Due to the high incidence of periodontal diseases in population, researchers are trying to find real solutions that can treat or halt this condition right from its early stages. However, periodontal diseases are extremely adaptive in nature and quite complex, given the ways they manifest from one patient to another. Although most of the bacteria in the mouth don’t cause periodontitis, those approximately 10 than do can provoke serious damage to dentition, with tooth decay being the last and most serious thing they can do.
Detection of (the risk of) periodontal disease
The traditional manner in which dentists detect the presence of bacteria between teeth and gums is by taking samples and having them analyzed in a lab. However, this procedure is not particularly safe, especially because bacteria may die instantly if exposed to the oxygen in the air. As a consequence, the results of these tests may not come out conclusive.
A team of researchers at Fraunhofer Institute for Cell Therapy and Immunology IZI, Leipzig, Germany, have developed a way to speed up the process, so that dentists would be able to diagnose this condition faster and more accurately, without the need to involve an (external) laboratory in the process.
Potential Prevention of Periodontal Diseases
Apart from regular solutions (such as antibiotics, scaling, stress reduction, and a full-range oral care), future professional methods may imply the blocking of a molecular receptor (C5aR), which is used by bacteria to avoid the immune system’s reactions. Given the fact that the number of bacteria which lead directly to this condition is small, finding the correct receptors and finding the means to accurately inhibit or block them is only a matter of time.
Blocking molecular receptors may come with a second advantage, as it may reduce the amount of antibiotics people suffering from periodontal diseases need to take. Furthermore, this may reduce the risks of other conditions or diseases that are traditionally associated to periodontitis, such as heart attack, stroke, and other cardiovascular diseases.
The reality of these solutions is only in its research stages, but, considering the importance of reducing the incidence of periodontal diseases, it may become available as professional treatments sooner than anticipated. Meanwhile, traditional treatments should be undertaken should such condition occur.