Could your penchant for wine make your fillings fall out?

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New research conducted by a team at the University of Pittsburgh has revealed that drinking alcoholic drinks could increase the risk of fillings coming loose.

The new study suggests that people who drink on a regular basis are more likely to lose their fillings after two years than non-drinkers. The findings were the same regardless of the material used to fill the tooth. The filling failure rate was highest among males who both drink and smoke.

Research teams from the US and Brazil used data from dental records at the University of Pittsburgh dental school to analyse and evaluate filling failure rates and ascertain potential risk factors. The data contained information linked to failure rates up to five years after the filling procedure.

Lifestyle factors were found to play a major part in the lifespan of the filling, but there was no clear difference between amalgam and composite fillings.

Alexandre Vieira, from the University of Pittsburgh, explained that detailed information about filling failure rates, individual genetics and lifestyle factors would enable dentists to draw up personalised treatment plans to improve treatment outcomes and give patients more information about how their lifestyle choices affect their oral health.

The findings of the study have been published in the Frontiers in Medicine journal.

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