I am really working at being natural and holistic in my diet and daily hygiene care. At my last dentist appointment several months ago, I was told that I have a small cavity. Since then, I have been trying to heal it on my own using natural methods.
I don’t really feel or notice any change. And I would like to avoid having it filled with harmful material and have been considering seeing a metal-free dentist or a holistic-focused one. Do you think they will be supportive of my goal to heal the cavity through nutrition and other natural approaches?
-Bernard in Oregon
As of now, there are not any nutrition practices or supplements that have proven to be effective in healing a cavity. A holistic dentist will encourage the use of non-toxic dental products and practices. However, you may be disappointed to find out that they likely won’t support the “natural” healing of a cavity. There is a lot of information online about different theories. Some people may have reported their personal success. But, none of these claims have been documented or supported by the medical or science community. There are studies out there around the possibility of regrowing teeth. But, that relies on the use of stem cells and is very early on in the research and development phase.
As you are aware, silver amalgam fillings contain mercury and other metals. A mercury-free dentist does have metal-free options using composite material. These white fillings blend in with the natural structure of your tooth and are bonded to them using sophisticated technology and bonding materials. When these composite fillings are done by an experienced dentist, they may be an option to fill the tooth in a way that avoids any materials you feel have the potential to be harmful. A dentist that prioritizes holistic practices will also be able to safely remove any old amalgam fillings in a safe environment.
It is not recommended to continue on the path to natural healing if it has been determined that the tooth has a cavity. Even though you may not feel any difference at this time, if it is left untreated, the cavity may end up to be a bigger problem than if it was taken care of early on. The decay could increase and over time, you may require more invasive treatment like a dental crown or a root canal.
If you refuse to treat the tooth, it would be wise to have a dentist at least monitor it. Then, it can be evaluated and measured so you can be sure you won’t get to a point where you are in pain or end up in a situation where you may lose the tooth.
Thank you for your question. Hopefully this information by Petaluma dentist Rick Lane, DDS is beneficial to you.