Modern dentistry offers amazing tools for treating dental disease. But Dr. Davis’ top priority is to help you strengthen your own foundation of oral HEALTH.
Today’s health conscious adults look forward to remaining youthful far into the future. A bright smile is part of this picture. But the most important function of the mouth, we believe, is to begin the digestion of wholesome and delicious foods. The daily pleasure of eating well builds the foundation for a long, vigorous life.
Often restorative dentistry is seen mainly as a remedy for infection, decay, breakage or discomfort. This model of care has greatly improved quality of life and health over the days when such care was not widely available. Yet, the absence of infection or pain is only one step toward more optimum health. The mouth is more than a collection of unrelated parts. It is a biomechanical system designed to feed us the essential fuels for life.
“For abundant health and beautiful teeth, select your food wisely,”- Ralph Steinman, DDS, MS, Loma Linda University
If the system itself is disregarded, dysfunction may set in. The bite may shift, with trauma, cracking and wear to teeth and jaws. There may be a patchwork of dissimilar and non-compatible restorations breaking down. Tooth loss may occur. Chewing can then become increasingly difficult, with diminishing digestive function. As the bite shifts, so do alignment of head and neck. Often this leads to new stresses, inflammation and infection, dragging down the immune system. There is a better alternative.
For many, a time comes when dental wholeness requires special attention. Modern science is increasingly confirming what integrative practitioners have taught for a long time. The mouth is essential to a full life. Form, function and biology are each part of the whole.
The first step toward dental wellness is to learn what is happening in your mouth. Modern dentistry offers an increasing array of options. Our goal is to empower you to formulate your long-term strategy for oral health, making the choices that suit you best. We recognize that these choices may be different for different people, at different times of life.
The Diagnodent can reveal cavities missed by X-rays.
This is why we begin with a process of CO-diagnosis, to help you and the dentist both see the patterns that shape your dental experience. This includes a thorough, individualized examination, a detailed explanation of what is found and what may be possible, and time to answer your questions. We also seek to provide patients with holistic, nutrition-based perspectives on oral and whole health.
We employ all digital X-rays in our office, for environmental as well as health reasons. Since we opened our Asheville office in 2001, X-ray chemicals have never been used in our facility. Dental X-rays do the best job of finding cavities between teeth and problems with the tooth roots.
For the biting surface of teeth, our Diagnodent laser uses fluorescent light to detect decay, even before X-rays could find it in the same location. Many people don’t realize that widespread use of fluoride has made it harder to detect cavities on the biting surfaces of teeth. Fluoride washing over teeth hardens the tooth surface, but bacteria can still penetrate through a microscopic defect. Decay can then destroy tooth structure from the inside out, before it is seen on the surface. A Berne University, Switzerland, study found that X-rays and instruments are no more than 67% effective in diagnosing decay on the biting surface of a tooth, while the Diagnodent is more than 90% accurate.
We employ modern dental technologies and materials, including non-metallic, tooth colored fillings; porcelain-ceramics; and for those who prefer, fine golds. We do not place amalgam fillings or nickel crowns.; neither has ever been placed in this facility. We seek to provide minimally invasive dentistry, preserving natural, healthy tooth structure where feasible.
Because of our concern for whole health, when replacing old dental materials and selecting new ones, we follow protective protocols recommended by the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology, a scientific organization that promotes biocompatibility in dentistry and a focus on whole health.
The IAOMT advocates both precautions during removal of old metals, and the use of high quality replacement materials that are compatible with human tissues. For patients with special concerns about metals or chemicals, biocompatibility testing is an option that can help personalize the selection of dental materials.
With our culture’s emphasis on beauty, great smiles and fresh breath, it might be surprising to learn that Americans continue to experience an epidemic of bacterial gum disease. Research tells us that 80 percent of the adult population has some degree of this inflammatory infection, which is the primary cause of adult tooth loss, and is contagious. Gum disease is a real threat to whole health, and the risk grows as we age.
“Oral health is a major part of the prevention of any inflammatory disease.”
– Dr. Dan Sindelar, president and co-founder of the American Academy for Oral Systemic Health
A fiery blast of inflammation is the body’s normal bio-chemical response to infection or injury. But it’s not healthy for inflammation to burn constantly. The chronic inflammation associated with gum disease is linked with multiple systemic illnesses – cardiovascular disease, infective endocarditis, rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, osteoporosis, respiratory disease, some cancers, even prematurely aged skin. Expectant mothers with gum disease are up to 7 times more likely to deliver pre-mature, low birth weight babies.
Our dental hygiene program seeks to help patients prevent this common form of mouth infection, or to treat it as early and non-surgically as possible. We also follow the Biocompatible Periodontal Therapy protocols of the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology.
Holistic dental tradition strongly advocates a natural, whole foods diet as the only true basis for health, including oral health. Health begins BEFORE conception, and it can take more than one lifetime to build it back. Modern humans are all playing catch-up. We live in a world of depleted soils; polluted air and water, factory farming that depends heavily on pesticides, herbicides and pharmaceuticals; and an industrially-processed, devitalized food supply.
Dentistry can help in smaller ways and larger ways. We strive to find and treat oral problems before they get worse. We also seek to empower patients to make both smaller and larger nutritional changes to support what a dentist might do.
The mouth is a complex biological system and powerful mechanical device bathed in a corrosive salt-water environment. Changes continually occur throughout life. Today, nearly everyone’s mouth requires periodic re-evaluation, maintenance and repair – for best results, by a dentist who knows you and your mouth well.
We recommend a faithful and individualized schedule for periodic care. Finding and treating a problem while it is small is one of the best ways to head off more serious problems. If you owned a luxury automobile, you would change the oil and keep up with repairs. Your dental health will be precious long after your car is traded away!