The mouth – including the tongue and teeth – is a very important area for diagnosing systemic as well as local disorders.
Aware dentists are often the first to diagnose diseases such as oral cancer, AIDS and anaemia. The oral symptoms of any kind of cancer include cracks in the corner of the mouth, changes in the colour of the tongue and lips (sometimes turning blood red) and chronic gum bleeding. Even at the pre-cancer stage gum bleeding can occur, so if treated appropriately this can be reversed.
Holistic dentistry applies prevention-oriented care and understands the impact of good nutrition and natural medicines on the dental and general healing process. Antibiotics are used as a last resort. Nutritional, homeopathic, and natural medicines prevent their being necessary most of the time. Natural mouth washes such as propolis, tea tree oil, and extract of grapefruit seed are recommended and in low-disease mouths fluoride-free pastes are suggested as fluoride has been shown to be rather toxic.
Mercury-based fillings and root fillings are avoided as far as possible. The mouth and body can be tested for heavy metal poisoning and cleansed by using special homeopathic remedies and mouth washes. Existing mercury-based fillings are removed under very isolative and protective conditions and the body is prepared accordingly with vitamins and natural medicines.
Holistic dentists are sensitive to the detrimental impact of negative emotions such as stress and fear. Excessive tooth wear, dysfunction of the joints of the jaw and many kinds of migraines and other headaches can be diagnosed and treated by understanding a patient’s lifestyle. Dentists may recommend hypnotherapy, cranial osteopathy, and many forms of massage, including aromatherapy.
Any dentist should naturally be able to put people at ease. If a patient still feels fearful of visiting the dentist, then a whole host of methods can be applied to calm them – hypnotherapy, the use of essential oils or flower remedies, or energy healing may all help.