Regenerative Endodontics

Researchers in Chicago have recently gotten 1.7 million dollars from the American Association of Endodontists Foundation to research ways to better endodontic treatment. Endodontics is the branch of dentistry that deals with the internal structures of the teeth as well as the roots. So far the most common endodontic treatment is a root canal treatment. While this is an extremely effective way of getting rid of the parts of the tooth pulp that are infected with bacteria and are the best way to curb infection, they are also sometimes quite harmful.

They often leave teeth dead without their internal pulp to keep them alive, and even when they do not, they do nothing for regenerating the tooth, nursing it back to its former health. This is exactly why this money was granted, to work out new methods to help with regenerating the root canaled teeth, to have fewer instances of dead teeth, and more instances of teeth getting back to functioning properly.


There are several methods that are already halfway done or done to an extent that it is clear how these methods will one day work and save folks. The methods that are being invested in currently are tooth pulp regeneration in infected teeth in young patients (this is pediatric medicine), and revascularization along with apexification. if these methods turn out to be worth it, then root canal treatments as we know them may become a thing of the past, much like amalgam fillings, peroxide based tooth whitening, or extraction of living teeth are already.


If a tooth is incompletely formed, a cap will sometimes be put at the end of the tooth, this procedure is called apexification. This procedure can help heal teeth that need to be capped because the apex or tips of the roots of the tooth may be too far gone and may need to be severed or may be gone from damage caused by bacteria.


When doing the root canal treatment, the dentist takes a special tool and makes tiny incisions in your tooth roto and the surrounding gums as well, just enough to make it bleed. The blood will form into a blood clot, and this blood clot will turn into new blood vessels, which will provide oxygen and nutrients to the tooth, helping the tooth roots heal by themselves, a process which is beneficial to the tooth, and does not happen with regular root canal treatments.  

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