It’s an odd idea, but could brushing and flossing prevent stomach aches and migraines? Is oral hygiene really key to maintaining a balanced personal ecosystem?
Poor oral health has been linked to everything from heart disease to cancer. Men with gingivitis are more than 50% more likely to develop pancreatic cancer. Gum disease has also been connected to increased risk of diabetes, osteoporosis, and pneumonia.
Brushing and flossing regularly is a good way to attack mouth bacteria, but it may not eradicate the root of the problem. Holistic dentists have several methods of bringing the entire body back into alignment.
Treating Systems, Not Symptoms
Traditional dentists and biological dentists receive the same training before they start their practices. The difference is that biological or holistic dentists take a slightly different approach to diagnosis and treatment.
A traditional dentist might diagnose gingivitis or fill a cavity without asking the patient further questions. A biological dentist, on the other hand, would diagnose oral conditions and then ask about the patient’s lifestyle and diet.
All foods are not created equal. To maintain good oral hygiene and fight gum disease, only some foods make the grade. Here are a few key nutrients for oral health.
- Collagen. The body uses collagen to fight inflammation caused by gum disease, often resulting in depleted levels. Good sources of collagen are garlic, berries, and chicken.
- Vitamin C. This vitamin strengthens the immune system, allowing the body to fight off further infection. Vitamin C is found in citrus fruits, strawberries, broccoli, and potatoes.
- Beta carotene. Carrots are a great source of beta carotene, a provitamin that the body translates into Vitamin A. Beta carotene is also in spinach, sweet potatoes, and cantaloupe.
Gum disease can strike anyone, but smokers are particularly vulnerable. They have double the risk of the average nonsmoker of getting the disease. People who smoke may not respond to treatment.
People with heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and Alzheimer’s are all at higher risk of getting gum disease. This points to the connection between oral health and systemic health.
Part of the problem is that people aren’t fully aware of the symptoms of gum disease. Bleeding gums, sensitive teeth, and loose teeth are all reasons to visit the dentist as soon as possible.
Consult With a Biological Dentist
Even people with good oral hygiene habits can get gum disease. Bacteria can be tenacious and sometimes medical intervention is required. Holistic dentists might prescribe a medical-grade mouthwash, regular deep cleanings, and dietary supplements.
In advanced cases of gum disease, dentists may prescribe surgery to remove deep-rooted plaque. Biological dentists make every effort to save patients’ teeth, so surgery would be a choice only if all else fails.
A good rule of thumb is to brush twice per day, floss at least once per day, and get regular deep cleanings.
An Experienced, Compassionate Dental Care Team
If the eyes are the windows to our souls, then perhaps the mouth is the gateway to good overall health. Our family here at Well Rooted Dentistry would like to get to know you and develop a plan for any dental work you may need.
We offer a comprehensive range of services including teeth whitening, veneers, and metal-free dental crowns. Our on-site oral surgeon is available for dental implants, tooth removals, and laser periodontal therapy.
Give our friendly team a call at (401) 443-4007 to schedule your first visit. We look forward to getting to know you!