Just Because You Have a Hammer – Not Everything is About Dentistry!
Just because you have a hand piece, everything shouldn’t look like a tooth. In this vein, “holistic” dentists must be careful not to view all health problems as being caused by mercury fillings, root canals, and/or cavitations. Yes, all of these can potentially harm a person and cause health problems, but we must not lose sight of the fact that attached to the teeth are people.People are complex and we must get to know our patients in the total sense. Unfortunately, all too often, I have seen patients having their mercury removed, root canals extracted, and cavitations surgically treated, and their health did not improve. Some say they initially felt better, but this was short term, or they got worse. I believe this happens for a few reasons:
Three cases illustrate my point:
Heidi came to me in severe pain. She had an infected lower molar that was extracted six months earlier, and now had pain coming from that area. She was in tears, and couldn’t function properly on a day-to-day basis. She was told that there was a small piece of mercury filling in the bone of the extraction site and this was causing a cavitation (see newsletter Cavitation), and that was the source of her pain. She came to me to have the area surgically cleaned out. When I questioned her as to why the dentist who diagnosed the problem was not doing it, she replied, “He won’t do the surgery until I have removed all my mercury fillings. I need to have the surgery done NOW, I can’t take the pain.”
The problem here was that this “new” holistic dentist saw some mercury in the bone, and automatically thought cavitation and mercury. He failed to do things to substantiate his diagnosis. One might say that this is due to poor diagnostic skills, but having seen this too often, I would attribute it to tunnel vision. As it turns out, the pain was due to TMJ dysfunction (see TMJ Treatment). The pain was quickly resolved without her having all her mercury fillings replaced and cavitation surgery.
Another case involves a patient, Laura, who came to me after having four root-canaled teeth removed, all her mercury fillings replaced and three cavitation surgeries. After all this, she still had chronic fatigue, achy joints and constant headaches. She had spent upwards of $18,000 without any improvement. Can root canals, mercury fillings, and cavitations cause these kinds of symptoms? Yes, but we cannot jump to get our “hammer” too quickly. Laura’s real problem was Lyme disease. I referred her to my son, Dr. Adam Breiner, who has helped her tremendously by treating the Lyme.
Diane came into the office complaining of constant pain on the right side of her face. Several teeth were sensitive to hot/cold and even brushing. She had one root canal on the lower right and several deep mercury fillings, and an impacted wisdom tooth. The muscles relating to the temporomandibular joint were all tender. This, along with the fact that she had clicking in the joint, demonstrated that she had TMJ dysfunction; however, this had never given her a problem in the past. Also, there was no single tooth that seemed to be causing the constant pain. Energetic testing did not indicate a tooth problem. Upon questioning, Diane stated the pain started a month after she suffered a miscarriage. This emotional trauma turned out to be her underlying problem. An appropriate homeopathic remedy relieved her facial pain.
I read and observe homeopathic cases where the patient has resolution of various ailments, including cancer, and there has been no dental treatment. They still have their mercury fillings, root canals, etc. As holistic dentists, we must realize that removal of mercury fillings, extraction of root-canaled teeth and treatment of cavitations are not necessarily the answer to everyone’s health problems. Even if this does help some of the issues, I find that further treatment at a nonphysical level is always needed (see You Look Like An Egg to Me). Keep in mind-Not Everything is About Dentistry! This is something for all holistic dentists and patients to remember.
© 2017, Mark A. Breiner, DDS
The information presented is for educational purposes only. Please consult a qualified dentist or health practitioner for diagnosis and treatment.