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What is Holistic Dentistry?

Introduction

Conventional dentistry involves the prevention of dental disease - primarily decay and gum disease and the treatment of their sequellae. For example, poor plaque control leads to decay. If this isn’t treated while at this early stage the decay spreads to the nerve, causing pain and nerve death. Conventional root canal treatment removes the nerve (and hence the feeling of pain) and blood supply to allow you to keep the tooth.

The holistic approach would be to question whether to "save" this tooth at all costs or consider its impact upon the rest of the body. We are of the opinion that conventional dentistry can create more problems. In the prior example such teeth are a chronic site of infection and release endotoxins which can impact upon the immune system. Additionally this tooth can affect an organ system due to each tooth relating to different parts of the body via meridians and disrupt that normal healthy functioning (see chart). For example, a dead front tooth in a woman can commonly disrupt the genito-urinary system and knee.

Therefore dental procedures that look and feel good when the mouth is the only consideration can be harmful to one’s health and the link may not be obvious.

Dentists are the world’s biggest implanters of foreign materials into the body. An holistic dentist takes some simple steps to minimise such impact.

A common example of this is to have dental materials allergy tested before insertion. If you are allergic to the filling material, it is an allergy that can’t be avoided or passed (like a food allergy) and it will impact upon your health until it is removed.

As a consequence of the broader view of dentistry, many additional modalities such as homeopathy, electroacupuncture diagnosis, antioxidant therapy, osteopathy, etc are used to minimise the impact of dentistry on the body.

Specifically there are several main categories of dental problems that can impact on health: