1. What is Holistic Dentistry?
Holistic dentistry promotes health and prevention, rather than just focusing on the treatment of disease. It is a more mindful way of approaching dentistry. As holistic dentists, we recognise that the whole body is connected. This means on a mind, body and spirit level. The mouth is intimately associated with the rest of the body through many pathways.
We are general dentists with a particular interest in “looking beyond the mouth” to help our patients embrace their dental and overall well-being. Basically, the body affects the mouth and the mouth affects the body.
We offer general dental services being mindful of the treatments that we offer and materials that we use in order to work in harmony with the whole body.
We also work with a team of other practitioners such as integrative doctors, naturopaths, chiropractors and acupuncturists, to name a few.
2. Why do I need a consultation?
Consultations and examinations are an essential part of treatment at Anokhi Dental. At this appointment your dentist is able to get to know you and provide appropriate advice and treatment.
Your dentist will carry out a thorough examination and collect information about you. This will involve taking photographs of your teeth and (usually) x-rays. These findings will be discussed with you and treatment options will be offered to you.
You will be provided with a printed quote for treatment which will include all health fund item numbers.
3. Why do I need regular check -ups?
At Anokhi Dental, we believe that seeing your dentist on a regular basis is vital to keeping teeth in optimal working order and for overall good health. The traditional rule of thumb has been every six months, however we believe this should be based on the individual.
Some people who have a high rate of dental disease may be advised to come every three months, whereas others who have healthy mouths and minimal dentistry may be advised to come once a year.
By having regular check-ups, we are able to check for any issues that may require simple intervention and treatment. Sometimes it may feel as though everything in the mouth is healthy as there is no pain, however, when pain presents this is often indicative of an advanced problem that may require more expensive and invasive treatment. Most people who have needed fillings didn’t realise the cavity was there until the dentist found them at a check-up.
Gum disease also doesn’t tend to hurt either, so by the time a tooth has come become loose and infected there’s not much that a dentist can do to save it. Similarly, most oral cancers generally present as painful when they are at an advanced stage.
So check-ups are a vital part of ensuring the health of your mouth and of course, yourself.
4. Are you linked to any health funds?
No. We are not allied with any specific health insurance funds.
We do however, have a HICAPS facility so that you may claim from your fund on the spot.
5. Why do I need x-rays?
At Anokhi Dental we are aware of concerns around x-ray exposure and use a reduced radiation digital x-ray system.
X-rays provide us with additional important information about the condition of your teeth and will reveal any hidden decay, problems with the roots of your teeth or issues with your jaw and your facial bones.
Of course we will always be mindful of the benefit when recommending x-rays and will always obtain your consent before taking them.
6. Do you offer fluoride treatment?
We do not offer fluoride treatment at Anokhi Dental. We also use fluoride-free composite resins and polishing pastes.
To date, we have been reviewing the scientific data around fluoride and are not yet convinced of its therapeutic benefits and safety levels. Tooth decay is not caused by fluoride deficiency. There are so many factors involved in the reasons for dental decay such as genetics, diet, stress, specific oral bacteria to name a few.
The World Health Organisation states that most western developed countries that have stopped water fluoridation have experienced the same decline in childhood decay as fluoridated countries.
7. Do you offer root canal treatment?
Root canal treatment is a procedure carried out to retain a dead or dying tooth. A tooth can die for various reasons including dental decay, trauma, cracks and gum disease. The procedure involves cleaning out the nerve chamber when a tooth is dead or dying. In this way, the dead tooth may be kept in the mouth and can function as it did before. The procedure involves several visits to clean the main the canals of the chamber and place antiseptic pastes. Once this has been done, the canals are sealed up with a flexible filling material and the tooth is restored with a crown. Root canal teeth are very brittle and therefore a crown over the tooth can prevent the tooth cracking.
At Anokhi Dental, we do offer root canal treatment whilst being aware of current views on root canal treatment from a more biological point of view.
Research carried out by Dr Weston A. Price, a dentist in the early 1900’s raised concerns about the bacteria that were trapped inside a root canal treated tooth. He found that it was impossible to completely sterilise a dead tooth. This fact remains true today.
Dr Price’s findings showed that these were predominantly anaerobic bacteria and that they had the ability to release toxins into the body. This could cause challenges in other parts of the body including the heart, joints and brain.
His findings also revealed that approximately one quarter of people who had root canal treatment had no obvious health challenges associated with them. There are many factors to consider when deciding if root canal treatment is right for you.
At Anokhi Dental, we assess every case individually and give our recommendations based on this.
8. How do you remove mercury amalgam fillings?
At Anokhi Dental, we follow specific protocols laid out by the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology (IAOMT). Please see amalgam removal.
9. Can I heal my teeth naturally using vitamins and supplements?
We are often asked by patients if they can heal their teeth naturally if there is decay in their tooth i.e. a cavity. Let us consider the mineral structure of a tooth first. The bulk of a tooth is made up of dentine, whilst the outer harder coating is enamel. Cavities begin from the outside of the tooth. First the enamel is demineralised by acids made from bacteria. Once there is a hole in the enamel, the bacteria and decay spreads through the dentine which is a much softer mineral. We have not seen any valid scientific studies that show dental decay (once established in the dentine of a tooth) can be reversed by consuming certain foods and/or supplements. Certainly, a nutrient rich diet will help to prevent dental decay. Despite the many claims on the internet and social media sites to “heal teeth naturally” one should always seek a professional opinion if in doubt.