3 Simple Keys to Oral-Systemic Health

Do you ever feel like each time you visit the dentist you walk out with a new problem to fix?

Do you ever feel like, despite your best efforts, your teeth are aging faster than you are?

We recognize these common frustrations and employ a simple structure with three basic keys to help people achieve a mouth that feels great and that they feel great about.

The basic structure is a pyramid with one specific goal at each tier.  Our patients progress up the pyramid at their own pace, each tier moving them closer to their long-term goals and a mouth that contributes to their health in every way.

The first tier is Gums and Bone and the key to health is No Infections.  Eliminating gum disease and root canal infections means more than fresh breath and the promise of keeping your teeth.  We now have level A scientific evidence proving that both are an important cause of heart attack and stroke.  Both are also highly associated with other conditions such as diabetes, cancer, Alzheimer’s, and pre-term labor.  Most troubling of all is that both conditions can exist painlessly for years, quietly pumping bacteria into the body and destroying the foundation of your mouth.

The next step is Tooth health and the key to achieve this is the Elimination of All Openings in Teeth.  The enamel is the armor of the tooth that prevents bacteria from penetrating into the deeper layers causing decay and root canal infections.  Cavities, cracks, wear, and leaking fillings all present pathways for harmful bacteria to breach the enamel and cause problems.  Repairing the openings at the earliest stage possible is the key.

The next tier is the Bite and the key finding in a healthy mouth is that the Teeth are Not Wearing Down.  Tooth wear is the key sign of a chewing system breaking down and can be accompanied by sensitivity, gum recession, facial pain, and fractured teeth among other things.  As the teeth wear and flatten it requires more force to chew our food increasing the amount of stress on the entire system.  Controlling these forces is the key.  For those suffering from tooth wear or associated TMJ / muscle pain, dysfunction or esthetic concerns, the key is to isolate the causes and reverse the progress of bite disease.

Its a simple, holistic approach to help our patients become as healthy and disease-free as they choose to become!

 

Why do we fall?

Young-Bruce-Wayne-batman-begins-11593020-320-231In the Dark Knight Batman trilogy there is a very poignant flashback scene where young Bruce Wayne falls into the well that will eventually become the bat cave.  There, in darkness and with a broken leg, he is attacked by a cloud of bats…a forced encounter with his greatest fear.  After retrieving him from the well his father poses the question: “Why do we fall, Bruce?” with the answer being: “So we can learn to pick ourselves up.”

Many people’s experiences and fears with dentistry resemble Bruce’s fear of bats.  A fear-inducing encounter in an environment of forced vulnerability impairs one’s ability to receive dental care in the future.  We know there are many out there that have taken that fall.  We want to be here to help them get back up by helping them to chart a new course in an environment of compassion and non-judgment.

With the image of the well or one of your own fear-inducing experiences in mind, consider the word “hole”.  Feelings of isolation, despair, and hopelessness may arise.  But, add one letter to the front of that word and you get “Whole” and the recognition that both trials and triumphs are integral parts of a complete and healthy life.

Its amazing what a difference one letter can make, one experience can make, and one person can make in the life of another.  No one can change the world for everyone, but everyone can change the world for someone.  Who is that someone going to be for you today?

Faith

 

Faith

noun

  1. complete trust or confidence in someone or something

 

Those of us who place Faith in something greater than ourselves know the power that this act can have in our lives.  In my experience and in observation of others, Faith in God or faith in a more general sense gives one the power to do three things:

  1. to forgive what was?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????
  2. to confront what is
  3. to love all that could be

Faith exercised in the present gives the power to heal the past and the freedom to create the future.  It gives us the capacity to accept our present time as the only time that we have to act, and the courage to confront the Truth. Placing your faith in our dental practice is really just placing faith in yourself.  Because, when you do you gain the power to:

  1. move beyond the experiences and frustrations of the past
  2. confront the truth about the present state of your health
  3. create an intensely positive and optimistic vision for your future

It’s true that this may be more difficult for some than for others.  Maybe the past experiences weigh too heavily, maybe the present state of health is insurmountable.  Why, then, dare to dream of a brighter future? 

Sometimes the greatest value in a vision is not achievement of every detail of its initial imagining.  Sometimes the best reason to have a vision is because it gives us the journey (a journey that you no longer have to walk alone),  And it is the journey that gives us one thing that we could all use: HOPE.

This Is How My Career Will End…..

man and doorBeing just a week shy of 36, I know I have many years ahead of me to practice.  But I can also say, confidently, how I would like my career to end.  Not with a great amount of fanfare but with a whisper.  I don’t even expect that there will be a major sale, merger or acquisition…just a quiet closing of the door.

It won’t all happen at once, of course.  But, in the later years, our already small and quiet practice will slowly become even quieter.  First to go will be the noise of the drill as we use it less frequently.  Then the sound of the sharpening of tooth cleaning instruments.  Finally, the sound of our suction will disappear.  The only sound that will remain is the conversation with our patients centered on the actions that they can take to keep themselves healthy.

You see, in our practice people will eventually bring themselves to a point where they have very little need for dental treatment or cleanings.  This is not because we have “fixed” them (though there may have been some repair along the way). We certainly can’t take disease away from someone.  Instead it will be because of their own actions, guided by our team as their trusted partners and coaches.

Then one day, there will be no one on the schedule.  That day our friends will stop in to say hello and talk about their health.  But no one will oss the threshold from our reception area into our treatment rooms. 

At the end of that day I will quietly close the door and lock it one last time.  I will go home, hug my wife and thank her for all of the love and support that allowed me to pursue health with my patients for so many years.  Then, with our kids all grown, we will enjoy a quiet dinner and turn the page on this chapter of our lives and begin to write the next…..

Impossible! Some may say (and they may be right).  But If we are ever to achieve the true potential of our relationship, should I (as your dentist) aim for anything less??