Essential Oils in the Dental World

Plant extracts have been used in the world of health since the beginning of time. Today we have a vast amount of essential oils that can do anything from cure illness and calm nerves to improving your overall wellness. Many of these oils are used in spas around the world to create an ambiance that can strongly, and positively, influence the brain and nervous system.

But what many people don’t know is that it’s not just spas that are using essential oils, you will find them right here, in our office. When applied prior to and during a dental procedure a patient’s anxiety can be reduced dramatically. And diffusing certain oils can create a soothing aroma.

Essential oils are also an all-natural way to keep your gums and teeth in tip-top shape. You don’t need all the chemicals that come in over the counter toothpastes and mouthwashes. Just like all-natural deodorants are perfectly capable of keeping you dry and odor free, essential oils can keep your mouth healthy and your teeth clean and white.

In our office we see the benefits from using several essential oils, such as lavender, thieves, grapefruit, rosemary, rose, oregano, peppermint, palo santo, and orange, just to name a few. Many of these oils are considered “peace and calming” oils. A patient that may have dental anxiety or panic attacks can rub a small amount the their wrists and inhale the aroma. This soothes and calms the nerves.

Here are a couple of studies that show the benefits of essential oils in the dental world.

1- At the University Clinic of Neurology, Medical University of Vienna, Austria, a study was done using lavender and orange oils. Two hundred patients were assessed in a controlled condition while waiting for dental treatment. They were between the ages of 18 and 77 years, half of which were men and half women. The goal of having the ambient of the aromas of orange and lavender was to see the impact it had on their mood, calmness, anxiety, and alertness.

The statistical analyses revealed findings that both orange and lavender helped reduce stress and anxiety in dental patients.

2- A study done in Japan showed that patients who were undergoing minimally- invasive cosmetic dental procedures showed that the aroma of lavender and rosemary decreased their levels of cortisol. Cortisol is an important hormone in the body, secreted by the adrenal glands that help regulate blood pressure, release insulin for blood sugar maintenance, and support immune functions.

3- A Kings College in London had a similar study with the effects of lavender. One group of patients were given lavender oil to smell while waiting for dental treatments and another was given a placebo oil. The one with the lavender reported feeling less anxious and stressed, the one without reported that they still felt the same anxiety that they came in with.

Essential oils should not be confused with nice smelling candles, spices, potpourri, or air fresheners. There is a scientific use for essential oils that enhance your physical and psychological well-being. We use these oils for their calming effects to enhance the patient experience. We care about more than just our patients oral health, we care about each and everyone’s overall health and well-being. Essential oils are just a part of how we care for our patients, but an “essential” one indeed.

What Is Ozone Therapy and Why Do You Need It?

Ozone Therapy Solana Beach CAOzone therapy is a safe and effective treatment used for periodontal disease, tooth whitening, and several other dental procedures. These treatments are well-tested and have shown themselves to be a very effective way to treat and prevent oral infections. But how, exactly, does it work?

First, A Little History

A lot of people have never heard of ozone therapy, and immediately classify it as some “new wave” kind of thing. But the truth of the matter is that people have been using and studying the effective of ozone in medical situations for more than 150 years.

Ozone’s uses have been documented over the decades. It was first employed as a way to disinfect and sterilize surgical tools and rooms, but it has since been used to treat infections, diseases, and wounds. In general, though, using ozone in medical situations is based on a few simple principles.

So How Does It Work?

In order to really get into the mechanisms of how ozone therapy works, it usually requires a lot of scientific words and statistics that we really won’t get into here. (But you can check out a full description here.) However, the basics are pretty straightforward.

The bacteria and microorganisms on your teeth try to hide away where they can do the most damage, but using ozone correctly will directly attack these microbes in very specific ways.

First, it disrupts the integrity of the bacterial cells. Ozone also damages viruses and makes it so they can’t reproduce normally. Then, the weak enzyme coatings on cells that would usually make them vulnerable to viruses can be oxidized, which means that those weak elements can be eliminated from the body and replaced with healthy cells.

Ozone therapy will also stimulate oxygen metabolism. This means that the patient will experience an increase in red blood cell glycolysis rate, which basically means that there will also be an increase of the amount of oxygen released into the tissues of the body. This will also stimulate the production of enzymes which hunt down the free radicals in your body and then act as cell wall protectors. In a way, this means that we’re not just treating your mouth. We’re treating your overall health and wellness.

This process can also impact your natural immune system. When ozone is administered in the right concentration, it increases the production of, well, a number of element in the body with very long names that improve your immune responses (check out the above link for more of the long names).

Ozone Dental Treatments

There are three common ways that ozone can be applied as a dental treatment. The first is ozonated water, the second is ozonated olive oil, and, of course, it can also be applied as oxygen/ozone gas.

Water and olive oil both have the ability to grab onto the ozone and then release it when it is applied to the teeth. The gas requires a little more control.

There are, of course, several clinical applications of ozone/oxygen that we do in the office. These treatments include:

  • Preventing cavities
  • Managing tooth sensitivity
  • Treating gum disease
  • Removing biofilm
  • Controlling bad breath
  • Whitening teeth
  • Infection control
  • And more

Ozone therapy is designed to be a painless way to get the dental care you need while improving your own ability to heal up after the treatment. We’ll work with you to determine if this is the best option for your overall oral health.

A Closer Look at Alternative Toothpaste

When searching for the perfect pearly-white and healthy teeth cleaning toothpaste, most people stick with the go-to, over-the-counter, everyday brands that we all know and assume are best for us. But are they really? Many of the beloved store-bought tubes of toothpaste contain sodium fluoride and ingesting even small amounts can cause nausea, headaches, and even vomiting.

So what is a healthy, holistic alternative to help you avoid the harmful chemicals in certain products?

Coconuts. Don’t be fooled, this delicious fruit is not just for making the tasty shreddings on the top of a birthday cake or that fancy island drink, coconut oil has biocidal properties that fight against bacteria and tooth decay. Saliva breaks down fatty coconut oil with enzymes and turns it into a specific acid that is toxic to bacteria including Streptococcus mutans, which are common inhabitants of your mouth.

Here are five very effective reasons to switch from traditional toothpaste to coconut oil:

1 – 100% natural = no harmful chemicals.

Conventional toothpaste often contains an antibacterial chemical called triclosan, which has been linked to a handful of harmful diseases, including ovarian, breast, prostate, and testicular cancer. Fluoride is another poisonous chemical found in many over-the-counter products and can be harmful to your body even in trace amounts.

2 – Coconut oil does not contain foaming agents.

Sodium lauryl sulfate, sodium lauryl ether sulfate, or sodium laureth are the chemicals responsible for creating the foaming action in many toothpastes. These are the cause of the break up the phospholipids on your tongue and can be damaging to your tastebuds.

3 – This teeth cleaning alternative is inexpensive.

A jar of coconut oil will set your wallet back around $8.00 and can easily last you a month. You only need a very small amount to keep your teeth clean.

4 – Keeps your furry friends’ mouths happy and healthy too.

Using conventional or “human” toothpaste on your sweet Golden Retriever will be a challenge, and the unsafe chemicals that are found in them will have negative effects on your pets too. Just by letting your pets lick even a small amount can be very beneficial to their dental health.

5 – You can use it as an oil pulling mouthwash as well.

‘Rinsing’ your mouth with coconut oil can draw out cavity-causing bacteria. Much like mouthwash, although without the gargling, the oil is worked within the mouth by pushing and pulling through the teeth. Ten to fifteen minutes is recommended, but even five minutes of this teeth-cleaning routine can draw out the destructive bacteria in your mouth.

Switch from the usual, ever-so-popular, and possibly damaging toothpastes out there to coconut oil and improve your oral health. Fight malicious bacteria with the coconut oil alternative and keep your mouth happy and healthy.

The Tooth/Body Connection

tooth organ

Thousands of years ago, the Chinese discovered that the human body was flowing with an energy they called Qi (pronounced “chi”). They also found ways to measure Qi and mapped out the network of pathways on which it flowed. These pathways are called meridians.

The flow of Qi is essential to good health. In a healthy body, it flows smoothly. If that flow is disturbed, disease may result. You can think of it like breathing, where air flows in and out smoothly when you’re healthy, but if that flow is disturbed, disease or death may follow.

The meridians connect particular organs together to create balance. Every yin organ is paired with a yang organ – liver with gall bladder, lungs with large intestine, kidney with bladder, stomach with spleen, heart with small intestine, and so on. The meridians likewise connect each tooth to specific organs.

The easiest way to see the meridians connecting the organs and teeth is to consider one tooth at a time. Looking at a meridian tooth chart, you can find the appropriate tooth and follow the blocks vertically, or you may locate an organ that will lead you to the corresponding tooth. As you look at the chart, you will notice that the maxillary molars and mandibular bicuspids cross the same meridians.

Every tooth has a meridian going to it. There are 12 meridians in total, and each of the 32 teeth are represented on them. The bicuspids share one meridian; the molars share another; the anterior (front) teeth, yet another. The maxillary bicuspids share with the mandibular molars, and the maxillary molars share with the mandibular bicuspids.

Remember: The meridians can be affected anywhere. A maxillary six year molar with a root canal could be the cause of a stomach problem, or the stomach problem could be affecting the six year molar. It is important to get an analysis from a qualified practitioner to confirm where the block is occurring.

Think of a meridian as a giant freeway making a circle around a city. There are several exit and entrance ramps. These ramps allow energy to flow from the meridian to the organ and from the organ back to the meridian.

I look at the meridian chart during my new patient exams to assist me in my diagnosis and treatment planning for patients coming into my office. It is often amazing to see the connection!

Why Nutrition is Paramount to Your Dental and Overall Health

Take Control of Your Health and Embrace Real Food

If you are at all concerned about your health,  whether  you want to improve it or maintain it,  then nutrition is paramount.  In fact, diet accounts for about 80% of the health benefits reaped by adopting a healthy lifestyle with the other 20% from exercise.

A healthy diet is based on fresh, unprocessed, organic, whole foods. These are the signs of high quality,  health promoting foods that you will want to look for when grocery shopping. If the food meets these criteria, it is most likely a wise choice.

  1. It is grown without pesticides and chemical fertilizers
  2. It is not genetically engineered
  3. It contains no added growth hormones, antibiotics, drugs
  4. It does not contain any artificial ingredients including chemical preservatives
  5. It is fresh
  6. It did not come from a concentrated animal feeding operation (CAFO)
  7. It is grown with the laws of nature in mind (animals are fed their native diets, not a mix of grains and animal byproducts, and have free range access to the outdoors)
  8. It is grown in a sustainable way ( using minimal amounts of water, protecting the soil from burnout, and turning animal wastes into natural fertilizers instead of environmental pollutants)

Why are minerals and nutrients important for oral health?

You must include minerals and nutrients in your1907762_10206339623428787_286341975378922000_n diet in order for the body’s
tissues to resist infection. The presence of too much or too little of any nutrient can have harmful effects, particularly on the mouth and teeth, and may contribute to oral diseases and infection.

There are many minerals and nutrients that are good for the entire body. Here are just some of the minerals and nutrients your body needs to stay healthy:

  • Calcium. Your teeth and jaws are made mostly of calcium. Without enough calcium in your diet, you risk developing gum disease and tooth decay. Calcium is found in many foods and liquids, such as milk, yogurt, cheese, beans, and oysters, and broccoli.
  • Iron. Iron deficiency can cause your tongue to become inflamed, and sores can form inside your mouth. Iron is found in many foods, including liver seafood,poultry and red meat. Other iron-rich foods include green leafy vegetables, nuts and spices.
  • Vitamin B3 (niacin). A lack of vitamin B3 can cause bad breath and canker sores in the mouth. To boost your B3 levels, eat chicken and tuna, turkey and crimini mushrooms.
  • Vitamins B12 and B2 (riboflavin). You also can develop mouth sores when you do not consume enough of the vitamins B12 and B2. Red meat, chicken, liver, pork, fish, as well as dairy products like milk, yogurt, and cheese, are good sources of vitamin B12. Vitamin B2 is found in foods like soybeans, spinach, beet greens, almonds, yogurt, eggs, and asparagus.
  • Vitamin C. Too little vitamin C will lead to bleeding gums and loose teeth. Sweet potatoes, raw red peppers, leafy greens, brussel sprouts, papayas and oranges are great sources of vitamin C.
  • Vitamin D. It is very important to consume enough vitamin D because it helps your body absorb calcium. A diet lacking or low in vitamin D will cause burning mouth syndrome. Symptoms of this condition include a burning mouth sensation, a metallic or bitter taste in the mouth, and dry mouth. Drink organic milk, and eat egg yolks and fatty  fish or salmon to increase your vitamin D intake.

Not all foods are good for your teeth. If you consume these foods, do so in moderation, and be sure to practice good oral health care.

  • Bacteria feed on leftover foods in the mouth and produce acid, which causes decay. Carbohydrate-laden foods, such as chips, bread, pasta, or crackers, can be as harmful to the teeth as candy.
  • Sticky, chewy foods. Raisins, granola bars, jelly beans, caramel, honey, and syrup stick to teeth and make it difficult for saliva to wash the sugar away.
  • Sugary snacks. Snacks like cookies, cakes, or other desserts contain a high amount of sugar, which can cause tooth decay.
  • Gum and candy. Chewing gum and eating candy is very harmful to your teeth. As you eat, sugar coats your teeth, which can lead to cavities.
  • Carbonated soft drinks. Regular soda contains an extremely high amount of sugar. Both regular and diet sodas also contain phosphorous and carbonation, which wears away the enamel on your teeth (causing them to become stained and brown).
  • Fruit or vegetable juices. Fruit and vegetable juices tend to be high in sugar, which can damage tooth enamel and lead to decay.

Why I Love Argentyn 23

I was introduced to this product at the Holistic Dental Association a while back and was astounded by the results I heard from people who had used it. This professional bio-active silver hydrosol may be one of the most effective tools to maintaining and supporting your immune system.

Family_CircularI always carry the spray bottle with me when I fly to prevent me from getting sick from the recycled air and high amount of germs floating around in the cabin.  Due to this nano-silver’s antibacterial properties, I find a lot of uses for it with my patients . It is also  has bactericidal, anti-fungal and anti-cancer activity.

Silver has been used in safeguarding human health for hundreds of years. It has various uses like improving mouth and gum health to throat, GI, ear, eye and respiratory health.  They even have intestinal health protocols to help with candida, irritable bowel syndrom, leaky gut and Crohn’s disease.

My family uses it daily for boosting immunity  for the short and long term.  Compared to other products, Argentyn 23 is fundamentally 96% active silver, and it is stable for over 3 years in the bottle, and is a great addition to your daily  vitamin regimen.

Other manufacturers of colloidal silver can have contaminants by the presence of salts, proteins, compounds and stabilizers , which can lessen the bio-activity of silver. I greatly support this product for its safety and quality of such a pure product that I can trust with my family and my patients.

Why Argenten 23?

Immune Health with Silver Hydrosol