What is Hydroxyapatite and How Does it Work?

by Justin Bernhaut on July 22, 2022

Try Jack N’ Jill Kids Tooth Sparkles with Hydroxyapatite.

Ever heard of hydroxyapatite? Likely not, and yet this mouthful-of-a-word is a real hero ingredient in helping you and your family sport a healthy smile naturally. 

We’ve all heard of fluoride in tooth care, and now it’s time you get to know hydroxyapatite. It’s the trending dentist-approved ingredient that’s making headlines as it’s proven to be a top natural alternative to fluoride because it’s just as effective, if not superior and completely non-toxic (there’s something to smile about).

The best bit? When we say natural, we mean - it’s completely natural and essential – in fact, hydroxyapatite is a type of calcium that makes up 97% of your tooth enamel. Interested? Thought so, read on to discover everything you need to know about hydroxyapatite and how you can incorporate it into your and your family’s dental care routine stat.

What is Hydroxyapatite?

Hydroxyapatite is a form of calcium that makes up the majority of our teeth and bones. It’s white in colour and is the star in giving our teeth and bones their strength and hardness. Thanks to its white colouring, hydroxyapatite is the one to thank for pearly white teeth – it’s the main component of the tooth enamel which gives off a bright white appearance.

How can Hydroxyapatite help your teeth?

When it comes to teeth, hydroxyapatite was first used in tooth care by NASA in 1970 to help repair astronauts’ teeth enamel once they had returned from space. Why? Scientists found astronauts' teeth needed remineralising as the effects of gravity had depleted their body’s calcium and shown up in their mouth. This is where Hydroxyapatite came in.

Hydroxyapatite helped their teeth become smoother, harder and stronger after use by remineralising their teeth (remineralising means it helps restore the depleted minerals on teeth). The rest is history, with the first hydroxyapatite toothpaste developed in 1978 in Japan and marketed as a Japanese toothpaste that heals cavities. Since then, the world has caught on to this wonder mineral, and now dentists highly recommend hydroxyapatite in dental care worldwide for the following benefits (& more): 

  • Prevent and heal tooth cavities.
  • To provide an essential source of calcium and phosphate to teeth.
  • Remineralise teeth.
  • Rebuild tooth enamel.
  • Support sensitive teeth.
  • As a safe material for dental implants.

Fluoride or hydroxyapatite?

Selecting natural alternatives such as xylitol or hydroxyapatite for teeth cleaning reduces the risk of exposing your child to toxins and developing conditions such as fluorosis. Fluorosis is caused by too much fluoride in the body and can cause severe aesthetic and structural defects in teeth. This is one of the many reasons toothpaste containing fluoride warns against swallowing and recommends spitting, which can be near impossible with little ones as a parent.

All Jack N' Jill Kids toothpaste is fluoride-free, explore the range here.

Is Hydroxyapatite Safe for Kids’ teeth?

For kids today, sugary food and drinks are far too easily available and keeping pesky plaque at bay from sugar, as a result, can be a real problem for parents. Thankfully a study in 2019 found that a concentration of 10% hydroxyapatite was just as effective as fluoride in tooth care for children in preventing and reversing tooth decay.

So, when looking to reduce the risk of enamel erosion of your little one’s teeth reach for a hydroxyapatite toothpaste or a hydroxyapatite formula such as Jack N’ Jill Kids Tooth Sparkles for good oral health. Jack N’ Jill Kids Tooth Sparkles reduce the risk of enamel erosion occurring, support teeth remineralisation and maintain your child’s pearly white grin (that you love so much). Plus, if they need convincing... tell them hydroxyapatite is what astronauts use to clean their teeth!

Just like our toothpaste, Jack N' Jill Kids Tooth Sparkles are also packed with xylitol for teeth cleaning and designed to be chewed/crushed and swallowed on the go, like after lunch at daycare or school. Of course, they are naturally free from sugar, nuts, gluten and artificial sweeteners.

Is There Much Research on Hydroxyapatite?

Hydroxyapatite (HA) is one of the most studied biomaterials in the medical field for the human body.

Why? Because of its top-notch preventative, restorative and regenerative abilities – we want to find more ways to use the mineral. Research has shown that hydroxyapatite's many unique properties make it a go-to for surgery on the face, jaw and teeth—surgeries such as periodontology, maxillofacial and orthopaedic. The mineral's ability to bond to bone and not induce inflammation or toxicity makes it a real winner.

As for additives, hydroxyapatite makes up 97% of our tooth enamel, almost 70% of our teeth dentin and 40% of our bones – it's something already naturally provided by our body, unlike fluoride.

How is Hydroxyapatite Sourced?

Hydroxyapatite can be safely created synthetically, which is invaluable to dentistry. Alternatively, there are ways to extract hydroxyapatite from natural sources such as animal or marine bones or vegan sources such as coconut, seashells, plants and limestone. We proudly source hydroxyapatite for the Jack N' Jill Tooth Sparkles synthetically as naturally occurring hydroxyapatite ingredients have not been investigated in oral care or hold enough research - plus... animal bones for teeth cleaning, eew!.

How can you add Hydroxyapatite into your Kids Dental Routine?

Are you brushing your kid's teeth twice a day for two minutes? Likely not – according to a recent Jack N' Jill Kids study that found 53% of parents don't think or are unsure that their kids brush their teeth twice a day. We're not here to guilt but rather help by putting a little sparkle into kids' dental routines with our Jack N Jill Kids Tooth Sparkles.

They're a genius way to clean children's teeth in between brushing that are party packed with hydroxyapatite to remineralise their teeth. These chews seriously make teeth cleaning a breeze, even for the fussiest children, with their delicious natural strawberry flavour. Plus, they're safe for littlies as young as two years to use.


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