Davies, 51, is a plaintiff in a class action lawsuit filed this month in Canada's westernmost province alleging that the manufacturers of denture creams failed to adequately warn consumers that excessive use of the product could cause zinc poisoning. This happens when a high intake of zinc upsets the required balance of zinc and copper needed for optimum health. The subsequent depletion of copper in the body can lead to severe neurological symptoms.
The class action lawsuit in Canada comes on the heels of lawsuits in the US making similar allegations about denture cream zinc poisoning. While manufacturers are required to list the presence of zinc on product labels, there is no mandated requirement to specify the levels of zinc contained within. What's more, while manufacturers identify recommended usage amounts it is alleged that there were no warnings regarding the potential risks or consequences of using too much product.
Consumers tend to assume more is better when it comes to denture cream, in order to avoid potentially embarrassing slippage of dentures. What's more, people with ill-fitting dentures who can't afford to have them updated tend to use massive amounts of denture cream to keep them in place.
READ MORE FIXODENT DENTURE CREAM POISONING LEGAL NEWS
One of the manufacturers named in the class action lawsuit, GlaxoSmithKline, stopped making denture cream containing zinc last February after a spate of lawsuits in the US began sprouting. Zinc is added to the cream to aid with adhesion. The manufacturer warned at the time that excessive intake of zinc can cause numbness, tingling or difficulty walking.
Proctor & Gamble, which is also named as a defendant in the class action lawsuit, is being lobbied to stop manufacturing denture cream containing zinc as well.
The lawyer acting for Davies says he has been contacted by several hundred people allegedly affected by denture cream zinc poisoning. He estimates that there could be thousands similarly affected.