Scientists are frantically researching the regeneration of the tooth pulp, including the nerve, and blood vessels. Using stem cells, scientists have successfully regrown the pulp, and human trials are planned to begin in 2015.
In a study published in November, scientists at Baylor and Rice University were able to show pulp regeneration in human teeth in the lab. They are re-growing dental pulp using a protein hydrogel and will soon be testing it on live dogs. In addition, they are looking at the potential of this gel-like substance to reduce dental inflammation.
The hope is to improve the health of the tooth while minimizing the pain often associated with current treatments (root canals). This is an exciting time in dentistry, because, according to the American Dental Association, there are an estimated 15.1 million root canals every year in the US.
Despite these amazing advances, nothing is more important to good oral health than regular brushing and flossing.