Did you know that instead of filling cavities, dentists may soon be able to Regenerate Teeth?
For dentists, a cavity is a conundrum—in order to save the tooth they must further damage it. Currently, the primary way to treat a cavity is to excavate the decay and the surrounding area before filling the resulting crater with a durable surrogate material such as metal, plastic or glass cement.
But what if instead of drilling holes into teeth and patching them up with synthetic fillers, dentists could coax our pearly whites to regrow themselves?
An article published recently in Scientific American suggests that this idea is not just science fiction but a real possibility in the not too distant future.
Paul Sharpe, a bioengineer at King’s College London, and his colleagues recently discovered a new way to do exactly this in mice. Last year they published a study describing their innovative techniques in Scientific Reports. And since then they have made even more progress that edges this experimental procedure closer to human clinical trials.
There have been many false dawns about the demise of “drilling and filling ” to repair cavities but its surely only a matter of time before somebody comes up with a workable alternative. The big question then is – can they make it affordable? That may take a bit longer!
If the treatment eventually becomes part of the dentist’s standard tool kit, scientists say it would easily be one of the field’s most important advances in 50 years.