You need to find a practitioner who is willing to spend the time and effort to save a tooth. Gross says a lot of root canals are preventable if the tooth is treated with a very delicate cleaning of the decay followed by some oil of clove to calm the nerve. This can help it recover, but the patient has to be a willing participant. He adds, “Some patients just want a quick fix, leading to a resulting dead tooth.”
Holistic dentists like lasers as a treatment tool as well. In cases of inflammation and periodontal disease, Dr. Gross uses a diode (low-powered) laser to sterilize bacteria found in the gums between teeth. Dr. Pressner thinks a great cavity preventative is the sweetener xylitol, a substance found in the fibers of many fruits and vegetables. Dr. Zeines also likes xylitol, but recommends using a stimudent or proxibrush dipped in a little oregano oil (a natural antibiotic). And simply rinsing regularly with a mouthwash like Listerine can be helpful as an anti-bacterial rinse and is especially good in reducing inflammation in the mouth.
There is some disagreement over what to do with existing amalgam (silver) fillings, which many believe to be a constant source of mercury exposure. Dr. Pressner prefers to “let sleeping dogs lie,” saying, “The more times you operate on a tooth during a lifetime, the more potential problems you invite.” Dr. Zeines likes to remove old silver fillings because he believes “mercury continues to vaporize out of the tooth even if it has been in the mouth for years.” He has patients go on a special nutritional protocol a week before removing a filling and for about six months after the procedure. If you decide to remove the amalgams from your mouth, Zeines says to be sure to ask about the dentist’s protocol for protecting the patient during the removal since the process can be a source of mercury poisoning itself.
To find a dentist who practices holistic dentistry, start by asking your own health practitioner if she/he knows someone who does any of the above procedures. Most importantly, be proactive in your own dental well-being. To Your Health!
For more information:
Dr. Lewis Gross: www.holistic-dentists.com
Dr. Saul Pressner: www.newyorkcosmeticdentist.com
Dr. Victor Zeines: www.natdent.com