With the rise of alternative medicine, many parents are curious about holistic healthcare and its effectiveness. There has also been a long history of holistic dental care that is focused on the well being of the body and mind, not just the teeth. As pediatric dentists in Katy, we definitely agree wholeheartedly that dental care extends to your lifestyle and overall health, but there are a few myths to debunk about holistic dental care. To help our Kids Healthy Teeth patients decipher fact from fiction, we’re answering your questions about holistic dental care beliefs today!
Is fluoride bad for you?
A common belief many holistic practitioners hold is that fluoride is bad for you, but the truth is much more complicated than that. Fluoride is actually a great, naturally-occurring element that provides endless benefits for your dental health. When consumed or applied topically, fluoride can remineralize the enamel and protect teeth from cavity-causing bacteria. It has such incredible dental health benefits that most populous cities now fluoridate their public drinking water.
On the flip side, too much fluoride consumption can lead to a condition called dental fluorosis. When children ingest excessive amounts of fluoride, their teeth may develop discolored spots from hypomineralization. You can prevent this from happening to your children by monitoring their brushing routine. They may be accidentally swallowing fluoridated toothpaste instead of spitting it out, leading to fluorosis.
Of course, this occurs rarely and in very extreme cases, so it’s not enough of a threat to disregard the incredible benefits of fluoride altogether. Talk to our pediatric dentist in Katy to find out when it’s a good time to introduce fluoride into your child’s dental care routine.
Are silver fillings toxic?
According to holistic dentists, silver fillings that may contain mercury are extremely harmful to the body. Silver fillings are usually made of a mixture of metals, including silver, tin, copper, and mercury. Since mercury exposure is known to have negative effects, many parents are concerned about its use in the creation of silver amalgam for fillings. According to the American Dental Association, however, mercury is a completely safe compound when it is stabilized and mixed with other metals.
If you are still concerned about your child’s silver fillings, you can always ask for white fillings! These composite resin fillings are typically made of ceramic, plastic, and sometimes, glass. They’re completely mercury-free and they work just like silver fillings. Since most fillings only last 7 – 10 years, our pediatric dentist in Katy can replace your silver ones with white fillings when the time comes.
Is sedation dangerous?
Many holistic dentists refuse to use anesthetics or sedation because they believe it is too dangerous for children. On the contrary, properly administered sedation from a pediatric dentist is extremely safe. Furthermore, the benefits of getting proper dental care far outweigh the risks of sedation dentistry. Children who suffer from dental anxiety or have special needs may need sedation and anesthetics for dental procedures. Sometimes, it’s safer for a child to be sedated than to have a child thrashing in the midst of sensitive dental equipment.
In an effort to preserve tooth structure and to avoid dental sedation and anesthetics, certain holistic dentists may avoid providing regular dental services, like root canals and tooth extractions, altogether. As noble as this may seem, those treatments may be necessary to avoid deadly infections and severe dental conditions later down the line.
We hope this answers questions you have about holistic dental care. If you are interested in learning about more natural ways to care for your child’s teeth, we highly recommend talking to the pediatric dentist first. Unlike general or holistic dentists, pediatric dentists are trained specifically to treat children’s dental issues, so they are the best source for pediatric dental care, holistic or otherwise. To discuss this further with a pediatric dentist in Katy, give us a call or book an appointment at Kids Healthy Teeth!