The curious collection of a slightly mad scientist
Yes, it is possible to repair and even regrow your teeth using a completely natural method that is actually based on science. A team of Alberta researchers applied for a patent that claims they created a miniature device that will stimulate the jaw bones and gums around the affected tooth. Using the low intensity ultrasound technology, they claim they were able to regrow the root of a tooth and stimulate tooth grow and repair.
Although the technology is not going to be in your local dental office for a few years, I believe we don’t have to wait for it and apply the common sense to do the whole process ourselves. First, we need a low frequency ultrasound source and from all the legally (you can’t buy a real ultrasound machine unless you are a doctor) available sources two come to mind.
First is a Novasonic Massager that can generate a sound vibration of 20,000 Hertz. It is not your regular massager and all you have to do is slightly touch the skin and you can feel the sound waves go deep within your body. I have one myself and love using it.
Second device is more sophisticated and you can find them selling on Ebay. The link searches for the Ebay results for “ultrasound massager” and you will see a bunch of them selling from $100 to $150. They are much more powerful then a Novasonic model and can generate up to 3-5 mHz frequency, so be very careful when using one. You should get one that generates only 1-2 mHz, as 3-5 mHz vibrations don’t go very far – about 1/8″-1/4″ deep.
So, what I do is I apply the sound waves from the device to my teeth and gums for a few minutes every day and get a gentle but thorough massage this way.
I have a tooth I’d like to regrow. Has this worked for anyone? I want to do this so if any doctors know of cancer risks from ultrasounding your tooth roots and jaw, speak up. Or if the people in Alberta have any tips based on their research, let us know. This from Science Daily:
ScienceDaily (June 28, 2006) — Hockey players, rejoice! A team of University of Alberta researchers has created technology to regrow teeth – the first time scientists have been able to reform human dental tissue. … Using low-intensity pulsed ultrasound (LIPUS), Dr. Tarak El-Bialy from the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry and Drs. Jie Chen and Ying Tsui from the Faculty of Engineering have created a miniaturized system-on-a-chip that offers a non-invasive and novel way to stimulate jaw growth and dental tissue healing.
“It’s very exciting because we have shown the results and actually have something you can touch and feel that will impact the health of people in Canada and throughout the world,” said Chen, who works out of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the National Institute for Nanotechnology.
The wireless design of the ultrasound transducer means the miniscule device will be able to fit comfortably inside a patient’s mouth while packed in biocompatible materials. The unit will be easily mounted on an orthodontic or “braces” bracket or even a plastic removable crown. The team also designed an energy sensor that will ensure the LIPUS power is reaching the target area of the teeth roots within the bone. TEC Edmonton, the U of A’s exclusive tech transfer service provider, filed the first patent recently in the U.S. Currently, the research team is finishing the system-on-a-chip and hopes to complete the miniaturized device by next year.
“If the root is broken, it can now be fixed,” said El-Bialy. “And because we can regrow the teeth root, a patient could have his own tooth rather than foreign objects in his mouth.” – ScienceDaily
That was years ago. I’ve written to ask for an update. Here is Dr. El-Bialy’s profile including his current work. Here is the patent application for the ultrasound device that can regrow teeth. Ultrasound works to regrow teeth according to this site which does not seem to have been recently updated:
This is about our eighteen month test of using LIPUS to regrow pulp and dentin at an accelerated rate for mature and senior people. The process invigorates the inside of our teeth for increased healthier tissue. The added growth of dentin bolsters the enamel as it was when you were a younger person. In addition to the above an increase of density in mandible bone and upper tooth support solidifies tooth roots. Our experience shows a solid bite equal to that in our teenage years. The ringing of teeth when biting down hard, which we had forgotten entirely, was back again. Professor Paul Sharpe, Head of the Department of Craniofacial Development, King’s College London stated: “A key medical advantage of this new technology is that a living tooth can preserve the health of the surrounding tissues much better than artificial prosthesis. Teeth are living, and they are able to respond to a person’s bite. They move, and in doing so they maintain the health of the surrounding gums and teeth.”
At the present time our technology is at the stage where regrowing teeth is limited to teeth with live roots. The inner part of the tooth, dentin is alive and in regrowing will expand into its initial, youthful proportions. The dentin thereby puts equal pressure on the Enamel part of the tooth as in the younger person. This naturally recurring rejuvenation has a propensity to expel such parts of the tooth enamel which have previously been broken, which may result in its loss. Our experience is based on our use of this methodology and equipment and is now in its third year. Any person planning to use this Canadian LIPUS technique can inquire with questions to our test section. – hopp , lipus.org
There are many sonic massagers online but will any do the job?
A caution I found about ultrasound:
Ultrasound is actually used in surgery to cut through tissue – it is especially helpful in hepatic resections where it cuts parenchyma but spares vessels for individual ligation and division. So ultrasound is not necessarily as benign as might appear at first blush. Need much more data before I’d aim a unit at my skull. Link
It makes sense to me that a little physical damage would trigger regrowth, but this is something you’d want the benefit of research in determining what works and what is safe.
Here are the technical specs that seem best for regrowing teeth:
Low-intensity pulsed ultrasound (LIPUS) is a medical technology, generally using 1.5 MHz frequency pulses, with a pulse width of 200 μs, repeated at 1 kHz, at a spatial average and temporal average intensity of 30 mW/cm2, 20 minutes/day.
Applications of LIPUS include:
Promoting bone-fracture healing.
Treating orthodontically induced root resorption.
Regrow missing teeth.
Enhancing mandibular growth in children with hemifacial microsomia.
Promoting healing in various soft tissues such as cartilage, inter vertebral disc.
Improving muscle healing after laceration injury.
Researchers at the University of Alberta have used LIPUS to gently massage teeth roots and jawbones to cause growth or regrowth, and have grown new teeth in rabbits after lower jaw surgical lengthening (Distraction osteogenesis) (American Journal of Orthodontics, 2002). As of June 2006, a larger device has been licensed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Health Canada for use by orthopedic surgeons. A smaller device that fits on braces has also been developed but is still in the investigational stage and is not available to the public.