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Posts Tagged ‘jaw pain’

Stem Cells to Relieve Mouth and Face Pain?

In TMJ on July 12, 2011 at 4:30 AM

With technological advancements come new ways for the dental and medical communities to figure out how to make – and keep – us healthy. The application of stem cells for use in medicine has long been a pointed subject, sure to generate a debate even amongst the most impartial audience.

Dental stem cells, and the use or application of them in dentistry or medicine is not a debate we’re looking to sow here. Rather, we just aim to highlight the recent advancements in stem cell application that can benefit us, as dental patients.

Research into the harvesting and application of dental stem cells is still a relatively new field of study.

Some scientists, researchers, and doctors say we should run right out and start banking our stem cells wherever possible. Others of the same ilk recommend we wait for more research to prove the long-term viability of collecting and using dental stem cells.

Fact is, the use of dental stem cells has not yet been approved by the FDA. Until these two divergent politically influenced sectors of the stem cell argument join forces to improve health care rather than increase health care propaganda, we as the dental patient public are held in limbo.

Will dental stem cells enable us to instantaneously relieve pain, or generate a new tooth in a petri dish?

According to this article on stem cells and dentistry published last week from DentistryIQ;  Research from Boston University Henry M. Goldman School of Dental Medicine shows for the first time that a particular type of stem cell, bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BMMSCs), can suppress orofacial pain rapidly — within one day of treatment — by either IV injection of cells or direct injection of cells to the injured site.

That sounds like very promising – although admittedly preliminary – results.

The DentistryIQ article goes on to mention how, in rat models, the pain never came back after stem cell injection. But in the untreated group, the pain lasted up to 22 weeks, or the length of the experimental period.

The Boston University Henry M. Goldman School of Dental Medicine researchers simulated two types of pain: myogenic pain (by ligating, or tying up, the masticatory muscle tendon) and neuropathic pain (by tying up the nerve on the face).

Stem cells successfully reduced pain in both cases.

As noted in the article you can read here, clinical trials to treat recalcitrant orofacial pain is the next step toward the widespread application of what could be the biggest dental breakthrough since the invention of the toothbrush.

For more dental stem cell info, click over to this article on stem cells and dentistry, written by Bruce
G. Freund, DDS.

You can also click here to see the wealth of stem cell info provided by the National Institute of Health!

How’s Your Posture?

In Dental Care on November 18, 2010 at 4:00 AM

If you resemble a question mark rather than an exclamation point, we need to talk.

Poor posture is a result of lots of things; stress, maybe injury, or possibly just being chained to a desk all day long. According to the AGD, our poor posture could have a lot to do with causing headaches, jaw pain, and even TMJ disorders.

You never thought your dentist would be commenting on your posture, did you?

Poor posture places the spine in a position that causes stress to the jaw joint. When people slouch or hunch over, the lower jaw shifts forward, causing the upper and lower teeth to not fit together properly, and the skull moves back on the spinal column.

This movement puts stress on muscles, joints and bones and, if left untreated, can create pain and inflammation in muscles and joints when the mouth opens and closes.

“Good posture is important, yet many people don’t realize how posture affects their oral health,” says AGD spokesperson Ludwig Leibsohn, DDS.

What Do You Do For Migraines?

In Dental Care on November 16, 2010 at 4:00 AM

If you are unfortunate enough to know what a migraine feels like, you know it’s debilitating. Often times nothing can make it go away, maybe some rest in dark silent room – maybe some Excedrin or other pain relief that is only treating the symptoms.

Have you ever thought that your migraines can be caused by the alignment (or misalignment) of your jaw?

According to ICNR (International Center for Nutritional Research), approximately 45 million Americans suffer from chronic headaches, and of them, 28 million suffer from migraines. To the chronic migraine headache sufferer, headaches can mean more than sheer physical torture –they can disrupt work, destroy weekend plans, and even put a strain on marriage and relationships with family and friends. Statistically more woman get migraines than men. Twenty-five percent of women and 8% of men get migraines sometime in their lifetime.

Be sure to let us know on your next visit if you suffer from migraines – and let us know how you treat them. As we’ll keep preaching, all the technology and information being shared allows your dentist to construct a more complete health care picture.