Biological Approaches for Complete Oral Health
by Sheila Julson
A biologic dentist (also called a holistic dentist) practices with a holistic approach - with the understanding that what happens to the teeth and gums can impact the entire body. Through minimally invasive techniques, preventive measures and use of dental materials that are non-toxic and compatible with the body, biologic dentists think outside the box when treating patients. Four Dallas-area dentists shared their expertise about different aspects within the biological dentistry realm.
Dr. Jeff Davies, of Dallas Designer Smiles, specializes in biomimetic dentistry, an approach that saves the natural tooth structure at all costs. It literally translates as “to mimic nature”, “This approach is unique in that only decayed, damaged or dysfunctional tooth structure is removed. When you honor and respect the natural tooth, you want to be conservative on what gets treated,” he explains. “The natural tooth becomes the model when restoring teeth. This style of dentistry will truly benefit patients by limiting over- treatments and aggressive work. Biomimetic dentistry drastically reduces the need for crowns and root canals. It stops the tooth cycle of death. Biomimetic dentistry can reduce the need for root canals by 90 percent.”
Using advanced technologies, Davies cleans away decay and uses specialized materials to restore the lost function of damaged teeth. Treatments like onlays are used, similar to a puzzle piece, to restore defective areas of teeth. “A traditional crown can remove nearly 70 percent of healthy tooth structure in order to make room for the manmade crown,” he states. This differs from traditional dental work of metal fillings and crowns. Those older treatment modalities can expand and crack a tooth, ultimately leading to crowns, root canals or bridges common in conventional dentistry.
“In my opinion, this is the best way to truly be holistic, to preserve what was God given. I'm trying to keep that tooth alive for as long as possible. I want my patients to have all their teeth their entire lives,” Davies advised.
Davies has started a Facebook group, Biological Dentistry Fans, to teach and connect people with holistic approaches toward health care and dentistry: Facebook.com/groups/biologicaldentistryfans
Dallas Designer Smiles
8222 Douglas Ave., Ste. 810, Dallas
Many holistic professionals believe in the axiom, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” and Dr. Darin Ward, of Face ForWard Orthodontics, is one of the few orthodontists in North America to bring that approach to his practice. “I want to help people help themselves by choosing the 'hard right, rather than the easy wrong,' through prevention, rather than waiting to fix things with invasive tooth extractions, bone screws or jaw surgery,” he affirms.
Ward was inspired to take a preventive approach toward orthodontics while practicing general dentistry in Eugene, Oregon. After he helped a toddler whose lower jaw had a shift of more than five millimeters and hadn't begun speaking, he became very interested in facial growth and development. “In growing children, it’s not about the teeth, it’s about the growth and development of the jaws. This is greatly affected by your rest oral posture—how you hold your jaw and move your muscles—and whether you breathe through your mouth or your nose,” he explains. “Grandma used to say, ‘Sit up straight and shut your mouth,’ and Grandma was right.”
Through the Good Oral Posture Exercise (GOPex) program, Ward helps children and their parents develop correct resting oral posture. It involves mindful habits like sitting up straight at the table, chewing with lips together, proper speaking and breathing properly through the nose; all habits that help achieve balanced growth of the face and teeth. This simple, yet challenging protocol also involves eating hard, natural foods like fruits and nuts to exercise the jaw; sitting up straight at the table; and limiting time on mobile devices that keep the head down and shoulders slouched. Instead of traditional dental chairs, his office has flat benches in which patients can sit on and look in a mirror to see the facial exercises offered by the Face ForWard Orthodontics Team.
For adolescents and adults whose mouths are already developed, Ward will offer options including braces, invisible aligner therapy, and surgical and non-surgical options.
Face ForWard Orthodontics
6131 Luther Lane, Ste. 208, Dallas
Dr. D. Brock Lynn, of Lynn Dental Care, practices general dentistry and specializes in periodontics, the branch of dental care that studies the supporting structures of teeth and the diseases that affect them, thus impacting oral health and ultimately, whole body wellness.
“Gum disease affects our bodies by way of inflammation. The bacteria present in dental plaque creates an inflammatory response,” he explains. “It’s the bacterial invasion in our gums that triggers our immune system to have an inflammatory reaction, and that reaction can affect the vascular tree, including the heart, and have negative effects on our cardiovascular health.”
In addition to cardiovascular issues, bacteria from gum disease have also been linked to Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes and pregnancy complications, including preeclampsia. Lynn says signs of gum disease include bleeding and receding gums, loose teeth and bad breath.
Lynn’s biological approaches toward treating gum disease include ozone therapy. Ozone is also added to the clinic’s water lines to get rid of biofilm in their dental units. Patients are also pretreated with ozone water before routine cleanings, surgical appointments or any procedures that use water spray. They also use it on deep fillings to help prevent root canals or to offer a more biological approach when a root canal does have to be performed on a patient.
Lynn also uses the non-invasive Laser-Assisted New Attachment Procedure (LANAP) that treats gum disease. He says the LANAP has been proven effective in eliminating bacteria, diseased soft tissues and promoting regrowth of healthy gums. In addition, LANAP helps stimulate bone regeneration after bone loss from periodontal disease.
Lynn Dental Care
6190 LBJ Freeway, Ste. 900, Dallas
Biological dentists such as Dr. Robyn Abramczyk, of Smile Ranch Family Dentistry, consider the biocompatibility of restorative dental materials. Using biocompatible materials in all dental procedures reduces the patient’s risk of having toxic, leachable or diffusible substances in the mouth that can be absorbed into the circulatory system.
Abramczyk cites recent research in Toxicology International, a publication of peer-reviewed research articles, stating that some components in standard composite fillings include formaldehyde, copper, aluminum and iron, all of which can be released into an oral environment due to degradation of the materials or from the friction of a toothbrush, temperature changes, pH changes while chewing food or grinding teeth.
In addition, Abramczyk emphasizes that people also have to consider metals used in implants, crowns and bridges, partials, orthodontics appliances that contain brackets and wires, and cementing agents used in applying crowns and bridges. Some also contain nickel, cadmium, aluminum, bisphenol A, commonly known as BPA, a known hormone or endocrine disrupter; and other chemicals such as bisphenol A-glycidyl (bis-GMA), 2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate (HEMA) and fluoride.
In addition to metals provoking immune reactivity, they can also be electrically active, Abramczyk notes. Oral galvanism is a condition created by the presence of dissimilar metals in the teeth and gums. Saliva can serve as an electrolyte, and thus cause a “shock” when a metal filling makes contact with items like tin foil or a spoon. She describes the effect as similar to having a battery in the mouth.
Abramczyk uses biocompatible materials such as zirconia crowns, organic white composite fillings that are fluoride free, BPA free, HEMA and bis-GMA free. Her office also offers testing to determine the most biocompatible material specifically to the patient. “If you have an immune system not functioning property, are hypersensitive, of if you’re just wondering what materials would be safe for you or your child, I recommend you consider biocompatibility testing,” she says. Smile Ranch Family Dentistry offers the Clifford and Biocomps testing methods to determine which materials are best for each patient.
Smile Ranch Family Dentistry
6700 Horizon Rd., Heath
Holistic Dental Resources
Dr. Robyn AbramczykSmile Ranch
Dr. Robyn Abramczyk
6700 Horizon Rd., Heath
972-772-7645 • SmileRanchDentistry.com
Treating the individual goes far beyond cleaning teeth. By looking at the whole being, nutritional patterns and lifestyle choices, optimal health and oral hygiene can be attained. We go the extra mile to restore teeth with safe, non-toxic and mercury-free biocompatible materials.
Dr. Patricia Berube
Periodontics and Implants, Exclusively
3313 Unicorn Lake Blvd. Suite 151
Denton, Texas 76210
P:(940) 384-PERIO (7374)
Medical, and therefore dental, conditions are becoming increasingly more complicated. Practitioners that learn about “holistics” are adding more tools to their tool belt to help mitigate the myriad of health issues we now see.
Dr. Becky Coats DDS, MAGD, LVIF, FIDIA, FAAC
2631 Ira E Woods, Grapevine, TX 76051
We focus on the connection between oral and total body health. We employ unique techniques, such as, BPA and Metal Free Fillings – eliminate toxic chemicals resting in your mouth; and TMJ Treatment – fix your alignment and the rest will follow
Dr. Jeffrey Davies
Dallas Designer Smiles
8222 Douglas Ave., Ste. 810, Dallas
214-363-7777 • 2Grin.com
Biomimetic dentistry seeks to mimic nature and preserve as much of your teeth as possible and to eliminate or reduce the risk of toxic exposure. We feel that we are not just changing smiles, we are changing and improving people’s lives as a whole.
Dr. Toni Engram
Opening at City line January 2020
Richardson at Renner Rd and Central Expressway
972-723-1148 • LegacyDentistry.com
Dr. Engram believes in supporting you on your journey to health by educating and holistically serving your needs with integrity and respect. Holistic dentistry treats the cause of dental problems, not just the symptoms.
Philip Kozlow D.D.S. and Joshua Rowell D.D.S.
Kozlow & Rowell Dentistry
5050 Quorum Dr. Ste 300
Dallas, TX 75254
Living in today's environment of "toxic soup," we all have a limit to how much exposure our bodies can tolerate. The holistic dentists in our office believe limiting toxins in the dental environment is essential to overall health.
Sushma Lavu D.D.S
Michael R Jackson D.D.S.
6924 South Freeway (I-35W)
Fort Worth, TX 76134
We pride ourselves on being friends with our patients and earning their trust in our abilities to contribute to a healthy oral environment and support their quest to improve or maintain a vigorous, active, healthy lifestyle.
D Brock Lynn DDS MS
Lynn Dental Care: Complete Health Dentistry D Brock Lynn DDS MS
6190 LBJ Freeway suite 900
Dallas, TX 75240
Holistic dentists focus on the root causes of inflammation in their patients, most commonly found in the mouth as Periodontal (gum) disease. Consequences are widespread and often devastating, manifesting as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s and some forms of cancer.
Dr. Minaxi Mirkal
Prime Integrative Dentistry
Dr. Minaxi Mirkal
972-885-9191 • 617-838-8342
Everything must coexist for harmony to ensue. It is this encompassing nature of all things living that constitutes life. This mentality is the basis of our holistic dentistry, care and practice.
Dr. Preetha Thomas
500 West Southlake Boulevard, Suite #130
Southlake, TX 76092
Dr. Thomas seeks to always treat the underlying problem causing the symptoms and eliminate the real cause, rather than covering up the symptoms. Our goal for every patient is to achieve whole body health in a spa-like, mercury free environment.
Dr. Darin Ward
Face Forward Orthodontics
6131 Luther Lane, Suite 208
Dallas, TX 75225
At Face ForWard Orthodontics it is our mission to lead others to be the best version of themselves with Integrity, respect and positive enthusiasm by being the best version of ourselves!
Dr. Michele Williams
4851 Legacy Dr. Suite 201
Frisco, TX 75034
1560 Hwy 287 Suite 100
Mansfield, TX 76063
Williams Dental Wellness provides advanced diagnostics and individualized, multidisciplinary integrative therapy. Trusted partner relationships are the foundation of our practice. We believe understanding the root causes of the presenting ailment should be the core of any treatment plan.