Does the Amazon Hold the Natural Key to End Dental Pain?Friday, January 4th, 2013, 5:34 pm
An Amazon plant used by the ancient Incans as a toothache remedy could be a new, natural, weapon against dental pain. The first two phases of clinical trials for the remedy which is derived from the Acmella Oleracea plant have proven highly successful.
A Cambridge University anthropologist, Dr. Francoise Barbira Freedman, is leading the effort to bring this natural pain killer to the commercial market. Most dentists currently prescribe non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) to fight dental pain. A natural alternative would be a welcome choice for many patients.
According to Dr. Freedman, “The story began in 1975 when I first went to live among the indigenous people of Peru. We were trekking through the rainforest and I was having terrible trouble with my wisdom teeth. One of the men with me noticed and prepared a little wad of plants to bite onto. The pain went away.”
Dr. Freedman said she forgot about the incident for many years until a neuroscientist colleague asked her to bring some medicinal plant samples back from Peru. “Almost as an afterthought I remembered to include the one I’d used on my teeth. It was added to the bottom of the list, but somehow the list got reversed and it was the first one tested back in the UK. It was immediately successful and we’ve never looked back.”
Dr. Freedman said “We think the remedy is better than current treatments because NSAID drugs are systemic and have long-term effects; the plant product is not systemic and does not have any known side effects.” The plant is being made into a gel that is applied to the mouth and works by blocking nerve endings.
Research like this also shows us all how important saving these parts of our planet can be. You never know where the next drug to cure a fatal disease could come from so we should all support conservation of our natural world.
Until we have this new product the best way to avoid dental pain is to maintain good oral health care at home and visit your dentist regularly for check-ups and cleanings. Please contact Wilbanks Smile Center in Toccoa, GA today at 706-886-9439 to find out more about our preventive dentistry and to schedule your next appointment.
Category: oral health