1190 Bookcliff Avenue #201, Grand Junction, CO 81501 Download Forms Like Us Read Our Reviews Visit Our Blog
(970) 242-3635

Are There Stem Cells In Teeth?

May 4, 2018

Filed under: Missing Tooth or Teeth,Tooth Information — Tags: — Dr Gillis @ 7:27 am

Are There Stem Cells in Teeth?

Could it be that your teeth may someday save your life?

There are stem cells in teeth!  Dare I mention mesenchymal stem cells?  Yes! Within your teeth are potent stem cells that could help with both medical and dental conditions.  When people hear ‘stem cells’ they may think of fetal tissues or the questionable harvesting of cells from a placenta or embryo.  Actually, stem cells are found in many places in our bodies such as in the blood, in bone marrow, muscles, and in fatty tissue.  The broken tooth here may contain healthy stem cells – do we save them?

Sometimes a healthy tooth has to be extracted. Maybe someday soon we will be saving stem cells from within your teeth!

Harvesting stem cells from extracted teeth sounds futuristic and even off.  However mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are located within the pulp chambers of vital teeth – teeth that are alive.  This is not true for decayed, and infected teeth that are extracted for say an abscess, but is true for teeth that are extracted for orthodontic treatment or the removal of wisdom teeth due to lack of space.

Multipotent MSCs – think of these as ‘Superman MSCs’ can be altered to change into other tissues such as muscle, tendons, blood, nerve tissue and even bone!  Maybe someday we will be able to grow new teeth from your own cells.  Based on an article by Mark Malterud, DDS, MAGD “Mesenchymal stem cells: the marriage of minimally invasive biomimetic dentistry with medicine.” General Dentistry magazine in the November/December 2017,

Could it be that your teeth may someday save your life? When a healthy tooth has to be extracted maybe we should be saving the stem cells that are inside these teeth!

This tooth is fractured, but it may still have viable stem cells inside. Should we save these?

“There are between 2 and 4 million of these cells in each vital tooth from donors aged 13 – 25 years; the numbers begin to decrease after the age of 25 years.”

That’s still a lot of cells in a single extracted tooth!  There are even MSCs in the periodontal ligament that holds teeth in the bone.  Because these cells are formed during very early development, they can be differentiated into the specific cells needed.  The thought presented in this article is that is we harvest and save these cells, we may be able to prevent the more invasive harvesting of stem cells for some purpose in the future.

Already in dentistry we can draw a small amount of your blood during a surgery, spin it down, and take the platelet-rich plasma to use for improving our success with your bone or tissue graft.  We may even be able to bring new life to a tooth requiring a root canal!

Already in the US, several companies process and cryogenically store MSCs from dental pulps.  The dentist would need to have a special processing kit to use once it was determined that the tooth needing to be extracted was indeed viable.

  • Determine tooth viability
  • Sign forms
  • Careful extraction
  • Your tooth is placed in a special container in a transport medium
  • Container is sealed and shipped overnight super express in ice
  • Once received the tooth is ‘processed’
    • Washed
    • Disinfected
    • Sectioned
    • Tissue is broken into very small pieces
    • Pieces are suspended in a flask
    • Cells are grown and allowed to multiply
    • MSCs cells are separated from others that were also there
  • Dental pulp MSCs grow readily in standard culture media
  • Once there are ’enough’ good cells, they are frozen to a super cold temperature where they will remain until needed.

So, the patient has this source of cells for a future need such as an injury or disease.  You would call the storage facility (this article mentioned Tooth Bank, BioEden, Stem Save, and Store-A-Tooth), request that your stem cells be delivered to the dentist, doctor, or clinic where they can be processed, or the storage facility could modify the cells as needed.  Your MSCs could potentially be influenced to create the specific tissues that just might save your life, or just make it better.

Sometimes I just like to share interesting stories.  This blog is for you dear reader of blogs!  Our office is in the Grand Valley on the Western Slope of Colorado and we serve patients from Grand Junction, CO, Palisade, CO, Fruita, CO; Clifton, CO and surrounding communities.  Please call our office (970) 242-3635 if you need a general or cosmetic dentist.  We would love to see you!

Yours for better dental health,

Julie Gillis DDS, AAACD

Restoring Teeth/Restoring Smiles

 

Porcelain Partial Crowns Close Gaps in Your Smile!

February 10, 2017

Filed under: Missing Tooth or Teeth,Smile Makeover,Uncategorized — Tags: — Dr Gillis @ 7:30 am

Would you like to close the gaps in your smile with Porcelain Partial Crowns, veneers, or bridges?  Many would like to do this but they could use more information!

This blog reviews one method for closing gaps between teeth with Porcelain Partial Crowns and Bridges.  Porcelain partial crowns are described as well as the benefits of this treatment.

Our patient did not like the gaps present between her teeth or the missing lower tooth. Porcelain partial crowns, veneers and a bridge were the answer.

Our patient did not like the gaps present between her teeth or the missing lower tooth. Porcelain partial crowns, veneers and a bridge were the answer.

The restored smile is much more pleasing and natural looking.

The restored smile is much more pleasing and natural looking.

 

If you are one of many people with gaps in your smile, I hope this blog has some good information for you!  Our office has been using the wonders of porcelain veneers, porcelain crowns or partial crowns and bridges to close spaces for years.  We often see people who have missing teeth or who have teeth that just don’t seem big enough to fill the space available st that even though they have the correct number of teeth, there are still gaps between the teeth.

We work with a high quality dental laboratory that has been completing porcelain restorations for years.  Our dental laboratory technician is accredited with the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD).  Please wee our web site at www.juliegillisdds.com for more information on the accreditation process and what that means for our patients.  Dr. Julie Gillis is also accredited with the AACD.

Our patient did not like the gaps present between her teeth or the missing lower tooth. Porcelain partial crowns, veneers and a bridge were the answer.

Our patient did not like the gaps present between her teeth or the missing lower tooth. Porcelain partial crowns, veneers and a bridge were the answer.

Porcelain partial crowns are very esthetic and natural looking.

Porcelain partial crowns are very esthetic and natural looking.

What are porcelain partial crowns and bridges?

Porcelain is stacked or pressed on a model of your tooth to create an ideal form and color.  Because porcelain restorations have improved significantly, a talented dentist and laboratory technician team can create restorations that mimic tooth structure.  If the porcelain material is applied in layers, the lab technician may use 10 – 20 layers or more to create the shape, form and color that is required along with any special characteristics that are present in the natural dentition that you want to duplicate.  Gone should be the days when it was obvious if someone has had dental work!

Our patient did not like the gaps present between her teeth or the missing lower tooth.

Our patient did not like the gaps present between her teeth or the missing lower tooth.

Our patient did not like the gaps present between her teeth or the missing lower tooth. Porcelain partial crowns, veneers and a bridge were the answer for this beautiful and healthy smile!

Porcelain partial crowns, veneers and a bridge were the answer for this beautiful and healthy smile!

You should not be able to look at someone’s teeth and know that they have had dental work done to create their beautiful smile!  Porcelain partial crowns and bridges should look very natural in all areas of your mouth.  They must also be easy for you to clean so that you can make your new restorations last as long as possible.  The goal is to conserve as much of your teeth as possible, while creating ideal restorations.  Technically, a porcelain veneer covers just the front of the tooth.  When we are adding width and length to the tooth, the porcelain will need to wrap the sides and the top (incisal edge) of the tooth.  This becomes a porcelain partial veneer.  When there is enough of your own tooth wrapped with porcelain, the correct term would be a porcelain crown or cap.

When porcelain crowns span a gap between teeth and are joined together with one or more artificial porcelain crowns between them, you have a porcelain bridge similar to the one shown here.  There is a limit to the length of span that two teeth should support as this puts extra stress on the supporting teeth.

Our office would be happy to offer a consult to review is porcelain partial crowns or bridges are right for you!  We are in Mesa County, Colorado.  Please visit our Facebook page at Julie M Gillis DDS to see some of our cases!  Or visit our website at www.juliegillisdds.com for more information.

Yours for better dental health,
Julie Gillis DDS
Restoring Teeth/Restoring Smiles

Yikes! Your Front Tooth is Missing – Now What?

August 20, 2014

Missing central incisor due to extensive decay and fracture.

Missing central incisor due to extensive decay and fracture.

For most of us, missing a front tooth is a dental emergency whether or not there is any pain!  Don’t panic – we can fix that!

This blog will tell you a bit about your options to replace that missing tooth including the following:

  • Treatment partials
  • Dental implants
  • A Snap-On Smile
  •  An Essix appliance
Central incisor replaced with an implant and an implant crown.

Central incisor replaced with a dental  implant and an implant crown.

A "flipper" or treatment partial can be made to fill the space where the missing tooth is.

A “flipper” or treatment partial can be made to fill the space where the missing tooth is.

A treatment partial or "flipper" to replace a single front tooth.

A treatment partial or “flipper” to replace a single front tooth.

Sometimes a treatment partial can be used while the tissue and bone heals around the dental implant.  One disadvantage of treatment partials is that they may compress the tissue in an unfavorable way over the healing implant site.  Your dentist may then want to create for you a custom Snap On Smile or Essix splint.  Both of these fit over your existing teeth and replace the missing tooth or teeth.  Because they are supported by your teeth and do not rest on the gum tissue, they can be used before and after the dental implant is placed until a more permanent restoration can be fabricated.

A porcelain abutment over a dental implant to replace a missing front tooth.

A porcelain abutment over a dental implant to replace a missing front tooth.

 

Only her dentist would know that the front tooth is not 'real'!

Only her dentist would know that the front tooth is not ‘real’!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Your dentist may recommend a dental implant and implant crown to replace your missing front tooth.  The dentist or surgeon that places the dental implant may say that several months of healing are required before restoring the tooth and you want something to wear during the healing time so that you can keep on smiling!

 

 

Along with missing the front teeth, there is also a significant loss of bone!

Along with missing the front teeth, there is also a significant loss of bone!

 

Dental implants have been placed in the positions of the central and lateral incisor.  There is significant loss of bone and tissue.

Dental implants have been placed in the positions of the central and lateral incisor. There is significant loss of bone and tissue.

 

Pink porcelain has been added in place of the missing gun tissue here.

Pink porcelain has been added in place of the missing gun tissue here.

Sometimes a treatment partial can be used while the tissue and bone heals around the dental implant.  One disadvantage of treatment partials is that they may compress the tissue in an unfavorable way over the healing dental implant site.  Your dentist may then want to create for you a custom Snap On Smile or Essix splint.  Both of these fit over your existing teeth and replace the missing tooth or teeth.  Because they are supported by your teeth and do not rest on the gum tissue, they can be used before and after the dental implant is placed until a more permanent restoration can be fabricated.

A Snap-on Smile fits over the remaining teeth and replaces the missing tooth.

A Snap-on Smile fits over the remaining teeth and replaces the missing tooth.

 

A Snap-on Smile fits over the remaining teeth and replaces the missing tooth.

A Snap-on Smile fits over the remaining teeth and replaces the missing tooth.

So, don’t panic!  We can fix that!

Our office is located in Grand Junction, Colorado.  Our office’s website is https://www.juliegillisdds.com/ if you would like further information on this or many other dental topics!   Also, please find us on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/juliegillisddspc) to see some fun photos and to “like” us  We would love that!

Sincerely,

Julie Gillis DDS

Restoring Smiles/Restoring Health

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What Would YOU Do To Replace A Missing Tooth?

February 18, 2014

What Would YOU Do To Replace A Missing Tooth?

 

Having a missing tooth can be very embarrassing!  We have seen some pretty innovative ways to fill in the gap left by a missing tooth but this was a new one for our office!

The toilet tissue tooth!

The toilet tissue tooth!

 

When we first saw this patient, the upper left lateral incisor was extremely loose and protruding towards the lip.  The patient refused to smile and held a hand over the protruding tooth during all conversations.  The tooth came out on its own after a couple days and the patient needed to have some replacement for the missing tooth until we could do something more permanent.  So in the meantime, the patient creatively folded toilet tissue into somewhat of a tooth form and filled the gap in the smile with this.  The patient notes a need to  replace the tissue several times daily!

Severe periodontal disease and the Tissue Tooth!

Severe periodontal disease and the Tissue Tooth!

 

Sometimes people with missing teeth– with or without periodontal disease – are embarrassed about their mouth to a point that it is difficult to even come to a dental office.  Please don’t be afraid to go to your dentist to see what your options are!  In our office, we believe every person has many reasons for having their teeth in their current condition when they arrive at our office.  By making an appointment and walking in our door they have taken the first step to see what can be done about their missing tooth or teeth or any dental concern, even if that is just to get out of pain.  We have been in practice in Grand Junction, Colorado for over 20 years.  (Almost 24 years if you are counting!) In that time we have helped a lot of people improve their oral conditions and not be afraid to come to the dentist.  This can be life changing!  We want you to feel as comfortable as possible coming to see us,  and we will  try to present several options until we find the dental solution that is right for you.  Our phone number is (970) 242-3635.