Autoimmune diseases are hard to understand. It is hard to understand why the body would consider its own parts to be foreign and attack it. There are, however, underlying causes that would make a body attack itself such as with dental resorption.
- Dental resorption refers to a condition wherein the body identifies the tooth as a foreign object and start attacking it.
- There are many causes that can start the process of resorption, the most common is substantial injury to the tooth or its root.
- In order to heal, the body destroys the broken parts of the tooth or root.
- With dental resorption, the damage can be so severe that the body starts to attack the healthy or intact tooth.
- There are two types of dental resorption, internal and external.
- External resorption refers to an attack of the root’s external edges, slowly dissolving it, and weakening the tooth base. Eventually, the tooth will also weaken and fall victim to resorption.
- Internal resporption is a much serious condition wherein the root is destroyed and resorption occurs with the pulp of the tooth, destroying the tooth from the inside out.
- Treatment is available for dental resorption.
Tooth Resorption Causes
Different precipitating factors can cause dental resorption to occur. The following are some of the identified causes:
- Pressure-induced – dental resorption can be caused by pressure being applied to the tooth. This can come in the form of a blow or injury to the tooth or a tooth that erupts in the wrong place. Pressure-induced dental resorption is typically non-infectious and short-lived.
- Infection-induced – dental resorption can also be caused by bacterial infection. An underlying infection can weaken the root of the tooth, causing resorption.
- Trauma-induced – is also another non-infectious cause of dental resorption that can occur from orthodontic devices, mechanical displacements, surgical, thermal, or chemical trauma, and progressive replacement of alveolar bone.
- Other causes – include improper dental hygiene or lack of proper dental care.
Tooth Resorption Symptoms
Dental resorption isn’t just identified through symptoms. In fact, a definitive diagnosis of dental resorption is through a dental exam and review of dental history.
- The main symptom of dental resorption is loosening of the damaged tooth.
- The damaged tooth can be so severely affected that it eventually falls off.
- Other symptoms include are telltale signs of a damaged tooth such as:
- a dull ache
- discoloration of the tooth
- bad breath
- A dental history that involves:
- Presence of orthodontic devices
- Prior dental surgery or treatments
- Trauma or injury to the tooth
Tooth Resorption Treatment
It is important to treat cases of dental resorption as early as it is identified to prevent the loss of the tooth. Severely damaged tooth can be lost.
- Treating the infection – if a bacterial infection is present, this would have to be treated usually with calcium hydroxide combined with possible root canal therapy.
- Root Canal – a root canal is the most common type of treatment for dental resorption. The dentist makes a small passage into the pulp cavity and sucks out the infected material. The cavity is then filled and the dentist seals the hole and crowns the tooth.
- Erecting internal barriers – this is done to prevent further dental resorption from occurring.
- Follow-up check-ups – is important to see if resorption has taken place again.