Have you heard of holistic dentistry but you are not sure what it is? Holistic dentistry is the practice of taking into consideration a person’s complete health when treating their oral health, including their physical and emotional health. Some refer to this as biological dentistry. It is common for holistic dentists in wilmington north carolina to use natural treatment and therapy methods when preventing and treating oral health conditions. For those interested in learning more about holistic dentistry more information is provided below.
What are the origins of holistic dentistry?
Today, many of the most common treatment strategies used on the gums and teeth use materials that are known to be toxic. For example, a material commonly used in fillings, amalgam, is 50% mercury, and overtime can potentially cause damage to the nervous or immune system. Many people are not aware when they see the dentist what exactly the materials are made of that are going into their mouth to help maintain their teeth and gums. In 1978, due to the increased risk caused by the materials used in commonly accepted treatment practices, a group of dentists formed the Holistic Dental Association. The mission of this organization was to educate and inform dentists and the general public about ways to minimize risk using holistic dental therapy practice.
Does traditional dentistry put me at risk?
It is important to be informed about the risks involved in traditional dental practice therapies. According to research, dental amalgam fillings are the primary source of mercury exposure for the general population. If you are in need a filling, you can have a discussion with your dentist about the materials being used.
How is holistic dentistry different from traditional dentistry?
The biggest difference between holistic dentists and traditional dentists is that holistic dentists are concerned with the health of your entire body. Often holistic dentists will provide information and guidance on improving nutrition habits, smoking cessation, and reducing alcohol consumption, which are all lifestyle habits that have an impact on your oral health as well as your overall health.
Not every holistic dentist is the same or takes the same approach. Some may be ok with the use of fluoride to prevent tooth decay, while others may believe that using fluoride increases risk of cancer or bone disease. Overall, their goal is to inform their patients of the potential risks of dental practices, and to try to improve their patient’s oral health without taking a toll on their overall health. For example, a traditional dentist may believe a root canal is the best way to save a tooth that has a decaying root. A holistic dentist may be against the root canal therapy because chemicals are used within the tooth. These chemicals may increase risk or lead to long-term health effects.
In general, most holistic dentists will avoid using materials and products that have been associated with health risks, such as amalgam, nickel, or other metals. They will still perform a filling, but instead they will use composite resin, which is another material that has shown to be effective and not associated to increased risk.
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