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New treatment for tooth damage in children

A new procedure which could be used to help repair the teeth of adolescents is expected to be introduced into mainstream dental treatment, according to experts.

Regenerative endodontics potentially allows professionals to save immature posterior and anterior teeth without the need for root canal treatment by harnessing the body’s natural ability to heal itself.

Julian Webber of Harley Street Centre for Endodontics told Dentistry: “The attraction is that the treatment can be completed in only two visits, spaced four to six weeks apart.”

He added that the natural strength of the tooth is maintained and he is already using the treatment to help save the tooth of a nine-year-old boy.

Dentistry reports that an estimated 25 per cent of children aged between seven and 16 sustain damage to their front teeth.

The current conventional method of treatment is the traditional apexification approach, which uses calcium hydroxide to create a seal at the end of an immature root in order to seal it.

However, this method can take 18 months for the seal to form and the tooth is unable to develop further once the root is filled.

In comparison, regenerative endodontics works within the root canal space by stimulating the matrix of new pulp which ultimately leads to the continuing development of that root.

Firstly, the canal is disinfected to wipe out any chance of infection. Next, the canal is filled with blood as a result of bleeding being stimulated from the apical region. This following blood clot contains what is needed to form new pulp so the tooth can maintain growth.

Research is currently underway at the University of Liverpool to compare the new procedure with the apexification approach. It is due to be completed next year.

If it is decided that regenerative endodontics is a positive step forward, then dental marketing would be an ideal way of letting patients know the treatment is available at your practice.

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