Microscopes in dentistry have been in use since the 1960’s. It is surprising, however, how few dental offices employ this simple technology. Every infection that we treat at Dental Solutions is evaluated under a 400-1000 power microscope. We have yet to see a root canal treated tooth that is NOT infected! We can also see what effect(s) the infection is having on surrounding tissues. There are few things more motivating than seeing what is swimming around in the mouth!
This clip was made by dabbing the saliva next to a deep periodontal pocket (gum disease). The corkscrew-looking bacteria are called “spirochetes,” and they can burrow into tissue. They are in the same family of bacteria that cause syphilis. The microbes that infect the mouth can be life-threatening.
This clip was made from an infected tooth. It shows red blood cells that have been infected by some type of bacteria. Normal red blood cells do not have anything in them. Infected red blood cells have dark structure(s) inside. Also present in this slide sample are MANY macrophages. Macrophages are a type of immune cell that cleans up the blood. These large cells are full of bacteria (small black dots). This patient also suffers from heart disease. Dr. Levy presents medical research in his book that shows the SAME bacteria present in arterial plaque samples from around the heart as those bacteria found in infected root canal treated teeth.
When treating oral infection, it is important to know what we are treating. For this reason, the microscope has become an invaluable tool to help patients get better.
This clip was made from wiping an extracted root canal treated tooth root on a glass slide, then magnified 400x. It shows the large numbers of parasites feeding on the infected root canal treated tooth cells, as well as white blood cells trying to ward off the infection. This tooth had just been retreated (received ANOTHER root canal therapy after the first one “failed”) by an endodontist, but still continued to be painful. In spite of her stating that the tooth was still excruciatingly painful, the dentist dismissed the patient, saying there was nothing more he could do for her.
This clip shows innumerable bacteria from a root canal treated tooth in a patient with heart disease. Dr. Tom Levy, renowned cardiologist, has shown medical research connecting root canal treated teeth to heart disease and cancer.