No More Fillings? Gel Regenerates Teeth

by Eric Vanek on Wednesday, June 30, 2010 at 10:32am

In response to the forwarded article below:

cool title… but bad journalism… MSH can be used to affected Dentin , but because Hydroxyapatite Crystals (99% of Tooth Enamel) are an inorganic mineral, the natural processes that occur during bone regeneration will not work on infected enamel…

Now (in the same way that overzealous green peace members can have a positive effect on the enviornment regardless of their radical actions), this new peptide which is imbedded in a soft gel CAN help enamel that has been affected.

The difference is when there are irreversible changes made to the structure of the tooth. When bacteria penetrate through the enamel and reach the dentin, there are some irreversible changes. But, if at the onset of dental disease large amounts of fluoride, calcium are administered… then the 'start' of a cavity can be reversed. This is the process of remineralization and is frequently seen as a black spot in the grooves of the teeth or on the sides of teeth prior to orthodontic treatment. We (dentists) band the back 4 molars during traditional orthodontics and use a glass ionomer cement which releases fluoride directly onto the enamel while it is in place (it works like a rechargeable material full of fluoride ions).
So, if a patient has the start of cavities when they are 11 (the first molars have been present for 5 years at that time) the band will cover and seal them. When we remove the bands after ortho (2 years later) a black spot but no cavity is left behind… it almost looks like the tooth has a burn mark. It is usually located in between the teeth where "flossing cavities' are likely to have begun.

MSH is being used intraorally already in products to promote healing during endodontic (root canal) procedures. And I have personally seen amazing results with gum grafting over previously treated teeth. The filling can be removed, then treated and the root of the tooth gets covered again with healthy gum tissue hiding the previous recession and tooth defects…

Eric Vanek, D.D.S.
for the promotion
of Oral Health

On Mon, Jun 28, 2010 at 4:01 PM, <yul.> posted:


No more fillings? Gel regenerates teeth
New technique made cavity disappear in about a month, mice study found
by Eric Bland

updated 6/28/2010 1:24:05 PM ET

Dentists could soon hang up their drills. A new peptide, embedded in a soft gel or a thin, flexible film and placed next to a cavity, encourages cells inside teeth to regenerate in about a month, according to a new study in the journal ACS Nano. This technology is the first of its kind.
The new gel or thin film could eliminate the need to fill painful cavities or drill deep into the root canal of an infected tooth.
"It's not like toothpaste," which prevent cavities, said Nadia Benkirane-Jessel, a scientist at the Institut National de la Sante et de la Recherche Medicale and a co-author of a recent paper. "Here we are really trying to control cavities (after they develop)."
Drilling teeth and filling them is safe and effective. Dentists fill millions of cavities each year across the United States. However, though dentists numb the tooth, many patients still rue the sound of that drill.
The new research could make a trip to the dentist's office more pleasant, said Berkirane-Jessel. Instead of a drill, a quick dab of gel or a thin film against an infected tooth could heal teeth from within.
Cavities are bacteria and pus-filled holes on or in teeth which can lead to discomfort, pain and even tooth loss. When people eat acidic foods, consume sugary snacks or simply don't maintain proper oral hygiene, bacteria begin to eat away at the protective enamel and other minerals inside teeth.
The causes of cavities are varied. But for most cavities, the treatment is the same: drilling into a tooth, removing the decay and filling in the hole to prevent further damage.
The gel or thin film contains a peptide known as MSH, or melanocyte-stimulating hormone. Previous experiments, reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, showed that MSH encourages bone regeneration.
Bone and teeth are fairly similar, so the French scientists reasoned that if the MSH were applied to teeth, it should help healing as well.
To test their theory, the French scientists applied either a film or gel, both of which contained MSH, to cavity-filled mice teeth. After about one month, the cavities had disappeared, said Benkirane-Jessel.
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Benkirane-Jessel cautions that the MSH-containing films or gels only treat cavities; they don't prevent them. People will still need to brush, floss and use mouthwash to help prevent cavities from forming in the first place.
Treating cavities without drilling "would have its advantages," said Hom-Lay Wang, a dentist at the University of Michigan. Cavities and drilling can destroy the nerves and blood vessels inside a tooth, making it more brittle and likely to fracture. Regenerating a tooth could help avoid crowns after a cavity has been filled.
That said, regenerating a tooth from within would only be useful in a relatively small number of cases. Most cavities would still need to be drilled and filled.
In the meantime, patients can't slacken their oral hygiene either. Numerous clinical trials over several years will have to be completed before the MSH-containing gels or films are available to treat cavities in humans.

© 2010 Discovery Channel

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  18. Paige says:

    Where can I get this stuff? I am 22 and already have two implants from horrible tooth decay. I've been through just about every dental procedure and I experience constant tooth pain, sometimes only sensititvity and sometimes severe. Currently, I had two root canals done and have had continuous severe pain for the past two months, I'm just waiting for my dentist to tell me that this will be another implant. I've been taking advil daily and I know that can't be healthy. If there is any way to restore my teeth, I would be so incredibly happy.

    • Dr. Vanek says:

      We will be happy to evaluate your condition. We give our patients a “Free 1st Visit” to evaluate and/or give people a 2nd opinion on their oral health.

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