TIN

OTHER NAME(S):

Atomic Number 50, Estanho, Estaño, Etain, Latta, Sn, Stannum, Tenn, Zinn.<br/><br/>

Overview

Overview Information

Tin (Sn) is a metal. It can exist by itself or as part of a tin compound. Tin compounds form when tin combines with other elements such as chloride, fluoride, sulfur, or oxygen. The most common form of tin in commercial products is called stannous fluoride.

People take tin by mouth for cancer.

People use tin as a mouth rinse or toothpaste for bad breath, cavities, sensitive teeth, dry mouth, gingivitis, and plaque. It is also applied to the scalp for hair loss.

Tin is used in manufacturing for canning foods.

How does it work?

Tin fluoride seems to prevent bacteria from forming, which might prevent plaque and cavities. Tin compounds also seem to prevent the nerves around the teeth from being stimulated, which can prevent tooth sensitivity.

Uses

Uses & Effectiveness?

Possibly Effective for

  • Sensitive teeth. Applying a gel or toothpaste containing tin as stannous fluoride seems to reduce tooth sensitivity. But it might take up to 2 weeks to work. Rinsing with sodium fluoride solution can reduce symptoms much faster.
  • A mild form of gum disease (gingivitis). Most research shows that using a toothpaste containing tin as stannous fluoride reduces symptoms of mild gum disease, including gum swelling and bleeding. Stannous fluoride toothpaste seems to work about as well as toothpaste containing triclosan and might work better than toothpaste containing sodium fluoride.

Insufficient Evidence for

  • Tooth plaque. Most research shows that using a toothpaste containing tin as stannous fluoride can reduce plaque, but only by a small amount. It's unclear if stannous fluoride toothpaste works better than toothpaste containing sodium fluoride or triclosan. Research results are conflicting.
  • Dry mouth. Early research suggests that using a gel containing tin as stannous fluoride each evening helps to make the mouth feel less dry in people with dry mouth.
  • Bad breath. Brushing teeth with toothpaste containing tin as stannous fluoride up to three times seems to improve bad breath. It's unclear if stannous fluoride toothpaste reduces bad breath when used long-term.
  • Cancer.
  • Dental cavities.
  • Hair loss.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate tin for these uses.

Side Effects

Side Effects & Safety

Toothpastes and other dental products containing tin are LIKELY SAFE for use by adults when used appropriately. It might cause teeth staining.

There isn't enough reliable information to know if tin is safe when taken by mouth as a medicine. Large amounts might cause diarrhea, stomach pain, and nausea.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There isn't enough reliable information to know if tin is safe to use when pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Children: Toothpastes and other dental products containing tin are LIKELY SAFE for children over the age of 6 years when used appropriately.

Interactions

Interactions?

We currently have no information for TIN Interactions.

Dosing

Dosing

The following doses have been studied in scientific research:

ADULTS

Applied to the teeth:

  • Sensitive teeth: Gel or toothpaste containing tin as stannous fluoride 0.4% has been used at least daily for at least 2 weeks.
  • Gingivitis: Toothpaste containing tin as stannous fluoride 0.4% has been used at least once daily.

View References

REFERENCES:

  • Nielsen, F. H. How should dietary guidance be given for mineral elements with beneficial actions or suspected of being essential? J Nutr 1996;126(9 Suppl):2377S-2385S. View abstract.
  • Akagi, R., Takahashi, T., and Sassa, S. Cytoprotective effects of heme oxygenase in acute renal failure. Contrib Nephrol 2005;148:70-85. View abstract.
  • Arakawa, Y. [Biological activity of tin and immunity]. Sangyo Eiseigaku Zasshi 1997;39(1):1-20. View abstract.
  • Aschner, M., Gannon, M., and Kimelberg, H. K. Interactions of trimethyl tin (TMT) with rat primary astrocyte cultures: altered uptake and efflux of rubidium, L-glutamate and D-aspartate. Brain Res 1992;582(2):181-185. View abstract.
  • Blunden, S. and Wallace, T. Tin in canned food: a review and understanding of occurrence and effect. Food Chem Toxicol 2003;41(12):1651-1662. View abstract.
  • Cardarelli, N. Tin and the thymus gland: a review. Thymus 1990;15(4):223-231. View abstract.
  • Caussy, D., Gochfeld, M., Gurzau, E., Neagu, C., and Ruedel, H. Lessons from case studies of metals: investigating exposure, bioavailability, and risk. Ecotoxicol Environ Saf 2003;56(1):45-51. View abstract.
  • Clarkson, T. W. Metal toxicity in the central nervous system. Environ Health Perspect 1987;75:59-64. View abstract.
  • Greger, J. L. and Johnson, M. A. Effect of dietary tin on zinc. Copper and iron utilization in rats. Food Cosmet Toxicol 1981;19(2):163-166. View abstract.
  • Herczegh, A., Gombik, A., Rost, M., Wierzbicka, M., and Banoczy, J. [Study of the effectiveness of amine fluoride and stannous fluoride containing toothpaste and mouthwash]. Fogorv Sz 1991;84(6-7):181-184. View abstract.
  • Hirner, A. V. and Rettenmeier, A. W. Methylated metal(loid) species in humans. Met Ions Life Sci 2010;7:465-521. View abstract.
  • Jackson-Rosario, S. E. and Self, W. T. Targeting selenium metabolism and selenoproteins: novel avenues for drug discovery. Metallomics 2010;2(2):112-116. View abstract.
  • Johnson, M. A., Baier, M. J., and Greger, J. L. Effects of dietary tin on zinc, copper, iron, manganese, and magnesium metabolism of adult males. Am J Clin Nutr 1982;35:1332-1338.
  • Kimbrough, R. D. Toxicity and health effects of selected organotin compounds: a review. Environ Health Perspect 1976;14:51-56. View abstract.
  • Krigman, M. R. and Silverman, A. P. General toxicology of tin and its organic compounds. Neurotoxicology 1984;5(2):129-139. View abstract.
  • Miller, S., Truong, T., Heu, R., Stranick, M., Bouchard, D., and Gaffar, A. Recent advances in stannous fluoride technology: antibacterial efficacy and mechanism of action towards hypersensitivity. Int Dent J 1994;44(1 Suppl 1):83-98. View abstract.
  • Mori, Y., Iesato, K., Ueda, S., Mori, T., Iwasaki, I., Ohnishi, K., Seino, Y., Wakashin, Y., Wakashin, M., and Okuda, K. Renal tubular disturbances induced by tributyl-tin oxide in guinea pigs: a secondary Fanconi syndrome. Clin Nephrol 1984;21(2):118-125. View abstract.
  • Paraskevas, S. and van der Weijden, G. A. A review of the effects of stannous fluoride on gingivitis. J Clin Periodontol 2006;33(1):1-13. View abstract.
  • Rolla, G. and Ellingsen, J. E. Clinical effects and possible mechanisms of action of stannous fluoride. Int Dent J 1994;44(1 Suppl 1):99-105. View abstract.
  • Rudel, H. Case study: bioavailability of tin and tin compounds. Ecotoxicol Environ Saf 2003;56(1):180-189. View abstract.
  • Sampson, C. B. Complications and difficulties in radiolabelling blood cells: a review. Nucl Med Commun 1996;17(8):648-658. View abstract.
  • Sensabaugh, C. and Sagel, M. E. Stannous fluoride dentifrice with sodium hexametaphosphate: review of laboratory, clinical and practice-based data. J Dent Hyg 2009;83(2):70-78. View abstract.
  • Sherman, L. R., Masters, J., Peterson, R., and Levine, S. Tin concentration in the thymus glands of rats and mice and its relation to the involution of the gland. J Anal Toxicol 1986;10(1):6-9. View abstract.
  • Sjostrom, S. and Kalfas, S. Tissue necrosis after subgingival irrigation with fluoride solution. J Clin Periodontol 1999;26(4):257-260. View abstract.
  • Thrash, W. J., Dodds, M. W., and Jones, D. L. The effect of stannous fluoride on dentinal hypersensitivity. Int Dent J 1994;44(1 Suppl 1):107-118. View abstract.
  • US Department of Health and Human Services. Toxicological profile for tin and tin compounds. Available at: http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/toxprofiles/tp55.pdf
  • White, D. J. Reactivity of fluoride dentifrices with artificial caries. I. Effects on early lesions: F uptake, surface hardening and remineralization. Caries Res 1987;21(2):126-140. View abstract.
  • White, D. J. Reactivity of fluoride dentifrices with artificial caries. II. Effects on subsurface lesions: F uptake, F distribution, surface hardening and remineralization. Caries Res 1988;22(1):27-36. View abstract.
  • Winship, K. A. Toxicity of tin and its compounds. Adverse Drug React Acute Poisoning Rev 1988;7(1):19-38. View abstract.
  • Gunsolley, J. C. A meta-analysis of six-month studies of antiplaque and antigingivitis agents. J Am Dent Assoc 2006;137(12):1649-1657. View abstract.
  • Nielsen, F. H. How should dietary guidance be given for mineral elements with beneficial actions or suspected of being essential? J Nutr 1996;126(9 Suppl):2377S-2385S. View abstract.
  • Blunden, S. and Wallace, T. Tin in canned food: a review and understanding of occurrence and effect. Food Chem Toxicol 2003;41(12):1651-1662. View abstract.
  • Cardarelli, N. Tin and the thymus gland: a review. Thymus 1990;15(4):223-231. View abstract.
  • Caussy, D., Gochfeld, M., Gurzau, E., Neagu, C., and Ruedel, H. Lessons from case studies of metals: investigating exposure, bioavailability, and risk. Ecotoxicol Environ Saf 2003;56(1):45-51. View abstract.
  • Clarkson, T. W. Metal toxicity in the central nervous system. Environ Health Perspect 1987;75:59-64. View abstract.
  • Feng X, Chen X, Cheng R, Sun L, Zhang Y, He T. Breath malodor reduction with use of a stannous-containing sodium fluoride dentifrice: a meta-analysis of four randomized and controlled clinical trials. Am J Dent. 2010;23 Spec No B:27B-31B. View abstract.
  • Gerlach RW, Amini P. Randomized controlled trial of 0.454% stannous fluoride dentifrice to treat gingival bleeding. Compend Contin Educ Dent. 2012;33(2):134-6, 138. View abstract.
  • Greger, J. L. and Johnson, M. A. Effect of dietary tin on zinc. Copper and iron utilization in rats. Food Cosmet Toxicol 1981;19(2):163-166. View abstract.
  • Herczegh, A., Gombik, A., Rost, M., Wierzbicka, M., and Banoczy, J. [Study of the effectiveness of amine fluoride and stannous fluoride containing toothpaste and mouthwash]. Fogorv Sz 1991;84(6-7):181-184. View abstract.
  • Hirner, A. V. and Rettenmeier, A. W. Methylated metal(loid) species in humans. Met Ions Life Sci 2010;7:465-521. View abstract.
  • Jackson-Rosario, S. E. and Self, W. T. Targeting selenium metabolism and selenoproteins: novel avenues for drug discovery. Metallomics 2010;2(2):112-116. View abstract.
  • Johnson, M. A., Baier, M. J., and Greger, J. L. Effects of dietary tin on zinc, copper, iron, manganese, and magnesium metabolism of adult males. Am J Clin Nutr 1982;35:1332-1338.
  • Kimbrough, R. D. Toxicity and health effects of selected organotin compounds: a review. Environ Health Perspect 1976;14:51-56. View abstract.
  • Krigman, M. R. and Silverman, A. P. General toxicology of tin and its organic compounds. Neurotoxicology 1984;5(2):129-139. View abstract.
  • Milleman JL, Milleman KR, Santos SL, Proskin HM, Battershell KK, DiMarino JC. Subjective assessment of Enamelon® preventive treatment gel in a self-reported dry-mouth population. Compend Contin Educ Dent. 2016;37(8):e5-8. View abstract.
  • Miller, S., Truong, T., Heu, R., Stranick, M., Bouchard, D., and Gaffar, A. Recent advances in stannous fluoride technology: antibacterial efficacy and mechanism of action towards hypersensitivity. Int Dent J 1994;44(1 Suppl 1):83-98. View abstract.
  • Paraskevas, S. and van der Weijden, G. A. A review of the effects of stannous fluoride on gingivitis. J Clin Periodontol 2006;33(1):1-13. View abstract.
  • Parkinson CR, Hughes N, Hall C, Whelton H, Gallob J, Mason S. Three randomized clinical trials to assess the short-term efficacy of anhydrous 0.454% w/w stannous fluoride dentifrices for the relief of dentin hypersensitivity. Am J Dent. 2016;29(1):25-32. View abstract.
  • Rolla, G. and Ellingsen, J. E. Clinical effects and possible mechanisms of action of stannous fluoride. Int Dent J 1994;44(1 Suppl 1):99-105. View abstract.
  • Rudel, H. Case study: bioavailability of tin and tin compounds. Ecotoxicol Environ Saf 2003;56(1):180-189. View abstract.
  • Sälzer S, Slot DE, Dörfer CE, Van der Weijden GA. Comparison of triclosan and stannous fluoride dentifrices on parameters of gingival inflammation and plaque scores: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Int J Dent Hyg. 2015 Feb;13(1):1-17. View abstract.
  • Sampson, C. B. Complications and difficulties in radiolabelling blood cells: a review. Nucl Med Commun 1996;17(8):648-658. View abstract.
  • Sherman, L. R., Masters, J., Peterson, R., and Levine, S. Tin concentration in the thymus glands of rats and mice and its relation to the involution of the gland. J Anal Toxicol 1986;10(1):6-9. View abstract.
  • Thrash, W. J., Dodds, M. W., and Jones, D. L. The effect of stannous fluoride on dentinal hypersensitivity. Int Dent J 1994;44(1 Suppl 1):107-118. View abstract.
  • U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Part 355. Anticaries Drug Products for Over-the-Counter Human Use. 2017. http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/cfrsearch.cfm?fr=355.50. Accessed February 5, 2019.
  • US Department of Health and Human Services. Toxicological profile for tin and tin compounds. Available at: http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/toxprofiles/tp55.pdf
  • West NX, Seong J, Hellin N, Eynon H, Barker ML, He T. A clinical study to measure anti-erosion properties of a stabilized stannous fluoride dentifrice relative to a sodium fluoride/triclosan dentifrice. Int J Dent Hyg. 2017;15(2):113-119. View abstract.
  • Winship, K. A. Toxicity of tin and its compounds. Adverse Drug React Acute Poisoning Rev 1988;7(1):19-38. View abstract.

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CONDITIONS OF USE AND IMPORTANT INFORMATION: This information is meant to supplement, not replace advice from your doctor or healthcare provider and is not meant to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions or adverse effects. This information may not fit your specific health circumstances. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified health care provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor or health care professional before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your health care plan or treatment and to determine what course of therapy is right for you.

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