Have you ever thought of banking your child’s umbilical cord or tissues, but could not get to it? Well you still have a chance to do so, with your child’s baby tooth!
Even if you have banked your child’s umbilical cord, dental stem cells have different applications, and have been shown to have the capacity to regenerate into different tissues!
DENTAL STEM CELLS AND TISSUE BANKING
According to National Institutes of Health, Stem cells are unspecialized cells capable of renewing themselves through cell division, and can be induced to become tissue or organ specific cells with specialized function.
Tissue banking has arisen in the wake of modern medicine, and will continue as a future trend, especially in the fields of pathology and clinical research to help combat diseases like cancers, and for the chance of DNA specific regenerative procedures.
THE REGENERATION PROCESS
Dentistry has not been left out of the regeneration process, as baby teeth have been found to have a good amount of dental stem cells. Dental stem cells do not have the definitive time periods, unlike traditional umbilical cord blood and tissue banking, thus providing parents more time to make this banking decision.
Dental stem cell harvesting process works by removing/extracting baby teeth, especially if there is a reason to do so. Baby teeth that have fallen out on their own or are loose, however, are not a very good source of stem cells. If there are no reasons to take out baby tooth, a second opportunity arises with wisdom teeth, as dental stem cells can also be found in the nerve tissues of wisdom teeth.
The process of banking a stem cell is fairly easy for the patient. According to Malterud, the processes are outlined thus:
-After the tooth is extracted by the dentist, it is stored in a jar provided by the banking company, which contains a preservative solution.
-The jar is packaged with ice pack and sent to the banking company for a Next day air shipping
-The company washes and disinfects the tissues, sections the tooth, and pulls out the live pulp tissues which contains the stem cells.
-The company then begins to plate and grow the stem cells into a colony with several million cells, and then they cryogenically freeze these cells.
Although tissue banking can be financially demanding, it is believed that this process may one day save life- now, nothing tops that! Do speak to you dentist about this option.
At Smile League Dental, we are committed to the clinical application of Evidence Based Research for the advancement and wellness of mankind.
Michal Christine Escobar, Dental Stem Cell Banking; AGD impact; October 2018, Vol. 46, No. 10.