What is Holistic Dentistry?

Portrait,Of,Female,Patient,Smiling,In,Dental,Clinic

Dental care is not something you want to play around with. Millions neglect their teeth and gums only to develop crippling health issues later in life, such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.

Taking care of your teeth should be a top priority. Traditional dentistry is an integral part of your health. Still, dental patients today are becoming more aware of the effects of specific chemical agents on their general health and well-being. More are becoming aware that dental care also affects the rest of their body.

That’s where holistic dentistry comes in.

Also known as biological dentistry, this branch of dentistry uses alternative dental care methods not typically used by conventional dentists. It gets its name by focusing on your entire body’s health instead of just dental or oral care. When a tooth is infected, the bacteria can affect the mouth, teeth, gums, and the entire body. A holistic dentist can treat the infected tooth, gums, and whole body. They will not stop at simply solving your dental issues.

What Do Holistic Dentists Do?

A holistic dentist, first and foremost, is a licensed medical professional. They believe that dental health is connected to overall health. They have a degree and license and have a great understanding of the prevention of the most common dental issues, as well as diverse treatment options to help their patients. A holistic dentist uses natural treatments over traditional methods that can be harsh on some patients. Holistic dentistry is based on the belief that patients can be safely and effectively treated with biological approaches that mimic nature.

Differences From a Traditional Dentist

Both types of dentists follow the same guidelines of the American Dental Association. They are held to the same standard and fill the same professional role. The differences between the two start with how they handle dental care treatment. A holistic dentist favors biologic dentistry or the use of non-toxic restorative materials. This and their patient education provide a complete long-term care package. A short-term fix for the mouth will only get you another visit to the dentist at a later date. And in some cases, the problem may be worse than before. Holistic dentists are just as much educators as treaters.

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How Does Holistic Dentistry Differ From Traditional Dentistry?

Traditional dentistry only focuses on the aspects of oral care, including the teeth, gums, and jaws.

Sometimes, these treatment areas extend to the head or neck in select procedures. This is most apparent in the remedy of solutions such as temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders, which cause consistent headaches. But traditional dentistry doesn’t go beyond that.

Holistic dentistry, on the other hand, goes beyond the mouth and jaws to treat the whole body and uses alternative practices and products that can improve your entire body’s health.

Holistic dentists may specialize in mercury amalgam removal, snoring problems, headaches, anxiety, as well as sleep issues. Many of these problems and conditions are often related to poor oral health or habits.

A holistic dentist may urge more environmentally-friendly bamboo bathroom products, including toothbrushes, and prompt you to avoid chemical-packed mouthwashes, opting for all-natural mouth rinses. And instead of investing in expensive dental procedures, your practitioner may introduce you to aromatherapy.

What Kind of Treatments Are Used in Holistic Dentistry?

As explained above, holistic dentistry uses a variety of treatments to treat your overall physical health.

These approaches might sound out of the box when you think of them in a dentistry-exclusive setting. But when you understand their overall effects on your body and their subsequent benefits to oral health, it all falls into line.

Some of the treatment modalities used in holistic dentistry include:

  • Alternative Dental Products. These include non-chemical and primarily natural products to maintain your oral hygiene and the visual appearance of your teeth.
  • Herbology. A range of herbs can be used instead of traditional medicines with their side effects and harsh impact on the body. Herbs have no side effects and improve one’s body health.
  • Dietary Changes. This encourages modifications in your diet instead of invasive procedures to relieve oral disease symptoms.
  • Aromatherapy. This includes using different scents and aromas to help relieve and prevent certain dental diseases.
  • Alternative materials. Instead of silver or mercury fillings or plastic crowns, holistic dentists use porcelain. This is a durable, biocompatible, and non-toxic material. The idea is to help the dental work seamlessly adhere to your DNA.
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What Are the Benefits of Holistic Dentistry?

Holistic dentistry has presented many benefits for its users over the years. They are especially noteworthy if you want to focus on an all-natural remedy or an all-encompassing solution to oral health.

Usage of Natural Materials

Perhaps the most significant advantage of holistic dentistry is the broader use of natural materials that provide long-term benefits. For example, as alluded to above, a holistic practitioner may advise you to use a bamboo charcoal toothbrush, which uses activated charcoal to help absorb germs causing bad breath and other issues. They may also ask you to consider a more natural mouthwash and toothpaste. Avoiding harsh chemicals in your dental products can boost your overall health, too.

Minimal Use of Invasive Procedures

Instead of using surgery as the first line of treatment for every other problem, holistic dentistry first considers using alternative therapies to alleviate your issue. Dietary changes can be presented as a solution for yellowing teeth instead of asking you to get dental veneers.

Healthier Lifestyle Practices

Since holistic dentistry focuses on your whole-body health through herbology and aromatherapy, you might discover a broad sense of well-being as you practice this alternative healthcare model. This goes a long way if you want to improve your overall health and not just oral hygiene.

Is Holistic Dentistry Expensive? 

Holistic dentistry is no more expensive than traditional dentistry. In some cases, it can even be less costly. If a patient follows the dentist’s instructions in the letter, they are less likely to need a return trip to the office. Since a holistic dentist is concerned about overall health, this has a more significant impact on stopping chronic health issues.

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Overall, holistic dentistry advocates focusing on your complete physical health rather than just paying attention to the appearance of your teeth. As a result, you not only sport healthy pearly whites but also benefit from the more substantial gains of a well-rounded healthcare practice.

References:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9374842/

https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/oral-health/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4606594/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6474177/

https://www.webmd.com/oral-health/features/link-sleep-apnea-dentist

https://www.ada.org/about/press-releases/american-dental-association-foundation-kicks-off-the-21st-year-of-give-kids-a-smile

https://www.nextavenue.org/how-to-promote-oral-health-for-people-with-diabetes/

https://www.nidcr.nih.gov/health-info/tmd

https://seekbamboo.com/

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