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Natural Tooth Care

This article is not a replacement for professional dental care. Regular check-ups are vital.  And if you have periodontal disease the skill of your hygienist is key.

But if enhancing this with a natural tooth care protocol appeals, then do read on!

Looking after oral health is vital.  Gum disease can contribute to major issues such as heart disease.  And can have serious implications if your immune system has been compromised.  

 

What's In Most Tooth Care Products?

The array of oral care products these days is staggering.  For us, its natural all the way, ordinary products contain some very unpleasant ingredients.  Of course the argument is that these products arent swallowed.  But there will inevitably be some ingestion however small, and ingredients can be absorbed via the mucous membranes.

  • Sodium Lauryl Sulfate creates foam.  It is a skin irritant.  It is highly toxic in animal testing (which we do not support) and damages aquatic animals - manufacturing and widespread use means it is in our water systems.  Studies have shown it can penetrate to human internal systems and tissues.
  • Triclosan is used is many skin care products, but also as a pesticide! It has  potential for endocrine disruption (ie can interfere with the hormones).  Of course the EU and FDA say it is safe, yet some of the large toothpaste companies have removed, even though they argue the amounts are too small to worry about.
  • FD&C Blue Dye 1 & 2  are made from coal tar and petroleum . The Center for Science in the Public Interest and a study in the Lancet have linked these artificial dyes to behavioural problems.
  • Hydrated Silica is a whitener and abrasive made of sand and can actually erode your enamel over time!
  • Fluoride is promoted as preventing tooth decay.  It is even added to the water in some areas.  However, data complied by the World Health Organization (WHO) shows that tooth decay rates have declined just as rapidly in non-fluoridated western countries as they have in fluoridated western countries.  The argument for its use is flawed, and considering the number of questions and issues, to us, this is something that has no place in oral care products, or even our drinking water. 
  • Sweeteners - goes without saying, but this is just ludicrous isn't it!  And that's without discuing the serious health risks posed by artificial sweeteners such as aspartame. Suffice to say, sugar, in toothpaste... WHY?
  • Alcohol - drying, and potentially irritating.

 

Natural Toothpaste and Mouthwash

Pop into your local health food store and you will find some really excellent fluoride and chemical free toothpastes, typically including mint, aloe vera and Coq10. The Kingfisher and Aloe Dent brands are excellent.  

Or, if you're on a budget, and want as simple as can be, then bicarbonate of soda works a treat, you can also add a little Celtic Salt to that.  Both are extremely alkalising, but also effective. Bicarbonate could be all you need! Please check if labelled "baking soda" as this often has added unneccesary ingredients. If you have gum disease, they can give impressive results.  In fact, given a good diet, and existing good oral health,

You can also mix Celtic Salt is some warm water to make a really fantastic, totally natural and effective mouthwash. It is great for all round oral health, but also soothing if you have ulcers or similar.

Coconut Oil also makes a wonderful mouthwash, and is noted for antibacterial properties.  Additionally, you may like to experiment with oil pulling, and we would recommend Coconut Oil if this is something you want to try.  This is an unusual tecnhinique of taking a small amount of the oil, and swishing around the mouth for 10 - 20 minutes daily.

There is not much documented research and some outlandish health claims.  BUT try it for a few days, and you might be suprised as to how clean and fresh your mouth feels, our experiments were encouraging, so the many personal testimonials clearly have some value.  Due to the lack of documented research, it is innpappropriate for us to discuss futher, but do have a look on Google if this is a technique you want to know more about.

 

What About the Brush?

A toothbrush is just a brush isnt it? Well, no, there is an alternative. They might look a bit like an ordinary toothbrush, but the Dr Phillips Blotting Brushes are anything but ordinary. They were designed by a leading periodontist and are a revolution in oral health care. 

Dr J.E. Phillips was an international figure in contemporary oral health. With periodontics as a specialty, Dr Phillips findings took him across the world as an author, lector and periodontist.

Blotting is simple, yet innovative and proven effective. It's recommended if you have gum disease and as a preventative.  Many find it extremely effective at eliminating bad breath.

They can be used as a total replacement for normal brushing, or alongside your normal brush. Read more about this innovative technique here.

 

Flossing

This is a simple thing that all good dentists recommend with good reason.  Some people find the little te-pe brushes easier, and if you have gaps, they are also more effective.  But we would certainly recommend this too alongside normal brushing and / or blotting, and lifestyle changes.

 

Diet and Long Term Tooth Health

We are NOT grazers. Eating between meals is not only bad for your waistline, but also the health of your teeth.  And in general, the modern diet has a lot to answer for; there are still today societies who eat traditionally, and have little to no issues with their teeth and gums.

To support your teeth in the long term (it is also worth noting that remineralisation is possible), as it is for all aspects of health, it is vital you get sufficient quantities of all macro and micronutrients including your full range of vitamins, minerals and trace elements.  Calcium, magnesium and phosphorus are crucial, but dont rush straight out for those synthetic isolated options. Get these from foods and all round natural supplements that give you everything in a natural balanced form. So the broad spectrum range is fantastic, or a less expensive option, Kelp gives a good foundation.

And the fat soluble vitamins A and D in your diet are especially important to protect against tooth decay.  So including good quality saturated fats (you may like to refer to Low Fat is Fattening if you have any concerns about saturated fats) is a foundation. 

Focus on real, unprocessed whole foods, ideally organic, and adding some fermented foods if you can.  It is especially recommended to ferment grains to reduce the phytic acid.  In line with protocols shown effective by Weston A Price, we supply the incredible Fermented Cod Liver Oil and Butter Oil two nutrients proven associated with the healthiest teeth in the World.

 

Fruit and Teeth Health

Avoid sugars and sugary drinks. Fruit should be kept to a minimum, eating cheese at the same time protects the teeth.  Fruit juices for children have caused major issues with an increase in tooth decay in youngsters. If they are to have them occasionally as a treat, encourage the use of a straw. Refined carbohydrates are also problematic if you want excellent oral health. 

Dentists are seeing far too many tooth cavities in youngsters because parents are going overboard with fruit, and especially juices believing it to be healthy in any amount.   Smoothies are no better than coca cola when it comes to the sugar content.  Surveys have shown that in the summer, a third of children are drinking as much as eight glasses of juice a day. Milk and water are much better nutritionally, and for the teeth! 

Dental issues are the most common reason for children under 12 requiring a general anaesthetic, so this is a very important issue, and setting children up with good dental habits is something that will pay dividends their entire life.

It's best to wait for half an hour or longer after eating before brushing. But Cheese after a meal helps create a good pH balance, funny how instinct guides us to the cheeseboard isnt it!

 

What About Supplements for Gum Disease

CoQ10 is highly recommended with some strong research studies. And studies consistently show that probiotics may help reduce gum disease in some people.  Our Supergreen Probiotic is amazing because not only does it supply a full range of probiotics, it also helps your body to create its own friendly bacteria. Olive Leaf Extract will definitely help your body to control the bacteria.   Propolis can also be useful and also supplies a broad spectrum of vitamins and minerals. We make no medicinal claims, but do see Google!

 

References

  • Final Report on the Safety Assessment of Sodium Lauryl Sulfate and Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate
  • NewsTarget “Popular Shampoos Contain Toxic Chemicals Linked to Nerve Damage” Mike Adams, January 11, 2005
  • MSDS Data Sheet for Sodium Lauryl Sulfate
  •  International Journal of Toxicology December 1983 vol. 2 no. 7 127-181
  • Simultaneous determination of the endocrine disrupting compounds nonylphenol, nonylphenol ethoxylates, triclosan and bisphenol A in wastewater and sewage G Gatidou, NS Thomaidis, AS Stasinakis
  • Elimination of endocrine disrupting chemicals nonylphenol and bisphenol A and personal care product ingredient triclosan using enzyme preparation from the white …
  • H Cabana, JLH Jiwan, R Rozenberg, V Elisashvili…
  • Triclosan and antimicrobial resistance in bacteria: an overview.
  • Yazdankhah SP, Scheie AA, Høiby EA, Lunestad BT, Heir E, Fotland TØ, Naterstad K, Kruse H.
  • Probiotics in periodontal health and disease Anirban Chatterjee, Hirak Bhattacharya, and Abhishek Kandwal
  • Center for Science in the Public Interest http://www.cspinet.org
  • "The Lancet"; Food Additives and Hyperactive Behavior in 3-Year-Old and 8/9-Year-Old Children in the Community; D. McCann et al.; November 2007
  • http://www.fluoridealert.org
  • Nutrition and Physical Degeneration Weston A Price, DDS,
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