ANALYSIS OF REMINERALIZING CHEWING GUM CONTAINING BIOACTIVE GLASS – A SCANNING ELECTRON MICROSCOPIC STUDY
The objective of this study was to identify components and distribution of bioactive (BAG) particles in remineralizing chewing gum by using scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Bioactive glass containing SiO2-P2O5-CaO-Na2O-CaF2 was prepared by melt quench route and the obtained powdered glass was mixed with a chewing gum base. The chewing gum either had 2.5% or 5% bioactive glass. Manual chewing was done for 10 mins by immersing the chewing gum in tris-buffer in a nitrile glove cut finger and applying steady pressure with fingers of one hand. The chewed gum specimens after freezing with liquid nitrogen were observed under SEM and its composition was determined with energy-dispersive x-ray spectroscopy (EDS). By using SEM/EDS the various elements such as calcium, oxygen, fluoride, phosphate, carbonate and silica were identified in gum base containing BAG. Moreover, the glass particles were randomly distributed in gum base before and after chewing. The glass particles dissolved in tris-buffer solution release ions after chewing which might have tendency to form fluorapatite (FAP) important for remineralization. These particles are randomly distributed in chewing gum base though further studies are warranted with refinement.