alternative prevention

Prevention is a term often heard in dentistry, and prevention of oral disease is particularly important.

Holistic practitioners seek to use dietary methods or supplementation as a preventative measure, rather than apply-or ask the patient to consume-substances such as fluoride. Time spent analysing the patient's diet before arriving at a treatment plan is time well spent. Advice on correct brushing technique as well as the recommendation of specific toothpastes play a major role-patients using homeopathic remedies need spearmint and peppermint-free pastes, but these also need to fulfil the proper cleaning criteria. The use of proprietary mouthwashes should be avoided because they can upset the balance of microflora in the mouth. Any patients prescribed a course of antibiotics, by a doctor or dentist, are advised to take probiotics throughout this period and for some time afterwards.

As an adjunct in the treatment of gum disease, the use of coenzyme Q10 is particularly helpful (Res Commun Chem Pathol Pharmacol, 1976; 14: 729-38).

Appropriate homeopathic and herbal remedies can also be used, and the use of diet and nutrition supplements is especially important before, during and after any procedure than involves changing restorations in the mouth.

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