From Attention Deficit to Sleep Apnea

The Serious Consequences of Dental Deformities

Virtually everyone in the Weston A. Price Foundation is well aware of the incomparable anthropological research conducted by Dr. Price. In the 1930s, this dedicated holistic dental physician spent his summers studying fourteen traditional cultures around the world. In his subsequent book, Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, Price wrote that none of these native peoples were vegetarian, but in every case consumed some combination of meat and organ meats, fish, shellfish, eggs, and raw milk, cheese and butter.


He further found that these groups, who were not yet exposed to the refined and toxic foods of modern civilization, displayed three exceptionally healthy characteristics:

  1. They had almost no cavities—in general, less than 0.5 percent
    2. They had normal facial and dental bone development with room for all thirty-two teeth
    3. They were observed to be very “happy and contented” with “a high sense of humor,” and often displayed “superior intelligence.”1

Contrast these signs of optimal mental and physical health with today:

 

  1. Dental cavities are quite commonplace, and are even considered by the general populace to be an unpleasant but inevitable aspect of growing up.
  2. Similarly, extraction of the wisdom teeth (third molars) is now a normal rite of passage for nearly all teens and young adults, since almost no one has the craniofacial and dental bone development required to house all thirty-two teeth.
  3. Finally, the very large percentages of both children and adults who are prescribed SSRI drugs such as Prozac, Paxil and Zoloft, clearly demonstrate that anxiety and depression in this country have become truly epidemic. Additionally, the growing number of children prescribed Adderall, Concerta and other medications for ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder), ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), and other learning and behavioral disorders, vividly illustrates the serious challenges younger generations are currently experiencing both psychologically and intellectually.
Fortunately, more and more people are becoming aware of the crucial importance of a traditional nutrient-dense diet, thanks in large part to the teachings of the Weston A. Price Foundation (WAPF) and the Price-Pottenger Nutritional Foundation (PPNF). However, few are aware of the serious ramifications of the dental arch deformities that result in dental malocclusions (bad bites) from the modern nutrient-deficient diets. This article explores this subject in depth, and provides guidelines for the prevention and treatment of the dental consequences of dietary malnutrition.

fall09-occlusionv2The occlusion is the way the upper and lower teeth fit together. The temporomandibular joint, or TMJ, is a ball-and-socket hinge-like joint that becomes secondarily malaligned from a malocclusion, or bad bite.

Dental Maloclusions

Your occlusion is the way that your upper and lower teeth fit together. A malocclusion, often referred to as a bad bite, occurs when the teeth do not occlude, that is, do not fit together properly, upon closing. When the teeth do not occlude properly, the jaws then begin to move out of alignment too, which pulls the temporomandibular joint, the jaw joint or TMJ, out of its normal position. This can create another closely related syndrome, well known among holistic dentists, called temporomandibular dysfunction, or TMD. TMD syndrome can also develop from trauma, such as head injuries or whiplash accidents that overstretch the delicately balanced ligaments and discs in the temporomandibular joint.

Causes of Maloclusions

The major cause of malocclusions is inadequate nutrition in one’s formative years, as Dr. Price so incontrovertibly proved in the early twentieth century. This malnutrition and the ensuing dental malocclusions result from insufficient maternal nutrition before and during pregnancy, and inadequate nutrition during breastfeeding (or toxic formula replacements) during infancy and early growth.

Pre -Conception and Pregnancy

Once again, the wisdom from our ancestors proves true. Price found that traditional cultures followed special preconception diets, often one and even two years before birth. These diets included some combination of grass-fed meats and organ meats such as liver, eggs from pastured chickens, raw milk and butter, cod liver oil, fish eggs, fermented foods (cheese, yogurt, sauerkraut, etc.), soaked nuts and freshly ground grains, and fresh fruits and vegetables. These foods supplied important nutrients essential for proper infant development such as vitamins A, D, E, and K2 in grass fed animal fats, vitamins A, D, E, and K2 and omega-3 fatty acids in cod liver oil, and biotin in liver and eggs yolks.

Pesticides

Another pernicious influence on normal jaw and tooth development is the extensive use of pesticides, insecticides and other toxic chemicals since the Second World War. These chemicals have a twofold effect—both on the mother’s nutrient status and the baby’s developing health. Unfortunately, little research effort has been conducted on this issue, and appropriate longitudinal (long-term) studies to accurately measure the full effect of these chemicals on tooth and bone growth would be quite costly. Certainly, the chemical companies are not interested.

However, there is some research evidence that these chemicals greatly contribute to bone and teeth deformities. In one study in Ireland, the use of fungicides to combat potato blight in the 1980s was linked to a high incidence of various physical malformations, including bone and facial deformities in babies.9 In another six-year investigation, published in Wise Traditions, herbicides and fungicides were found to be culpable in causing severe bone and dental abnormalities in horses, deer, elk, antelopes, birds and other animals. Astonishingly, this study that identified numerous malformations including overbites and overjets (“buck teeth”), underbites (“bulldog appearance”), crooked and crowded teeth, and cleft palates, was conducted in Bitterroot, Montana – ironically advertised as the “Last Best Place” on earth due to the purported clean air and water.10

One explanation is that pesticides greatly use up our stores of vitamin A, so critical for proper bone formation. In fact, the toxicity of these chemicals derives from the fact that they disrupt vitamin A pathways.

Dental Fillings

Ironically, another major contributor to malocclusions is modern dental care. When poor nutrition causes dental cavities, dentists repair this hole with a filling, inlay, onlay, or crown. These dental restorations—ranging from the smallest, a filling, to the largest, a crown—are not always placed at the correct height to correspond to the original tooth When too high, they create interference with the rest of the bite and can hit the opposing tooth too hard, which over time inflames the surrounding nerves, ligaments and gum tissue in both teeth.

The opposite can also occur. That is, the dental restoration can be placed too low. In fact, to avoid the former problem of interference from restorations that are too high, many dentists are currently taught in dental school to slightly “dish out” the filling. Although this solves the problem of interference, after the placement of several dished out fillings, the patient’s original tooth height is significantly reduced. This can eventually lead to a mild to moderate malocclusion as the teeth no longer occlude, that is fit together, appropriately.

Additionally, in a vain attempt to find their original bite, patients will often begin to clench and grind their teeth, which only compounds the problem more by further eroding the height of the teeth. The answer to the too high or too low problem, of course, is a well-made (and non-toxic) dental restoration—filling, inlay, onlay or crown—that is carefully sized to copy the original tooth’s architecture as exactly as possible, and placed by a well-trained and technically skilled holistic dentist.

The Great Imposter

Since malocclusions and the related jaw joint disorders (TMD) create such a wide range of disturbances in the body, this syndrome has been labeled the “Great Imposter.” TMD mimics many other chronic issues, which also have numerous symptoms, such as food allergies and candida (dysbiosis) syndrome. Further, since malocclusions cause so many diverse signs and symptoms, often quite distal and remote from the head and neck, many doctors who are not familiar with this syndrome do not recognize it, and therefore neither accurately diagnose it nor treat it through an appropriate referral.

Autonomic Failure

In one dramatic animal study from Japan that will make animal lovers cringe, researchers ground approximately 3 mm off the upper and lower teeth of beagle dogs on one side (the right side) of their mouth to determine the systemic effects of malocclusions. The results were dramatic. Every one of these dogs subsequently exhibited numerous signs of “autonomic failure,” including weight loss, hair loss and the loss of luster of their coats, as well as excessive salivation and lacrimation (tearing). Additionally these dogs demonstrated significant motor and postural abnormalities including resting tremors, muscle weakness, abnormal sitting postures, inability to walk straight, and lameness.11 Of course, pain is difficult to measure in animals, but it is highly likely with these abnormal musculoskeletal signs that these dogs suffered from chronic joint and muscle pain. Using this research example, those individuals with chronic shoulder, hip, knee, or back pain who have unsuccessfully tried many treatments and suspect they may have a malocclusion, should consider consulting a holistic dentist or orthodontist to see whether functional appliance therapy is indicated (see Treatment section).

fall09-dentalcasts
V-shaped upper palate (left) of a modernized adult compared to the U-shaped palate of a primitive adult raised on nutrient-dense food. The narrowing of the palate is due to nutritional deficiencies.

Respiratory Distress

Mild to major respiratory and breathing problems are also classic symptoms of malocclusions. In fact, it is no mystery that crooked and crowded teeth (malocclusions) and sleep apnea have both continued to rise at an unprecedented pace. This respiratory nightly distress and resulting insomnia is closely tied to a narrow, “V-shaped” palate, which pushes up on the floor of the nasal cavity, reducing one’s breathing efficiency. This forces many children (and adults) to open their mouth at night to receive more oxygen.

Raymond Silkman, a holistic dental physician and WAPF contributor, has described this mouth-breathing habit as a chronic distress signal to the autonomic nervous system—similar to what happened to the dogs in the Japanese study. Dr. Silkman has found that these mouth-breathing patients live with a kind of permanent tension, and chronically experience a sense of being on “high alert” from their amped-up sympathetic nervous systems.12 The resulting mild to major systemic anoxia (lack of oxygen) has a negative effect on every cell in the body, and has been further linked to chronic anxiety, certain types of headaches, hypertension, reduced heart rate (bradycardia), blood-clotting dysregulation, enuresis (bedwetting), and chronic nose, ear and sinus infections.13

INTELLIGENCE QUOTIENT

Another dental pioneer akin to Dr. Price was Dr. A.C. Fonder, author of the renowned holistic dental text, The Dental Physician, who studied the effect malocclusions had in schoolchildren. In a group of one hundred schoolchildren, Fonder found that in the “remedial” group of forty-seven children who scored below average on I.Q. and achievement tests, one hundred percent of them had minor (17 percent) to severe (83 percent) dental malocclusions. This was in striking contrast to the other fifty-three “above average” students in the study, who had only one severe (2 percent) malocclusion, forty-three minor (81 percent) malocclusions, and nine ideal occlusions (17 percent).14

Psychological Problems and Hearing

In this same study, the remedial group of students all exhibited (100 percent) psychological problems, with a significant percentage (31.9 percent) having serious issues. Whereas the advanced students, with mostly minor to no malocclusions, had no (0 percent) serious psychological problems, and the majority (74 percent) of these high-performing students demonstrated no mental or emotional issues at all.15

Finally, knowing that one’s hearing capacity is closely correlated to intelligence as well as closely associated with the proper functioning of the neighboring jaw joint (TMJ), Fonder additionally measured the audiometric, or hearing acuity, of these two groups. The results were again striking: Eighty-three percent of the remedial group of schoolchildren with serious psychological problems had a 15-40 percent loss of their overall hearing acuity. Once again, in contrast, 100 percent of the advanced students with ideal occlusions had above average hearing acuity.16

Some Noteworthy Symptoms for Self -Diagnosis

Although a definitive diagnosis of a malocclusion can only be made by a specially trained dentist or orthodontist (and a few holistic physicians), there are some significant signs and symptoms that can help individuals decide whether it is likely enough to warrant an appointment. These include difficulty breathing and related insomnia and sleep apnea, difficulty swallowing (such as difficulty swallowing pills), pain upon opening or closing the jaw (or a history or having the jaw locked open or closed for a period of time), tension headaches, and chronic neck (and even middle or lower back) pain. A “noisy” jaw joint—that is, popping, clicking, cracking, or crepitus (grating sound) is also an indicator of a possible malocclusion and TMD. (It should be noted, however, that the authors of one journal article estimated that from 60-80 percent of the population makes some kind of noise when moving their jaws. Therefore, individuals should only count this sign as significant when the TMJ noises are especially excessive and/or loud.)

Further, all parents of children with cognitive, behavioral, or other neuropsychiatric symptoms, including ADD (Attention Deficit Syndrome), ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Syndrome), OCD (Obsessive- Compulsive Disorder), Tourette’s, Autism and Asperger’s, Down’s Syndrome, should consider having a consultation with a holistic dentist who is trained in functional orthodontic therapy. This is especially warranted when the child has crowded teeth, a narrow (“V- versus U-shaped”) palate, or one or both parents have significant malocclusions.

Finally, one of the almost “pathognomonic” signs (that is, a sign that is so characteristic of a particular syndrome that on that basis alone a positive diagnosis can be made) of a significantly disturbing occlusion, is being unable to find your bite. In fact, the typical response to this query during a physical exam is “which bite?” Thus, since these patients don’t have a comfortable place to rest their teeth, they search for one of several bite positions, or find an adaptive but unsatisfying place to rest their teeth. This dysfunctional bite position can also be helpful diagnostically, since a malocclusion is further confirmed when it is accompanied by various facial grimaces and other signs of disturbance and general disquiet in one’s expression.

Treatment of a Maloclusion

There are two major pathways of treatment for malocclusions: conventional orthodontic care and functional orthodontic care. With conventional orthodontic care, the “cure” can often be worse than the disease. It consists of the extraction of four or more teeth—typically the first bicuspids—followed by the placement of braces and then retainers to hold the teeth in place. The sacrifice of these four healthy bicuspid teeth is done to alleviate the common problem of crowding secondary to jawbone underdevelopment, brought on by faulty infant and childhood nutrition. In contrast, functional orthodontic care rarely calls for extractions; instead, the dentist applies oral appliances or splints, to assist Mother Nature and encourage the growth of underdeveloped dental arches. Over time, these functional appliances gently move and expand the upper and lower dental arches, allowing the teeth and bones to grow according to—or at least more closely approximating—their original genetic blueprint of development.

The Famous British Identical Twin Study

The negative consequences of conventional orthodontia were dramatically demonstrated in what holistic dentists commonly refer to as the “British twin study.” In this clinical study, identical twins with Class 1 malocclusions (crowded teeth) were treated in two very different ways. The first twin, termed “OE” for “Orthodontic Extraction,” was treated in the conventional orthodontic manner, with extraction of her four bicuspid teeth followed by braces. The other twin, termed “OF” for “Orthodontic Functional,” had no tooth extractions and was fitted for a functional appliance (the so-called Fraenkel appliance) to expand and develop her teeth and jawbones.17 Treatment lasted for thirty months for both twins. As can be seen in the before-and-after photos, the results were dramatic.

Dr. H.L. Eirew, who published this clinical study in the International Journal of Orthodontics,18 made the following observations: “Twin ‘OF,’ treated by a Fraenkel appliance, shows a pleasing round arch form. The upper dental arch was widened by 4-5 mm between the first premolars [bicuspids] and by 2 mm between the first molars. Lower arch development was similar. . . Facially the girl is good looking, with a rounded facial form matching her attractive rounded dental arch. She is happy with the result of her orthodontic treatment and considers the effort to wear the appliance well rewarded. . .

“Twin ‘OE,’ treated by extractions shows some relief of crowding and incisal irregularity. She still [however] has a tapering archform accentuated by a narrow arch width. There has been no lateral development. Residual extractions spaces are still visible after more than 3 years. The cheek teeth have slipped out of correct occlusion and contact on both sides. The deep bite persists. Dental arch appearance is poor. . .

“Her facial deterioration has been quite disastrous. In the years from 12 to 14 she has become a ‘little old woman’ in relation to her sister. The changes shown resemble those seen in the elderly when bone resorption follows multiple tooth loss”19 [emphasis by author].

Most distressing of all was the emotional effect orthodontia had on twin OE. Dr. Eirew noted that she was “acutely aware of the marked difference in appearance between herself and her sister, and that she has developed a considerable inferiority complex.”20 In fact, twin OE was so distraught as the “ugly sister,” that she dropped out of the study and further investigation of the two cases had to be discontinued.21

fall09-twins1 LEFT: Before photos of the identical twins. The twin in the upper photos received conventional treatment involving extraction of the teeth. The twin in the lower photo received treatment with an expansion apparatus.
RIGHT: After photos of the twins. Note the wider and more attractive facial structure of the twin who received the expansion apparatus.Reprinted with kind permission of Dr. Terrance J. Spahl
fall09-twins2

The Miracle of Expansion Appliances

Dr. Weston A. Price, the quintessential holistic dental physician, not only specialized in nutrition and the treatment of dental foci (such as failed root canals), but was a trailblazer in functional orthodontics as well. In another dramatic functional orthodontic case, Price widened the narrow upper arch of a Down’s Syndrome teen approximately 1/2 inch with a palatal expansion rod device located between his upper teeth. In so doing, the new maxillary bone filled in rapidly. This space was later maintained with a fixed bridge that had two additional teeth attached.22

Once again, the results from expansion of the palate were striking. This sixteen-year-old patient was previously measured with an I.Q. of that of a four-year-old, and he was so seriously physically and mentally impaired that he typically played all day with blocks on the floor. After six months of palate expansion however, he was able to go to the grocery story and bring back correct change to his mother, change trains and make transfers on streetcars accurately and safely, and read children’s stories and newspaper headlines. This teen’s physical appearance also dramatically transformed. He grew three inches in four months, developed whiskers, and his genitals developed from those of a child to a man. These hormonal maturation changes were the direct result of the stimulation of the pituitary gland through the expansion of the sella turcica—the saddle-shaped depression in the sphenoid cranial bone that houses the pituitary. In Down’s syndrome, the failure of the development of the middle third of the face and the pituitary has been well documented. Finally, this teen’s severe sleep apnea was relieved when the expansion device opened up his completely occluded left nostril so he could breathe properly.24

fall09-figure7-expansionrod-a
The progress of palatal expansion over a six-month period through an expansion rod in Dr. Price’s Down’s Syndrome patient.

fall09-downssyndromeboy
The before and after photos of the dramatic effect of palatal expansion in a Down’s Syndrome teen.

Primary Molar Build -Ups in Young Children

For those parents who are concerned about their children’s compliance in wearing oral appliances, as well as the cost, an alternative is available for certain malocclusions and age groups. Since potential Class II malocclusions (overbites) can be detected as early as ages four or five (or even earlier), a simple build-up of plastic composite material on the child’s primary (deciduous or baby) lower molars can encourage a normal occlusion over time, or at least greatly reduce the need for later expansion appliances and possibly even braces. Further, this technique has the great benefit of compliance, in that composite material properly fitted and intermittently equilibrated (shaved down as needed), does not require any effort or willpower on the part of the child. Dr. Merle Loudon, a Washington state holistic dentist, enumerates the advantages of this simple method in his study published in The Functional Orthodontist journal:

“Primary crown buildups can result in many added benefits for a young, overclosed patient. Early treatment can save months of later orthodontic vertical treatment. Temporomandibular condylar [TMJ] position may be greatly enhanced. The return to a normal tongue position will allow for normal growth of the mandible.”25

Contact Information for Functional Orthodontic Treatment

Individuals or parents of children who suspect that they have a moderate to major malocclusion, that is, one that warrants functional orthodontic intervention, should contact the following three dental associations in the U.S. to find a nearby holistic dentist or orthodontist who specializes in the treatment of malocclusions and TMD: The American Academy of Craniofacial Pain (www.aacfp.org), the American Academy of Gnathological Orthopedics (www.aago.com), and the American Association of Functional Orthodontics (www.aafo.org).

Conclusion

Due primarily to the serious nutritional deficiencies in our formative years of development, dental malocclusions have become pandemic in our modern world. These “bad bites” have been correlated with local symptoms such as neck and jaw pain, headaches, ear, nose and throat problems and sinus infections, as well as loss of hearing acuity. Disturbances to the brain and nervous system are also characteristic of this “great imposter” syndrome, including learning and behavioral disorders, sleep apnea, chronic anxiety and depression.

Although very few of us have perfect bites anymore, those individuals who think they may have significant malocclusions should consider consulting with a holistic dentist or functional orthodontist. Parents of children who suspect this dysfunction in their children should especially consider this treatment, since along with a nutrient-dense diet it can greatly augment their children’s dental and craniofacial development and support the full expression and functioning of their brain and nervous system.


SIDEBARS

BOTTLE FEEDING AND PALATE DEVELOPMENT

Does bottle feeding contribute to poor palate development? Many insist that it does, that the breast acts as a kind of orthodontic apparatus. The theory is that bottle-fed babies have significant mechanical and structural challenges due to the abnormal muscular action bottle-feeding imposes on the tongue. According to this point of view, when babies are breastfed, the infant obtains milk by a natural peristaltic, or wave-like motion of the tongue in order to compress the soft breast nipple against the hard palate, which in infants is actually quite malleable. This natural tongue movement is said to mold the palate into a “U” shape and support the proper development of the jaw.2 By contrast, according to this theory, the bottle-fed infant must employ a more forceful squeezing or “piston-like” tongue movement to obtain milk or formula from an artificial nipple, leading to a narrow and unnatural “V-shaped” hard palate.3 Bottle-feeding is also said to disrupt normal swallowing habits.

Proponents of this theory point to a 1981 study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, “Does Breastfeeding Protect Against Malocclusion? An Analysis of the 1981 Child Health Supplement to the National Health Interview Survey.” 4 This study did find an association of bottle feeding with malocclusion: children breastfed twelve months or more had a reported malocclusion incidence of about 16 percent, whereas those breastfed zero to three months had a reported malocclusion incidence of 33 percent. A serious flaw with the survey is the fact that the incidence of malocclusion was self reported by the parents, not determined by an orthodontic examination.

The authors cite another study, carried out in Czechoslovakia, which found a slight association between bottle-feeding and dental occlusions: among those breastfed less than three months or not at all, 36.4 percent had anomalies; among those breastfed four to six months, 32.1 percent had anomalies; and among those breastfed longer than six months, 24.2 percent had anomalies.5

By contrast, an informal survey of WAPF members or children of WAPF members who were adopted and fully bottle fed found that six out of seven had naturally straight teeth.6 Holistic dentist Raymond Silkman reports little correspondence between cranio-facial development and the length of time the child was breastfed. He has seen severe dental malocclusion in some fully breastfed children, noting that this usually occurs when the mother is a vegetarian or vegan.7

The problem with the published surveys is that it is impossible to separate the physical effects of bottle feeding from the nutritional deficiencies of the formula. The real question is, is it the bottle that causes dental deformities or what’s in the bottle? Clearly bottle-feeding does not necessarily condemn a child to having a narrow palate—nor does breastfeeding guarantee normal development. The experience of mothers feeding nutrient-dense raw milk baby formula to their adopted infants indicates that the key factor to normal facial development is nutrition, not the physical action of sucking on a bottle.

When properly nourished, a child will grow to conform to the genetic blueprint of a U-shaped palate and wide jaw. This pattern can be interrupted by the application of constant pressure—think of foot-binding in Asia or the custom of flattening the baby’s head with a board in South America. Bottle feeding is not a constant activity and when the baby is well-nourished, it is unlikely to contribute to palate deformation; but when the baby is not properly nourished, the physical action of bottle feeding may be a contributing factor, especially if the baby also sucks his thumb or a pacifier for many hours of the day. (Regarding thumb sucking, at least three large studies found no significant difference in thumbsucking habits between bottle-fed and breast-fed infants.8)

The wide variation in dental malformations, seen below, do not point to bottle feeding or thumb sucking as a major cause of palate malformation, in spite of what the dentist might believe. It is interesting to note that most baby mammals suck on a very narrow nipple, not a full breast, yet malocclusion is rare in the animal kingdom.
Sally Fallon Morell

fall09-teethdentalanomalies fall09-piglet fall09-monkeybaby

THE VISIBLE RESULTS OF TRADITIONAL AND MODERNIZED DIETS

LEFT: Photographs by Dr. Weston Price show the excellent dental development in isolated villagers; all members of the village enjoyed excellent facial structure and freedom from dental decay. The diet consisted of raw dairy products and sourdough rye bread.
RIGHT: Compared to images of splendid facial development (above) the photos of modernized Peruvians (below) show the serious effects of a modern refined diet to normal craniofacial and dental development.

fall09-swissprimitive untitled

©Copyrighted by The Price-Pottenger Nutrition Foundation. All Rights Reserved. www.ppnf.org

 

HOW TO CHOOSE A HOLISTIC DENTIST

When choosing a dentist it is important to note that in addition to whether or not the dentist uses mercury amalgams versus less toxic materials, dental consumers can also differentiate between holistic and not-so-holistic dentists through their choice of various dental restorations. That is, when a cavity needs to be filled it is essential that dentists be conservative with their drilling and leave the tooth as intact as possible. Thus, the best holistic dentists will avoid crowns—which can remove up to two-thirds of the tooth—until it is absolutely necessary. For example, when a cavity or hole in the tooth needs treatment, a regular (non-toxic) filling should be placed. If that is not sufficient, then an inlay should be considered. However, if decay is significant and the cavity is too big, then a larger onlay is often required. Finally, if these restorations are not enough, then a crown should be placed—but only as a last resort. Therefore, always consider getting a second opinion if your dentist doesn’t offer fillings, inlays or onlays, but immediately recommends a crown, which is both more costly and more damaging to your tooth.

It should also be noted that a further differentiation between conventional and holistic dentists can be made through how readily they prescribe root canals. In fact, it is imperative that patients try to get a second opinion (from a holistically oriented dentist or doctor) if they are told they need a root canal. In too many cases, inflamed teeth are irreparably damaged from a root canal procedure, when they could have been easily ameliorated through holistic treatment (homeopathy, herbs, clearing toxic dental metals in or around the tooth, etc.). Particularly egregious is the practice of prophylactically performing a root canal procedure before placing a crown, based on the flawed reasoning of preventing future infection in the tooth. In actuality this simply destroys a vital tooth and virtually ensures some level of chronic bacterial outflow from this iatrogenically induced (dentist-induced) “dental focal infection.”

 


REFERENCES

1. Price, W. Nutrition and Physical Degeneration. Los Angeles: The American Academy of Applied Nutrition, 1939, pp. 134, 198, 251.

2. Palmer, B. The influence of breastfeeding on the development of the oral cavity: A commentary. PPNF Journal, Winter 1999, Volume 23, #4, p. 5.

3. Pottenger, F. The relative influence of the activity of artificial and breast feeding on facial development. PPNF Journal, Winter 1999, Volume 23, #4, pp. 6-8.

4. Labbok MH and others. Does Breast-feeding Protect Against Malocclusion? An Analysis of the 1981 Child Health Supplement to the National Health Interview Survey. American Journal of Preventive Medicine 1987;3(4): 227-232.

5. Adamiak E. Occlusion anomalies in preschool children in rural areas in relation to certain individual features. Czas Stomat 1981;34:551-5.

6. Personal communication, Sally Fallon Morell.

7. Personal communication Dr. Raymond Silkman.

8. Labbok MH and others. Does Breast-feeding Protect Against Malocclusion? An Analysis of the 1981 Child Health Supplement to the National Health Interview Survey. American Journal of Preventive Medicine 1987;3(4): 228.

9. Hoy, J. Clouds of death: Catastrophic effects of winddrift chemicals and locally sprayed pesticides on western Montana fauna. Wise Traditions, Fall 2002, Volume 3, #3, p. 21.

10. Ibid, p. 13.

11. Sumioka, T. Systemic effects of the peripheral disturbance of the trigeminal system: Influences of the occlusal destruction in dogs. J. Kyoto Pref. Univ. Med., Volume 10, #98, pp. 1077-1085.

12. Silkman, R. Is it mental or is it dental?: Cranial and dental impacts on total health. Wise Traditions, Volume 7, #1, Winter 2005/Spring 2006, p. 19.

13. Ibid

14. Fonder, A. The Dental Physician. Rock Falls, IL: Medical-Dental Arts, 1985, pp. 339-350.

15. Ibid.

16. Ibid.

17. Witzig, J. and Spahl, T. The Clinical Management of Basic Maxillofacial Orthopedic Appliances: Volume 1 Mechanics. Littletown, MA: PSG Publishing Company, Inc., 1987, pp. 162-166.

18. Eirew, H. An orthodontic challenge. International Journal of Orthodontics, Volume 14, 1976, p. 24.

19. Ibid.

20. Ibid.

21. Witzig, J. and Spahl, T. The Clinical Management of Basic Maxillofacial Orthopedic Appliances: Volume 1 Mechanics. Littletown, MA: PSG Publishing Company, Inc., 1987, pp. 162-166.

22. Price, W. Nutrition and Physical Degeneration. Los Angeles: The American Academy of Applied Nutrition, 1945, p. 357.

23. Ibid.

24. Ibid.

25. Loudon, M. Vertical dimension-Primary molar buildup. The Functional Orthodontist, May/June 1987, pp. 38-39.

 

This article appeared in Wise Traditions in Food, Farming and the Healing Arts, the quarterly journal of the Weston A. Price Foundation, Fall 2009.

Dr. Louisa Williams practices in San Rafael, California, and is director of the Marin Naturopathic Medicine clinic. For more information about her work go to www.marinnaturopathicmedicine.com, or call (415) 460-1968. For information about her book, Radical Medicine, please go to www.radicalmedicine.com.

4 Responses to From Attention Deficit to Sleep Apnea

  1. Suvetar says:

    Adult Palatal Expansion Possible
    Currently, I am undergoing treatment for a Slow Palatal Expansion.I’m 39 years old. I have already posted on ” Is it Dental or Mental?” on that subject but figured to post an update here instead.
    I am kind of glad I did not get treatment when I was a child because during my childhood this kind of procedure was (in my country) either unknown or just not practiced. I’d be missing half of my teeth now.

    6 days ago the Damon Brace Archwire was put in my mouth (upper and lower) together with 2 rubber bands. This functional appliance does several things. My maloclusion will be corrected, my crossbite, my uneven jaw line due to my crossbite, of course the teeth will be straightened and on top of it all my orthodontist is aiming for an at least 10 mm expansion total which should open up my nasal passages. I also have 2 bite plates on the back maulers to prevent knocking off the front lower brackets with my upper “Buckteeth”.

    Day 1-3 was rough, getting used to all this stuff in my mouth, not being able to chew and dealing with pain.
    By day 4 all the pain seemed to go away and my teeth are starting to shift, not noticable to the eye yet but I can push saliva through gaps I couldn’t before.

    I am following the WAPF dietary recommendations with Cod Liver Oil, High Vitamin Butter Oil, Raw Milk and Bone Broth and so on…

    So far, I’m happy with what is happening in my mouth and face, I feel pressure in my entire face, especially around the eye sockets and center of face, nasal bones.

    I’m hoping that more people will see that they don’t have to be stuck with this because they’re adults…there is help!

    The orthodontist doing exactly this in Southern Idaho is Dr. Troy Williams in Twin Falls. He is also familiar with the work of Weston A. Price now, thanks to me lol.

  2. Suvetar says:

    Update on my Adult Palatal Expansion
    It has been 4 months and 2 weeks since I started my slow palatal expansion using brackets ( I chose Damon Brackets but any others would work, too) and specific archwires that slowly widen my dental arch.

    6 months prior to starting this I put myself on a WAPF diet, because it was said to promote bone remodeling. I also don’t consume any grains, nuts or seeds of any kind due to their high phytic acid content.

    So it has been little over 4 months and the distance between my first premolars from left to right has increased by 3.5mm !!! This is quite fast considering it’s a slow expansion and the first 7 weeks of it wasn’t even an expansion, it was just a wire to line up my teeth before expanding the arch. The total time of actual expansion has only been about 2.5 months…that’s nuts!

    The inside of my teeth are itchy and I never knew each tooth had a pulse …lol. I am not in pain per se but I have pressure on all my bones, including the back of my head. I literally used to sleep on my face and can’t now because the pressure from my heads gravity in the pillow hurts my bones. It usually wakes me up, wish I could sleep on my back. They make special brace pillows, I might get me one of those.

    My crossbite is fixed, all teeth are lined up and the lower front are now lined up with the upper front. I still have a long road ahead of me, my occlusion isn’t perfect and won’t be for awhile since expansions keeps moving my teeth.
    I can now rest my lower jaw inside my upper and have my tongue pressed wide and flat against my upper palate.

    Also, being on the WAPF diet eliminated the risk of canker sores or ulcers within the mouth created by brackets. I have not had a single one! :-)

    • Melissa says:

      Thank you so much for writing about your experience! I was just reading this wondering if I was too old for palatial expansion. I’m sure you won’t even know I commented here, but I’d love to hear how you are doing now. So good to read about you experience!

  3. RBW says:

    help with severe grinding, clenching and teeth issues.
    I currently have SEVERE issues with grinding my teeth at night leading to intense jaw pain, headaches, insomnia, and extreme tension in my face, head, neck, and back. I have been on a WAPF diet in the hopes of improving my health, but my teeth are still somewhat crowded and I continue to have jaw issues. However, I am not in any position financially to pay for dental work of any kind…is there anything that somewhat could suggest to help with the grinding and v shaped jaw?

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