WHAT DOES IT DO? BasicMints contain Cavistat, a cavity-fighting agent that includes two major components. Cavistat disrupts oral chemistry and biology in two ways. First, it introduces an amino acid called arginine to the mouth. When bacteria in the mouth break the arginine down, it neutralizes the acid generated by sugars in food, which reduces the amount of acid in the mouth and helps prevent damage to teeth. Additionally the Cavistat adds other chemical compounds that protect the minerals that make up teeth from dissolving.
ANATOMY OF A TOOTH: We think of teeth as being the part visible above the gum, but this is only the tip, or crown, of a tooth. There is also a neck that lies at the gum line, and a root, located below the gum. The crown of each tooth has an enamel coating to protect the underlying dentine. Enamel is even harder than bone, thanks to rows of tightly packed calcium and phosphorus crystals. The underlying dentine is slightly softer, and contains tiny tubules that connect with the central nerve of the tooth within the pulp. The pulp forms the central chamber of the tooth, and is made of soft tissue containing blood vessels that carry nutrients to the tooth. It also contains nerves so teeth can sense hot and cold, as well as lymph vessels to carry white blood cells to fight bacteria.