The power of your oral health to impact your overall health has been proven in research studies for decades. But traditional dentists still only provide dental treatments for your mouth and teeth. Now, more and more doctors and dentists are entering the realm of holistic dentistry. Holistic dentistry, also known as biological dentistry, takes into account a person’s entire state of physical and emotional health. But beware. There are some “natural” dentists out there that claim to be holistic but actually only peddle some natural herbs or supplements, continuing to conduct dental procedures just like traditionalists. If you’re looking for, or think you’ve, found a holistic dentist in the La Mesa area, take a look at these seven signs that may prove you actually found a real holistic dentist.
#1: Holistic Dentists Say No To Fluoride
As you probably know, most traditional dentists make fluoride treatments a regular part of your six-month check-ups, encourage you to make sure you water is fluoridated and even recommend fluoride drops for infants. They’ll show you the research that shows you get fewer cavities if your water is fluoridated. If you’ve found a holistic dentist, you’ll find they won’t recommend fluoride. Holistic dentists will show you research that says fluoride provides no benefit and that it has been linked to cancer and weakening bones, reduces a child’s IQ, can lead to white spots on the teeth, and can harm the thyroid.
#2: Holistic Dentists Use Different Filling Materials
If you’re seeing a holistic dentist for a filling, you won’t find the traditional amalgam material being used. Amalgam is a combination of metals that include silver, mercury, tin, and copper. Dentists have been using it to fill cavities for more than 150 years. But holistic dentists like Dr. Chan at Smilehaven Dental Center know that mercury and the vapors it produces could be harmful to both their patients and their staff. Instead, they use resin, plastic, and other materials for tooth fillings. Furthermore, what type of material they use depends on the results of a biocompatibility test to find out which material is best suited to your body. Holistic dentists believe what goes into your mouth could affect your whole body so this step is important in determining what materials they use for fillings and also dental bridges and crowns.
#3: Holistic Dentists Use X-Rays Sparingly
It’s no secret that X-rays emit radiation and that radiation has been linked to cancer. It’s also imperative that a dentist is able to see all surfaces of your teeth. Imaging of your teeth and mouth is helpful for identifying:
- Cavities (tooth decay)
- Jaw disorders
- Bone irregularities
- Unerupted teeth (teeth that are under the surface of the gums)
While many traditional dentists take X-rays of your teeth every six months, a holistic dentist will use X-rays more cautiously and often use other techniques to visualize your teeth. At Smilehaven Dental Center, Dr. Chan uses digital X-rays which are about 50 percent lower in radiation on average than the previous generation of X-ray machines. Most agree that the limited exposure to this low-level radiation is not a significant detriment to your health, but dentists are still searching for new advancements in imaging that eliminate exposure at all. Some of these options include near-infrared imaging, where an infrared light makes the tooth enamel look transparent; thermal imaging, where a heat map shows infection; and 3D ultrasound that shows the teeth, gums, fillings, and cracks in full color.
#4: Holistic Dentists Use Natural Options For Pain
At some point, you may be faced with having a dental surgical procedure. Traditional dentists will administer a full dose of chemical anesthesia to put you to “sleep” during the surgery. Afterward, they will prescribe an antibiotic to ward off infection and opioid painkillers to help subside any pain. If you have a holistic dentist, you can expect a much different scenario. Dr. Chan will administer homeopathy drops instead of drugs before your surgical procedure so that you don’t have to have as much painkiller during the operation. After the surgery, Dr. Chan will prescribe a natural vitamin C product that will help you maximize the healing process. He may also send you home with an infrared device that will emit heat waves to your mouth to speed up healing.
#5: Holistic Dentists Take Out Your Wisdom Teeth Less Often
Over two-thirds of cases of wisdom tooth extractions are completely unnecessary according to a study published in the American Journal of Public Health. Of the approximately 5 million people who endure wisdom tooth extraction each year, 11,000 suffer what’s called “permanent paresthesia”. This is a fancy name for numbness of the lip, tongue, and cheek resulting from nerve damage during surgery. For holistic dentists, wisdom teeth should only be taken out if they are causing a serious health issue for you. If and when they are taken out, Dr. Chan is very careful to not create a cavity or hole of infection in the bone.
Find Your Holistic Dentist In La Mesa
If you are looking for a holistic dentist, look no further than Dr. Chan at Smilehaven Dental Center in La Mesa. Dr. Chan does not treat you head as separate from the rest of your body, but instead, considers your whole health as he diagnosis and recommends dental treatment that you may need. Take some time to find out more about this growing dental industry. Make a list of questions and then give Dr. Chan a call at (619) 464-2801 for a free one-on-one consultation. He and his team are happy to answer all of your questions and, most importantly, get started on providing you with a healthy mouth and body.