Mercury-Free Dentistry for Better Health
Jun 02, 2011 09:18AM
Most individuals that use the dental services of William E. Lovett, D.D.S., in Naples, are either referred by physicians such as neurologist David Perlmutter, M.D., author of The Better Brain Book, or have already done the research that helps them to make better, more health-conscious decisions.
Known for treating patients from a perspective of whole body health, rather than just addressing the teeth in their mouth, Lovett spends significant time with each individual in order to learn about their lifestyle and health issues. He also educates them about the connection between their mouth and the overall health of their body.
“The more my patients know, the more likely they are to take better care of their teeth and gums and to work at reducing the bacteria in their mouth, which is directly tied to the likelihood of heart attacks and strokes,” notes Lovett. A holistic dentist, he has been using a mercury-free approach for more than 25 years because of concerns about health risks from mercury.
Lovett explains why mercury-free restorations, which include all-porcelain crowns, porcelain fused to metal (preferably gold) crowns, porcelain onlays or inlays and composite bonded restorations, should be an integral part of aligning oral health with whole-body wellness.
“Understanding the structure of a tooth enables one to further understand the importance of the teeth within total body health,” advises Lovett, who points out that every tooth is a living organ, with an outer layer of enamel and an inner layer of dentin. If the dentin is penetrated, the blood and nerve supply to the tooth is affected. “Mercury fillings always require penetration into the dentin, which means that the health of the ‘organ’ [tooth] and the whole body can be affected, as well,” he says.
Darlene Lofgren, a Naples resident of 43 years, understands that connection well. “I had been experiencing a lot of pain in all my joints, and when it was suggested that I had arthritis, I visited Dr. Perlmutter to see if there was anything I could do naturally to help manage the discomfort,” says Lofgren, who notes that she had a substantial number of mercury fillings at the time.
Lofgren underwent a physical test for heavy metals, and based on the results, Perlmutter suggested that she have her mercury fillings removed. “I’d had them since childhood,” notes Lofgren, “but within a month after they were removed, all my pain was gone and the mercury levels went down, so I only needed medication for short time to remove it completely.”
“The American Dental Association was made aware of the health risks of mercury by the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology (IAOMT) more than 10 years ago,” advises Lovett, “and although their scientific studies showed proof of mercury’s negative impact, IAOMT scientists were not allowed to testify in open hearings that debated the issue.”
Biological dentists that belong to IAOMT, as well as the Holistic Dental Association (HAD) and the International Academy of Biological Dentistry and Medicine (IABDM) represent a population that comprises less than one-half of 1 percent of practicing dentists. These organizations have established training programs, scientific studies, strict biological treatment standards and yearly conferences for biological dentists, whose holistic philosophy is based on the theory that the whole is more than the sum of its parts or symptoms.
“Initially, I had to do my own research to locate experts I could study and train with for the benefit of my education in biological dentistry,” explains Lovett, who has trained with them in California, Chicago and New Orleans.
“One of my mentors told me that the shortest amount of time required to learn everything I needed to know and master all the intricate aspects of this field was approximately 15 years,” jokes Lovett. “The majority of dentists have yet to begin. Therefore, I suggest that individuals who take to heart the IAOMT’s recent report that suggests a ‘phase-down, with the goal of eventual phase-out’ of mercury amalgam, or ‘silver’ fillings, should consult the IAOMT website to find a biological dentist in their area,” says Lovett.
William E. Lovett, D.D.S., Coventry Square, 111th Ave. N., Ste. 5, Naples 34108. Call 239-593-4911 or visit RestorativeDentist.com.
Dr. David Perlmutter, Perlmutter Health Center, 800 Goodlette Rd. N., Ste. 270, Naples 34102. Call 239-649-7400 or visit PerlHealth.com.
For information about the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology, visit IAOMT.org.