Chew on This: Embracing Biological Dentistry for Total Well-being – As people become more aware of how health and lifestyle are linked, dental health is changing. Enter biological dentistry. It’s a way of looking after your teeth and gums that also considers the health of your whole body, leading to a healthier, brighter smile.
Biological vs. Traditional Dentistry
Traditional dentistry usually focuses on treating problems with your teeth and gums. Some of the traditional techniques and practices in dentistry can contribute to health challenges. But biological dentistry, sometimes called the Functional Medicine of dentistry, looks at dental care more broadly. It recognizes the critical link between your mouth’s health and your whole body’s health. It focuses on preventing problems before they happen, eating healthy food, and using treatments that work well with your body.
We now have a growing understanding of how all parts of our body are connected. For example, our mouth is full of different tiny organisms. These can affect not only our mouth’s health but also our heart health, metabolism, and even our mental health. Biological dentistry tries to keep this balance of organisms in our mouth healthy to ensure our whole body stays healthy.
Here’s an example: when you have a toothache, it might be a sign of more severe problems in your body. Instead of just filling the cavity, a biological dentist will look deeper for possible underlying causes. These might include what you eat, systemic health issues, or imbalances in the oral microbiome.
Also, biological dentistry uses biocompatible materials that work well with your body, especially for dental fillings. Traditional materials, like amalgam, have been linked to various health concerns due to their mercury content. Biological dentistry chooses safer materials, like composite resins or ceramics. Biological dentistry uses the Safe Mercury Amalgam Removal Technique (SMART) to protect patients and dentists from being excessively exposed to mercury during removal.
Prevention is essential in biological dentistry. The idea is that a healthy mouth means a healthy body. Of course, brushing and flossing, and regular check-ups are important. But biological dentistry looks beyond oral hygiene habits. Nutrition is heavily spotlighted because the food you eat can affect your mouth and body’s health. Whole foods rich in antioxidants, fiber, and omega-3 fats can help keep your mouth healthy.
Another vital part of biological dentistry is managing stress. Too much stress can lead to problems like grinding or clenching your teeth, leading to more serious conditions like TMJ disorders, gum disease, and even tooth loss. A good stress management routine can support healthier oral habits.
Dentistry of the Future
Biological dentistry is a fresh way of looking at dental care. It is becoming more popular because it fits our desire for personalized, whole-body health strategies. It moves from just reacting to health problems and instead emphasizes prevention and overall wellness.
As more people like you start to consider their health more holistically, it makes sense that biological dentistry is becoming more popular. By looking after the health of our mouth and whole body, we can look forward to healthier, brighter smiles.
In conclusion, biological dentistry is not just about fixing your teeth and gums. It’s about understanding your body, giving you the tools to look after your health, and creating a balance between your oral and overall health. It’s about being able to smile, knowing that your healthy smile is a sign of your overall well-being.
A great resource to learn more about biological dentistry is the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology. You can also locate a biological dentist near you on their website http://IAOMT.ORG.
More articles from our VIP Executive Contributor, Julie Michelson.