Holistic dentist wants to pull my tooth instead of a root canal.

I have a had a nagging toothache that has been going on for a few months now. It got pretty bad and I finally went into our family dentist. He suggested a root canal. But I wanted to see if there was a more natural option, so I decided to go see a holistic dentist here in town. Well, he is telling me the tooth needs to be pulled and replaced with a false tooth. I want to do the most natural thing, but I really don’t want to lose my tooth. Every time I try to research which option is better, it seems like every dentist contradicts the other. Do you have any insight? I’m ready to move on from this annoying toothache!

– Carolyn in Arizona


You touch on a very interesting point. Dentists contradict each other all the time. Remember, each dentist makes recommendations based on their personal dental philosophies and experience. This isn’t uncommon when seeking treatment from a holistic dentist. A traditional dentist and a natural dentist take completely different angles when it comes to solving problems.

The traditional dentist is recommending a root canal be done, because that is what is taught in dental school. When the pulp (inside) of the tooth is infected, the nerves are dying. A root canal removes the pulp and disinfects it. The tooth will be sealed off and with antibiotics, the infection is treated. This scenario allows you to save your natural tooth structure, which the majority of dentists in the United States would agree on. If the root canal fails, the process is repeated.

A holistic dentist feels differently about the infection inside your tooth. He feels that the infection cannot be completely eradicated with a root canal, because there are many canals and nerve endings, as well as dental tubules involved with each tooth. Therefore, a holistic dentist feels that the root canal may fail. They don’t want any bacteria or infection spreading to other areas of the body, so that is likely why he is recommending the tooth be extracted.

There may be a compromise to consider if you are interested.  Some dentists believe in a non-traditional method that sterilizes the entire tooth. It involves leaving a sterilizing agent inside the canal for an extended period of time, about a month or so. With this technique, the thinking is that this will give the agents enough time to permeate the tubules to eliminate the potential for further spreading of the bacteria. This is a newer technique, so it isn’t mainstream by any means.

Hopefully, this gives you some insight into both approaches that were given. Good luck as you figure out the best treatment option for you. Remember, once the tooth is gone, it is gone for good!

This post is sponsored by Atlanta cosmetic dentist Flax Dental.

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