Zinc has been labeled a poison in recent times as an ingredient in denture adhesives and anti-cold nasal sprays. Is this alarm appropriate? Absolutely! But some basic discussion of the ‘why for it’s use’ is required.
Zinc is an essential mineral required for good health. But like all nutrients, we need to take a balanced amount to stay within the range of its healthful benefits. That’s 9 mg/day for women and 11 mg/day for men with a maximum limit of 20 to 40 mg/day. Zinc plays a critical role in a long list of bio-chemical reactions in the body. Zinc is an anti-oxidant that promotes healing and prevents infection. For this reason it is commonly used in skin creams, hair shampoos, sun screens and diet supplements. It’s known to prevent halitosis, age related macular degeneration and gastroenteritis.
But too much of a good thing can come back and bite you. Too much Zinc can cause ataxia (lack of muscle control), lethargy (feeling tired) and Copper Deficiency resulting in permanent nerve damage.
Lack of Zinc causes growth retardation, delayed sexual maturation, increased infections and diarrhea. 800,000 children die every year due to low Zinc.
All of the problems with Zinc have stemmed from improper labeling and excessive use.
In the case of denture adhesives, the manufacturers are now removing Zinc in order to avoid the consequences of using too much. Unfortunately, Zinc was a benefit when used properly.
The BOTTOM LINE: If You Have To Use Giant Globs Of Adhesive In Order To Make Your Dentures “Fit”, Then You Need To See Your Dentist For A New Set Or At Least A New Reline To Make Them Fit Better.