Holistic Dentistry, also known as biological dentistry is a modern approach to dental care. It is not a dental specialty and instead it falls under the realm of general dentistry.
Holistic dental care considers the mouth as being part of the whole body. This may sound odd to you but before this approach became popular, oral health was treated as something separate from the rest of the body entirely. Dentistry, for the longest time, was its own separate entity, apart from other forms of medical care.
In the last 20-30 years, there has been a greater awareness that dental procedures, materials and our oral health can affect our overall health as well as other parts of our body.
Holistic dentistry takes an integrated approach to dental care and medicine. The practice seeks to connect illnesses that occur in the mouth to determine how they are related to the whole body. It focuses on how oral infections, toxins and disease as well as dental treatments and materials can affect your overall health. Holistic dentisty is not a new trend, despite becoming more prominent in recent years.
The Oral-Systemic Connection
In the holistic dental community, the term oral-systemic connection is used frequently. It means that the mouth and body are connected. This field of study aims to bridge the gap between dental care and medicine.
There are many different examples of this connection which demonstrate that the body, mind and mouth should all be considered when treating patients and diagnosing illnesses. What affects one aspect of your body could have unexpected effects on both your mental and oral health.
A good example of this is our bodies’ circulatory system. When you brush or floss your teeth and see a small amount of blood in your gums, this can be a sign of gum disease, but the bleeding also creates a way for bacteria to enter your body. Within a matter of minutes, bacteria from your mouth can make its way throughout your entire circulatory system.
Previously no concerns or thoughts were given to this. However, approximately 20 years ago cardiologists began to see a link between patients who had cardiovascular disease and periodontal disease. This led to further studies which now has established that people with gum disease have 2-3 times the risk of having a heart attack, stroke or another cardiovascular incident. This is why you often see articles published that demonstrate how gum disease can cause other serious illnesses throughout the body, such as heart disease.
Another very simple example of this is eating sugary foods. All dentists will tell patients to avoid sugary candy and sodas because it will cause cavities to form in their mouths. Eating sugary foods will not only cause cavities, but it can also affect the rest of your body and cause a plethora of seemingly unrelated problems such as obesity, high blood sugar and diabetes, it is also associated with depression and mental health. Therefore, you should avoid sweets not only because it will affect your teeth, but because it will also affect your entire body. This holistic dentistry approach takes everything into account, rather than simply how certain things affect your mouth on its own.
Who Should Visit a Holistic Dentist?
Anyone can visit a holistic dentist. Holistic dentists are trained in the field of dentistry and understand the practice intimately. They can do all of the same things a clinical dentist would do, but they take a more mindful approach. They understand that the products and treatments they use can have adverse effects throughout the body.
Some patients may have sensitivities to certain materials that are used in dentistry. These may not be true allergies per se, but they still, cause a reaction by the body. A holistic dentist will be able to provide testing or direct you to a clinic where sensitivity testing can be done to ensure there is no reaction to the dental materials being used.
Those who have metal sensitivities or allergies should definitely see a holistic dentist. At VCCID we are mercury-free and do not use mercury-based crowns or fillings in our practice. We also have alternatives to titanium dental implants for patients who are sensitive to certain metals. We value our patients’ health and choose not to put them at risk by using harmful chemicals and products in our practice.
Anyone who is concerned about their personal health, and what goes into their bodies should see a holistic dental professional. There are so many different benefits to holistic dentistry, including individualized care, non-toxic materials and a focus on personal health and prevention.
A Holistic Approach
We tailor our approach to each patients’ individual needs, based on their medical as well as their dental history. We focus on your oral health to ensure you get the right dental treatment but we are also vigilant and ensure that your treatment plan does not have adverse effects on your entire body. That is why we are mercury-free and only use products that are safe for your body and your mouth.
In recent years, patients have started looking for practices that offer this unique approach and we are proud to be able to offer these services. Our team aims to reduce the toxins within your body by using safe practices and treatments. If you have any sensitivities or you are concerned about what is going in your mouth, that is where holistic dental care comes into play.
Visit VCCID for Holistic Dental Care
At VCCID we care for more than just your teeth. Our knowledgeable team is dedicated to your health and well being. Holistic dentistry means choosing what is right for your body. We are vigilant about the products and equipment we use and we seek to promote healthy living in our practice, as well as healthy smiles. Visit our clinic in Burnaby, Metrotown for a consultation or call at (604) 434-0248.