Holistic dentistry, also known as biological or natural Dentistry, is a philosophy of care that takes a more whole-body approach to dental care. Instead of just focusing on your mouth, holistic dentistry looks at the entire person. This whole-body approach considers not just your dental health but your emotional, environmental, spiritual, and physical health, as well.
Instead of just treating the symptoms, holistic dentists look at the whole mouth, body, and lifestyle to determine the underlying cause of symptoms or oral disease. For example, does the patient grind his or her teeth at night? Does he or she suffer from dry mouth? These are important questions to ask when determining the best course of treatment for a patient's oral health.
Many traditional practices focus on only addressing the symptoms—the infection, the cavity, or the receding gumline. While these methods may temporarily address the problem, they don't treat the underlying issue causing the symptoms in the first place. Holistic practitioners try to determine the cause and treat it instead. That way, you get long-lasting results that don't just fix the problem at hand but also prevent it from coming back again!
Holistic dental care also focuses on using biocompatible materials and replacing unhealthy ones like mercury amalgam with safer alternatives. Traditional dental practices may contain toxic materials like mercury amalgam fillings, BPA in plastic tools, and chemicals used to kill bacteria. These materials can be harmful to our bodies' natural systems and are unnecessary in most situations. Holistic dental professionals use safe materials that work with the body's natural processes instead of against them. As per holistic dentistry, mercury is a toxic metal that is often used in amalgam fillings to treat cavities. For this reason, holistic dentists opt to refrain from using amalgam fillings and instead look for alternatives like composite resin, glass ionomer, porcelain, and gold. Additionally, your dentist should also remove existing amalgam fillings and replace them with safer options.
In addition, the materials used in holistic dentistry are often biodegradable. Many patients are concerned with reducing their carbon footprint and using more environmentally-friendly options whenever possible, which is another reason that people are choosing holistic dentistry. Patients are also realizing that there's minimal difference in cost for alternative materials and that it's a better long-term option since many traditional materials can break down and require replacement over time anyway.
There has been debate in the public’s consciousness over root canal treatment. The origin of the controversy about root canal treatment lies in the question of whether endodontic treatment is able to disinfect the remnant populations of microbes present in the dentinal tubules. A holistic dentist will try to determine if there's a better alternative to performing a root canal on a damaged tooth before pursuing this procedure. Root canals remove the infected nerve of a tooth and replace it with an artificial one to prevent further damage to the tooth. However, many holistic dentists now look to alternative treatments that include laser therapy, extractions, herbs, etc. In some cases, these dentists may be able to perform a nerve treatment to regrow the tissue surrounding the tooth. In other cases, they may recommend extracting the tooth.
Minimally-invasive dental treatments are important for patients because they cause less trauma to the body and require a shorter recovery time. With biological, holistic, or natural dentistry, the focus is placed on avoiding painful, unnecessary procedures and focusing on the cause of the disease instead of solely treating its effects. As a result, the body is able to heal naturally without the need for antibiotics or steroids. For holistic dentists, the mouth is the gateway to the rest of the body, which is why they approach dentistry with a holistic mindset.
To learn more, please contact the dentist in Seattle, WA, at (206) 728-1330 or visit us at 2107 Elliott Ave Ste 210, Seattle, WA 98121. We will be happy to guide you further.