3 lesser-known causes of tooth decay

Holistic approach to dental care can help you get to the ‘root’ of the problem

Still getting cavities despite your best efforts? Getting to the root of the issue could make all the difference in your oral health.

While too many sweets, acidic food or beverages and poor oral hygiene habits are often blamed for causing decay, dry mouth, teeth grinding and clenching, and even sleeping and/or breathing disorders can also be contributing factors.

“To put it simply, the decaying process starts when a buildup of bacteria plaque in the mouth produces acids. The acids in the plaque break down the enamel and cause cavities or tooth decay. But in reality, that’s only a small part of a much bigger picture,” says Dr. Carla Yamashiro, owner of Ecologic Dentistry in Bonney Lake.

Ecologic Dentistry takes a holistic approach to dental health, with a focus on getting to the root of dental issues. Dr. Yamashiro and her team use advanced, minimally invasive technologies and materials that are least toxic to the body.

“Our holistic and natural approach to dentistry supports your uniqueness as an individual within a unified whole,” Dr. Yamashiro says. “Looking at what else could be causing decay is just one example of how we take a whole-body approach when caring for our patients.”

Dr. Yamashiro and the Ecologic Dentistry team.

Dr. Yamashiro and the Ecologic Dentistry team.

What else could be causing your tooth decay?

  1. Dry mouth: Saliva acts as a natural buffer, neutralizing the acids, and can reduce tooth decay. Saliva also has digestive enzymes to begin the breakdown of carbohydrates and fats, and dry mouth – or a lack of saliva – can impede this process. Breathing with your mouth open can leave you with a dry mouth and a host of other health concerns, as can certain medications.
  2. Teeth grinding and clenching: Grinding and clenching cuts off the blood circulation, limiting the oxygen and nutrients reaching your teeth. Teeth starved of oxygen and nutrients are more prone to tooth decay.
  3. Sleeping and/or breathing disorders: Healthy breathing is nasal breathing. Nasal breathing activates the lower lobes of the lungs which in turn activates the rest, digest, repair, grow and detox part of our nervous system.

While treating the underlying cause of decay can help to prevent it from occurring, regular scheduled cleanings at the dentist also help you avoid the potential complications when tartar buildup does happen, Dr. Yamashiro says.

While some people need to visit their dentist every six months, others should book cleanings every three months – everyone’s needs are different and a holistic approach can help you figure out what is right for your body.

Book your next appointment at Ecologic Dentistry and see the difference holistic dentistry can make to your smile. Find more information at ecologicdentistry.com, call 253-863-7005 or book by email at thenaturalchoice@ecologicdentistry.com.

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