Researchers from the Wyss Institute at Harvard University and the University of Nottingham are working on a technology that could make root canals obsolete.
During a root canal, the pulp of the tooth and the nerve are removed. The researchers are developing new regenerative dental fillings made of synthetic biomaterials that use the stem cells inside your teeth to repair tissue. The fillings would spur stem cells to repair and regrow dentin, the hard substance that makes up most of teeth, and pulp tissue, where blood vessels and nerves are found.
The new fillings would be an improvement over conventional fillings—which are actually toxic to the pulp—because they would heal teeth from within. This could change the way dental diseases are treated, and potentially eliminate or reduce the need for procedures such as root canals. For patients who suffer from dental disease or undergo dental surgery, the new treatment could be extraordinary.
According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, stem cells can serve many different functions in the body, including repairs. Currently stem cells are used, for example, to help treat spinal cord injuries, arthritis and diabetes.
It will likely be some time before the new fillings are available on a widespread basis. In the meantime, if you need a root canal, crown, filling or tooth replacement, give Angell’s Dentistry a call. Dr. Douglas Angell utilizes the latest dental techniques and technology to provide our patients with beautiful, healthy smiles. We serve Troy, Birmingham and surrounding areas. Learn more about us at: www.angellsdentistry.com.