Why You Should Beg, Borrow or Steal that Baby Tooth Back from the Tooth Fairy!
Our children’s baby teeth (like umbilical cords although less controversial) contain stem cells that can cure diseases and grow replacement tissue and bones in the body.
If you can collect and store them, those baby teeth can potentially be used to treat diseases that might arise when your child gets older – or even for close family members with serious illness.
Scientists and doctors alike are now suggesting parents keep their children’s baby teeth.
- If your child is diagnosed with certain types of cancer, the stem cells in their baby teeth could potentially save their life.
- In addition, stem cells are now widely used to treat diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s, with the sufferers usually having to rely on a compatible bone marrow donor.
If you can save your child’s baby teeth in such a way that the stem cells within them remain viable, you will most likely be able to use them in times of extreme medical need.
Is there any drawback?
Unfortunately when the tooth fairy collects the tooth in the dead of night, from under your child’s pillow, that tooth starts to deteriorate.
The highest quantity and quality of stem cells will come from teeth that maintain a blood supply until they are harvested. While the tooth that falls out naturally is lovely for the tooth fairy, it is not the best for stem cell banking.
It must be collected before it falls out naturally – ideally, right after the tooth starts wiggling.
It will then require special services to keep the tooth in good conditions. Various services are available to store baby teeth properly and safely.
That is the drawback.
Storing dental stem cells is very similar to storing umbilical cord stem cells
And unlike the hematopoietic stem cells from the umbilical cord (that can only develop in the blood and immune related cells), MSCs (or mesenchymal stem cells) from teeth have unlimited potential due to their pluripotency (ability to differentiate in the several cell types). Stem cells are presently being used – and of course clinical trials continue – to treat many debilitating diseases.
How does using a tooth bank work?
- When your child’s tooth or your own is extracted by a dental professional, dental stem cells are harvested from the dental pulp within the tooth.
- Baby teeth and wisdom teeth are rich in dental stem cells. These cells within the pulp are a valuable source of highly regenerative stem cells.
- These dental stem cells are preserved indefinitely by being isolated from the dental pulp and cryogenically frozen.
There is value in older teeth
Wisdom teeth are one of the most viable sources of stem cells – so teens and twenties often have a second opportunity for their teeth to be saved and stored. These cells can be stored and remain viable for at least twenty two years or longer.