for polishing the smooth surface of teeth.
Though the enamel, which is the outer layer of the teeth is very hard in nature, it can get scratched, dented or pitted which can make build up tartar and plaque much easier as the surface has lost its smooth nature.
When the tooth is polished using pumice, it can eradicate the bacteria and plaque buildup that can make the surface of the teeth very smooth.
Pumice can also get rid of mild and tough stains on the surface of teeth owing to the food and drinks you consume every day.
Pumice is also effective in cleaning the discolored teeth that are a result of too much smoking.
Dental professionals often use pumice to lean your teeth and to restore its shine. It is also highly useful in offering an excellent finish to false teeth or dentures.
Types of pumice used in dentistry
The best type of pumice that is used in teeth whitening is usually available along with the label, “cleaning quality”. These stones are very soft and have less tendency to scratch or damage any tooth’s surface.
Cosmetic grade pumice stones are also available for dental purposes, but it is used only in professional grade dental products.
These stones are very soft in nature and hence when ground, they can turn into a fine powder.
Usually, pumice is used in the field of dentistry with the recommended dosages of:
- Fine pumice powder – 3/0
- Medium pumice powder – 2/0
- Coarse pumice powder – 1/0
Apart from these forms of pumice, pumice with slight acidity is also used for microabrasion procedure as it can clear dark marks, stains and other dark marks that might have developed over a few years time.
The process of teeth whitening dates back to 4000 years ago when Egyptians used a first whitening toothpaste that comprises of pumice stone and wine vinegar with the help of a rudimentary toothbrush.
These days the in-office procedure of teeth whitening would have the dentist performing the whitening process using a pumice mixture after initiating a process to put a protective barrier on your gums.
Benefits of using Pumice in dentistry
When pumice is used in a dental laboratory set up, patients can highly benefit from this substance as it offers a deep cleaning experience to their teeth and also helps in cleaning other items of dental care.
Pumice also fights the bacteria found on the surface of the teeth, which is normally not visible to the human eye.
When you use teeth whitening product and toothpastes with pumice as its main ingredient coupled together with a flavoring agent, it can offer you clean teeth that are whiter and brighter.
Precautions while using a pumice
- Contaminated pumice can trigger various infections and skin diseases caused by bacteria and fungi.
- Sometimes, contaminated pumice can also cause sickness in the pelvic region, irritation in the gums and soreness when used for teeth whitening.
- Always make sure that pumice is used for teeth whitening in the controlled dental environment.
- Make sure that all your teeth whitening products that contain pumice is not beyond the expiry date to stay safe from using contaminated ones.
When you are using pumice for whitening your teeth make sure that you remember these precautions to have shinier and whiter teeth!