By, Dr. Kerris Dillon
The search for stem cells has been difficult, but in 2003 scientists found stem cells in old baby teeth. If there is pulp left in the baby tooth (or teeth), this can be used to fight against certain forms of cancer, regenerate tissue, as well as fix future dental issues. Stem cells are cells that have not had a role directed to them, yet. We have cells all over our bodies for different functions like skin cells, blood cells, nerve cells, and thousands more. Before a cell gets its instructions from DNA and other sources, it is called a stem cell. What is so valuable about stem cells are that when given directions, they can become the healthy cells we would like them to be. This could eventually eradicate some forms of cancer.
So, you might be wondering if your adult teeth have these same stem cells and the answer is no. Baby teeth are unique just like an umbilical cord is unique. The stem cells gathered from the umbilical cord also have lifesaving properties and stem cells that individuals can save. Unfortunately, companies in the U.S. are asking for thousands of dollars to save baby’s umbilical cords. The stem cells that were discovered from baby teeth were not preserved, but still had some pulp, which meant they still had stem cells. Corporations began jumping all over “saving and preserving baby teeth” after hearing this scientific news. It is so frustrating that there is such a high degree of greed in the United States. I do not have the money to preserve my children’s baby teeth or their umbilical cord, but I am keeping all their baby teeth (just in case).
I know from one poor mom to another, you might have not heard this information so I wanted to share. God forbid something horrible happens or you get news you don’t want to hear. Anything that could potentially save a child’s life is important to pass along. Thankfully, I still have my own baby teeth that my mother saved. She didn’t know it at the time what she was doing, but I suppose it is kind of strange that I still have them. My husband thought it was exceptionally strange, but now I feel a little bit more comforted by keeping them. I hope this information helps someone in the world and please share this with any other mother or father with children that they adore and love to the ends of the Earth.