Excess zinc intake harmful for denture wearers

Updated: Mar 06, 2011, 00:00 AM IST

Washington: Zinc plays a vital role in our immune system, but it could be harmful for denture wearers if taken in excess.

"If a patient wears dentures, it is essential that he or she follows the instructions and recommended dosages on the product label," advises J.A. von Fraunhofer, study co-author and member of Academy of General Dentistry (AGD), the journal of General Dentistry reports.

"Many times, patients will overuse the adhesive and, although it happens rarely, they can ingest toxic levels of zinc, with adverse neurologic effects," said Faunhofer, according to an AGD statement.

"An ill-fitting denture is one reason that a patient could be overusing adhesive," says AGD spokesperson Manuel A. Cordero.

"Abusing denture adhesive could cause nausea, stomach ache, and mouth irritation," says Cordero. "Over time, toxic levels of zinc could cause a copper deficiency, which has been linked to neurological damage."

The mineral can be found in food sources, such as yogurt, eggs, and fish. It is also widely used in dental products, specifically denture adhesives.