Dear Dr. Ellie,
Do you know of a dentist in or near Colorado Springs, CO who will encourage a patient’s efforts toward healing caries before resorting to drilling and filling them? I do think I am using the system correctly: Twice daily (once after breakfast or lunch; and once right before bed) I rinse with unflavored Closys, then floss (at bedtime only), and brush with Crest Regular Paste. Then I rinse my brush in warm water, dip it in Cool Mint Listerine, and rinse it again in warm water and store it away from the toilet area in my bathroom. Next I rinse my mouth with the Cool Mint Listerine, followed by the alcohol free ACT Anticavity rinse (mint). I try to keep the ACT in my mouth as long as is comfortably possible before spitting out and I am careful not to eat or drink for at least 30 minutes afterward. I have been eating two grams of xylitol, three times daily, after meals or snacks; but will begin using Zellies mints too, to increase my exposures to xylitol. I’m placing my order tonight! Admittedly, I do miss brushing in the middle of the day very occasionally, or forget to eat my xylitol every once in awhile (though I eat more to make up for it later in the day). Such is life amid the chaos of small children.
Also, from the article I see that I am at risk for being serially reinfected by my husband’s bacteria. He refuses to eat any xylitol and will only brush and rinse at bedtime, despite having obvious tooth decay and receding/infected gums. Despite these risk factors, I wonder if new x-rays would show improvement in my teeth over the last six months that my dentist could not see by simply looking at them.Thank you again, both for your wonderful advice and knowledge, and for your willingness to share it with people. JB
Everything you are doing sounds perfect just make sure you do not rinse with water in between your rinsing go straight from one rinse to the next.
I would suggest you floss FIRST BEFORE YOU start the rinse routine so as not to interrupt this process. Also, I would suggest you disinfect the family toothbrushes (including your husband’s toothbrush) at least once a day!
Think about adding xylitol into family baking. Xylitol is delicious and good for making things like apple crisp and cookies. Maybe like this, your husband will get to like xylitol (healthy sugar) and at the same time the xylitol baked into food will eradicate infective bacteria.
Used in baking he will not get the remineralizing and repair benefits of xylitol, because for that, you need to eat it AFTER meals. However, the xylitol baked or added to desserts and COOKIES will help prevent spread of infection to your family!!!
Karen Edwards has a book called Sweeten Your Life the Xylitol Way available on Amazon ……may be an idea!
I have noticed many men like Zellies mints and gum. If you leave some mints lying around, he may taste them. Does he eat mints or candy at all?
I respect how hard you are trying. You will be successful and turn your oral health around.
The only way to see remineralization is to compare cavities from X rays taken before and then take them again now.
You say that you have no symptoms from your cavities. This would make me advise you (if you were my patient) to follow this system a little while longer to give these cavities the most chance of healing so it will show on on X ray. Before any damage happens, you will notice sensitivity to hot and cold, sweet and foods.I believe you have time to wait and keep searching for the right dentist to treat you.
I wish we had a list of sympathetic dentists. Perhaps we should encourage all our readers to write to Angie’s List – and tell the world about good dentists they know! It is time that every dentist knew about REMINERALIZATION. It is time that dentists considered remineralization and if it is possible for remineralization to repair the damage they have detected rather than have them put in a filling. (The awful problem is they make no money for this suggestion but their income is from placing a filling)
I am not trying to demean your health professionals but their statements are false and inaccurate: “Once the cavities are there, they never just go away on their own.” “cavities don’t ever just heal up”. NOT TRUE. I think I should send them a copy of Kiss Your Dentist Goodbye!!
Good luck and ask around to your friends, other parents or church people for a suggestion for a dentist. If someone says they have a good dentist ask them why they think this.
If they point at crowns and bridgework stay away!!
If they say he is so nice and talks with them about RISK FACTORS or something called CAMBRA ( caries management by risk assessment) then you are on to something good!!!
Have a great weekend,
26 Corporate Woods
Rochester, NY 14623