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November 07, 2018 3 min read

Dr. Jim Ellis discusses Stem Cells and how they are used in the dentist office.

- Dr. Jim Ellis here for Oral Care Club discussing today something that's a pretty hot topic, pretty much everywhere not just in dentistry but that's stem cells. Taking stem cells, the different cells that would form liver, kidney, heart, bone, skin, whatever and taking those and reproducing whatever it is we need or lack or want to replace in our bodies. In dentistry, it's new teeth. Taking stem cells and implanting them in the jaw to grow a new tooth.

Sounds fantastic. Get questions all the time. Well I don't need crowns. I don't need implants. I can just regrow new teeth. Is that true? Well, the answer is yes. The technology is coming along where they are starting to actually grow teeth. There's always a but though, isn't there? Heres the but. The but is that you have to have your original tooth taken out. You have to go through an extraction. Well typically you wouldn't extract a good tooth to put in stem cells to regrow another good tooth.

You would want to take out a bad tooth. Well if any of you have had bad teeth, you know how bad a bad tooth hurts. So, you have to in order to make sense for you to have stem cells placed into your body, you have to get a cavity that then gets into a big cavity. Then it get into the nerve, that then infects the tooth, that then creates an abscess or your tooth breaks, thus exposing the nerve that allowing bacteria into the nerve, thus getting an abscess that's causing you pain and swelling and blah, blah, blah.

So, and then you have to go through the process of an extraction. You have to go through this extraction process, take pulling a tooth out and then in order to implant the stem cells. So, can stem cells regrow natural teeth? Yes. Is the process of getting a stem cell into your body to regrow your tooth an easier process, a cheaper process than brushing and flossing? No. Let me reiterate that. No. In certain circumstances obviously, this is a complete Godsend for people that were born missing teeth or who had a traumatic accident and then teeth were knocked out or whatever the case may be. There's cases where this works but for the general population to say, "I'm not gonna take care of my teeth cause I can get stem cells". Well the technology's coming but you're gonna have to go through a lot of pain, a lot of money, a lot of trauma, a lot of healing, a lot of bleeding, a lot of possible infection.

There's just, there's a kazum. There's a big kazum between the healthy tooth and getting stem cell and it's some place you just don't wanna be. So, stem cells coming is fantastic, great technology. It's going to be a Godsend for those people that absolutely need it but for the general public the good old brushing, flossing, avoiding sugars as much as possible is still right where you want to be. It's gonna save you a lot, time, effort, money, the whole thing. Have a good one.