Is Your Body Ready for an Implant?
When we think of improving our smile with beautiful teeth, we don’t often think what creating that smile with dental procedures may do to our overall health. We just trust our dentist to make the right decision. But, if your dentist isn’t a holistic dentist, he or she would not necessarily look at the effects dental treatments would have on your body.
Yes, there are “normal” risk factors dentists take into consideration, especially when it comes to dental surgery. But is this enough? Would a dentist who does not practice holistic dentistry know all the effects dental surgery can create on your body? Probably not.
For example, it is known to general dentists that diabetes is a risk factor before oral surgery. But it is not so commonly known that things like high cholesterol or vitamin D deficiency may cause bone loss and inflammation, which would definitely affect oral surgery procedures. Vitamin D plays an important role in reducing the effects of inflammation and helps improve the body’s natural immune reactions. This is especially important for bone grafts and procedures such as dental implants.
Daily needs of vitamin D are 4000 IU, and the lack of sufficient vitamin D in one’s diet is very common: An estimated 1 billion people worldwide are vitamin D deficient. Forty to 100% of elderly men and women in our country are deficient in vitamin D.*
Vitamin D is not only beneficial in dental procedures – deficiencies of this powerhouse vitamin also increase the risk of mental decline in elderly people. Vitamin D helps ensure that dental implants will last long because it successfully helps integrate the implants into the bone. Further, vitamin D is good for your gums and helps reduce bacteria levels in the mouth.
Vitamin D is the “Sunshine Vitamin” and is produced in the body by sunlight. So 10 to 20 minutes in the sun will replenish your vitamin D sufficiently. If you’re not so lucky to live in a sunny climate, you could use an UV lamp or use supplements containing vitamin D.
If you are considering dental implants, first make sure you choose zirconia implants instead of metal implants, because metal can create ill effects on your health. Next, get your Vitamin D level checked and supplement your body with vitamin D to help your bones accept the implants and avoid complications such as inflammation. Not all Vitamin D supplements are created equal, so be sure to ask us about our recommendations. At the Holistic Dental Center we can even do a chairside test for your Vitamin D level. Also be sure your cholesterol is in check and, if you need to make changes in your diet, now is the time before implant placement to increase your chances of a very successful outcome. Your bonus will be additional benefits such as preventing heart disease and other health issues.
Ask Dr. Gashinsky what the best approach will be before you choose for dental surgery or implants. As naturopathic doctor and holistic dentist, Dr. G will give you the best advice on top of the best possible treatment!
*Luegmayr E, Glantschnig H, Wesolowski GA, et al. Osteoclast formation, survival and morphology are highly dependent on exogenous cholesterol/lipoproteins. Cell Death Differ. 2004; 11(suppl 1):S108–S118.