When Root Canals Could Be a Distant Memory

A joint collaboration between researchers in the US and the UK has developed a revolutionary new approach to dental fillings. Essentially, these fillings will be designed to "regenerate" decayed or dying tooth material, also known as "dentin."

The Revolutionary New Way

It is challenging to use conventional dental fillings to fix teeth which have been significantly impacted by disease or previous surgery. Today, when dental disease is detected, the next step is a root canal, rather than the addition of filling material.

The new approach, which has met with widespread acclaim, seeks to develop synthetic biomaterials that help to support the regeneration of native stem cells within the teeth themselves.  As these stem cells do their work inside the teeth, the dentin is regenerated naturally, without resorting to the use of man-made fillings.  

Like Fillings, but Better

The synthetic biomaterials in this new discovery can be placed next to damaged tissue in order to stimulate natural regeneration using the body's own stem cell population. In this way, these biomaterials are similar to dental fillings but have much less impact on the body and a much quicker healing process.

When a dentist performs a root canal today, he or she is effectively emptying the tooth of its infection and that can actually weaken it. If the dentist is able to insert these special fillings that allow the tooth to regenerate its own tissue, this could potentially prevent the need for root canals altogether.

Crowns Could Be a Thing of the Past

Furthermore, the substance would be cured during the procedure with a special light, which means the repaired area could be potentially exposed, post-procedure, without any risk to the patient. In this case, it wouldn't need a crown or cap addition either, which can be a very expensive proposition that usually adds to the cost of a root canal treatment.

Less Cost?

So, while these new-age treatments are not yet available in a dental surgery near to you, there is a high likelihood that the procedure will be adopted in the short to medium term. In this case, you can look forward to a less invasive and less complicated dental treatment, using the body's own systems to repair all that previous damage. As the entire process takes a lot less time than a conventional root canal/crown procedure, it could well be a lot less expensive too. In the meantime, talk to your dentist about other root canal therapies that could benefit you.