Do you prefer homeopathy and acupuncture to antibiotics and painkillers? Would you rather opt for less invasive medical treatments, like diet and lifestyle changes, over more invasive treatments, like drugs and surgery, when possible? If you prefer a more natural approach to medicine, why wouldn't you also want to take that same natural approach when it comes to caring for your teeth? By choosing a holistic dentist, you can be sure that your preferences when it comes to your medical care are also reflected in your dental care. Check out a few good reasons why holistic dental care might be right for you.
You Want to Avoid Fluoride Treatments
You may be aware that the use of fluoride treatments in the dentist's office is somewhat controversial. Fluoride is everywhere – it's in public water supplies, it's in food, it's in toothpaste and mouthwash, and many dentists also add a fluoride treatment onto regular check-ups and many other procedures. But fluoride isn't necessarily harmless. Fluoride has been linked to lowered IQs in children, and some studies have found correlations between fluoride use and other conditions, like cancer, osteoporosis, and arthritis.
If you're opposed to fluoride use for yourself and your family, or if you're unsure how you feel about fluoride but would prefer not to have it pushed on you, then a holistic dentist may be the correct choice for you. The holistic philosophy is to opt for natural treatments and therapies whenever possible, and to avoid any use of a possible toxin, like fluoride.
You're Concerned about Mercury Exposure
Amalgam fillings are those silvery colored fillings that are commonly used to fill cavities in your back teeth. You may not realize that they contain mercury – as many as 72% of survey respondents in the United States weren't aware that their silver fillings contained mercury. Mercury is a neurotoxin that's associated with a variety of neurological and autoimmune disorders and mental illnesses. There are good alternatives to amalgam, like resin compounds.
You may question the need for finding a holistic dentist just to avoid amalgam fillings. It's true that most dentists will give you a choice of fillings; they won't use amalgam in your mouth if you don't want them to. The real reason that you need a holistic dentist is to avoid mercury vapors. If your dentist offers amalgam fillings, then you could potentially be exposed to mercury vapors just from being in the office while they work on another patient. Holistic dentists avoid amalgam fillings, so you don't risk mercury exposure just by visiting the office.
You Prefer Preventative Care to Restorative Treatment
Much of modern medicine focuses on fixing things that are wrong, rather than preventing illnesses or system breakdown in the first place. The same is true of dentistry – despite regular check-ups and cleaning, the majority of the time most dentists spend with their patients is spent fixing things – cavities, infections, misalignments, and more. Considerably less time is spent on preventing these problems in the first place.
At a holistic dental clinic, you'll find that prevention comes first. Your dentist will help you learn ways to keep your teeth healthy beyond just cleaning them properly. For example, many holistic dentists believe that dietary changes can help keep your teeth strong and prevent decay. They may recommend cutting refined foods out of your diet and replacing them with fresh seafood, fresh produce, and milk and meat from grass-fed animals in an effort to strengthen your enamel and fight plaque. A holistic dentist will also make sure that you're aware of the effect your dental health has on the rest of your body. As the word "holistic" implies, a holistic dentist is concerned with your overall health, not just your oral health.
Holistic dental care isn't the right choice for everyone. But if you've had questions about fluoridation or mercury, or if you're tired of fixing problems as they come up rather than stopping them from coming up in the first place, it might be the right choice for you. A holistic dentist in your area can give you more information so that you can make an informed choice.
For more information about your dental care options, contact a local dentist or read more here.