The drilling, the scraping and the sheer pain of getting a filling in your tooth could be a thing of the past thanks to a new gel developed by French scientists, the Daily Mail reported.
A team of scientists from the National Institute for Health and Medical Research in Paris say the gel can help decaying teeth grow back by prompting cells to start multiplying.
In laboratory studies, they tested to see if melanocyte-stimulating hormone, or MSH, could stimulate tooth growth. The team then mixed MSH with a chemical called poly-L-glutamic acid to create a gel, which they rubbed on cells taken from extracted human teeth.
In another experiment, they rubbed the gel on the teeth of mice with dental cavities. And the scientists said it took less than one month to restore teeth back to their original state.
“There are a lot of exciting developments in this field, of which this is one,” said professor Damien Walmsley, the British Dental Association's scientific adviser. “It looks promising, but we will have to wait for the results to come back from clinical trials and its use will be restricted to treating small areas of dental decay.”
The gel is slated to undergo more testing, but it could be showing up in your dentist’s office in the next three to five years, according to the report.
The findings are published in the American Chemical Society journal ACS Nano.