Great Smokies Medical Center of Asheville

Dental Conditions Impact General Health

For years, dentists and their patients alike have observed that general health problems can resolve after a tooth is pulled. Understanding how this can happen helps health practitioners and patients to detect problematic dental situations.

The Chinese have known for over 2000 years that we have invisible subtle bioelectrical pathways called meridians through which energy flows in our bodies. This bioelectrical grid forms the basis for the practice of acupuncture. The presence of these invisible meridians have been substantiated by Western medical techniques of injecting an acupuncture point with radioactive isotopes which can later be found to have traveled the known path of the meridian. Western medicine has historically been more concerned with the physical changes of disease and is in the infancy of understanding the more subtle energetic aspects of health.

Every tooth in the body is connected through this bioelectrical grid to a seemingly unrelated distant part of the body. For example, the wisdom teeth (or their sockets) are energetically connected to the heart and the two upper front teeth are connected to the prostate in men and uterus in women. Interference of healthy energy flow along meridians can adversely affect health. The onset of health problems that have a contributing cause from dental problems can occur soon after the dental work is done, or even years later.

Dental problems can impact overall health by the following four mechanisms that interfere with our bodies’ energetic circuitry.

* Mercury Toxicity. Mercury was first placed in people’s mouths as a filling material for cavities in the mid nineteenth century, and now 110 million mercury amalgams per year are being placed into North American mouths. If you have dull gray colored fillings in your teeth, you have mercury amalgams. The use of so-called “silver” amalgam (which is really 50% mercury) as a dental filling material can result in exposure to mercury, a known metabolic poison. A study done by dentists Murray Vimy and Hans Lorscheider in Calgary, Alberta, Canada involved filling the teeth of pregnant sheep with mercury amalgam that was radioactively tagged to differentiate it from other mercury that the sheep had accumulated in their body prior to the study. The tagged mercury was found in the sheep’s brain, bone, lungs, intestinal lymph nodes, kidney, liver, fetus, and placenta within weeks of placement in the teeth. Some scientists, physicians, and dentists feel compelled to respond to growing scientific evidence of questionable safety of mercury amalgams. Mercury amalgam is considered hazardous before it is placed in a tooth, and is again considered hazardous if it is removed and must be disposed in compliance with OSHA standards. Many wonder what properties of the human mouth render this toxic substance harmless while stored in the mouth. Mercury has been proven to release from amalgam in the form of a vapor called methyl mercury, and can accumulate in body tissues. Sweden, Japan, and Germany have banned the use of mercury amalgam in dentistry.

* Chronic Infections. The medical term for a chronic infection in bone is osteomyelitis, a condition that can affect the energy flow of meridians and burden the immune system. The term for an infection that occurs in a jawbone is a Neuralgia Inducing Cavitational Osteonecrosis (NICO). A cavitation is an area of dead jawbone that occurs in the socket of an extracted tooth when the normal hard bony tissue takes on a black semi-liquid decomposed character. There are no bones in the body that have more opportunity to be manipulated and thus infected than our jawbones (maxilla and mandible) from dental extractions, abscesses, injections, root canals, crowns, and implants. Mouths are notoriously germ laden places. The scarring that results can sometimes result in what is called a focal disturbance-a scar through which the subtle energy of the body cannot pass normally, resulting, over time, in health problems related to that meridian. Each tooth has about three miles of dentin tubules, microscopic channels where the blood and lymph flow in the inner portion of a tooth called the pulp. When bacteria gain access to the dentin tubules, the tooth itself may become infected and can then become an interference to health.

* Galvanic Current. Anytime there are two different metals, such as gold and mercury, in the mouth, there is the potential for a current to develop that flows between the two metals. Galvanic current can interfere with the more subtle energy flow of our meridians and thereby contribute to illness.

* Allergy to Metal. A true allergy to metals in the mouth may create a chronic burden on the immune system that can undermine health over time. Nickel is the most sensitizing of metals that are found in dental materials.

Maintaining oral hygiene is essential to good dental health and general health. Nutritional protocols for dental hygiene and immune support can help address existing periodontal disease. Our doctors work closely with specially trained biologically oriented dentists.

Connections between dental health and general health make the assessment of dental health an important part of a holistic medical approach to health problems. At the Great Smokies Medical Center, we assess the impact of a patient’s dental conditions on their general health through physical exam including biofeedback enhanced physical examination, laboratory assessment, neural therapy, and the use of Meridian Stress Assessment (MSA).

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