A toothache may put you through a trying time. It can be severe enough to disrupt the normal course of life. But such severity takes time to crop up. Dental treatments, in the past, involved much pain and suffering. Though modern dentistry has evolved from that of the past and is mostly pain-free, yet the perception of pain still exists in people’s mind. This is also referred to as dental anxiety and large number of people suffers from it.
Dental anxiety prevents the majority of toothache patients to access timely treatment. As a result, the problem goes deeper with time and the degrees of your pain and suffering go increasing. Finally, when you turn up for treatment, the crucial time has already gone by and the diseased tooth may have to be extracted.
If you’re lucky, the tooth may require root canal therapy and thus it can be retained.
Tooth decay and gum disease are the two major causes behind tooth loss. Dental trauma, road accidents, body contact sports are other common factors behind tooth loss.
Dental implants procedure
Traditional dentistry relied on dental bridges and dentures to resolve the problem of missing tooth. These solutions hardly catered only to the aesthetic aspect of a lost tooth and not the functional one. Gradually, the technology behind tooth loss treatment evolved with dental implants and biocompatible metal titanium was introduced. Unlike the conventional bridges and dentures, implants cater to both aesthetic and functional aspects of natural teeth. Titanium post is surgically drilled into the jaws and it acts as the network of roots that anchors a natural tooth to its position. An artificial crown is placed on top of the metal post to resemble the lost tooth. In course of time, the biocompatible metal post fuses with the surrounding tissues and gum bones.
Interestingly, ever-evolving technology has come up with more advanced and prospective alternative to teeth implant in form of stem cell teeth replacement.
Stem cell teeth replacement
The nature has gifted man with just two sets of teeth – the baby set, which automatically falls off when one is about 12 years of age. It is replaced by your permanent set of teeth, which lasts your lifetime. Certain other species like shark get their teeth replaced in their adulthood just within a few weeks. This proves nature possesses the ability to replace adult teeth.
Dental stem cells
The human body is made up of various types of cells. Stem cells are a basic and common component that builds up the different organs in your body. In other words, they are the undifferentiated cells that can change to each and every type of cell in your body.
Recent studies show that there is a specific reservoir of stem cells for the teeth in our body. These cells can replicate themselves naturally. Therefore, growing a fresh set of teeth in adulthood is not exactly a fiction any more.
Stem cells have numerous applications in medical science. Scientists are busy trying to find its potential role in replacing the teeth. Tooth implantation with dental stem cells seems to be arriving fast.
The King’s College in London plays a significant role in this revolutionary research. Their researchers have already replicated teeth from stem cells in rats. On the other hand, a research team at Whys Institute in Harvard has successfully re-grown teeth in rats combining human gum tissue and rat stem cells.
Apart from replicating teeth from stem cells, scientists are also trying to identify cells in the teeth that can naturally heal diseases in the tooth like cavity or tooth decay.
Dental implants treatment is not only costly but also a complicated and invasive procedure. It requires:
- Sufficient healing time
- Prolong procedure
- Chances of rejection or failure are high
Considering these negative factors, stem cells teeth implants procedure is likely to be more popular and acceptable once it is introduced.