The AAOSH Challenge

AAOSH-LogoThe First Annual Oral Health Challenge was held at a recent meeting of the American Academy for Oral Systemic Health (AAOSH). The competition was a test of mouth health for dentists, hygienists, physicians and other health professionals at the meeting. The “challenge” measured periodontal pathogens and looked for signs of plaque in arteries and inflammation in the blood. The health professionals taking this challenge place a high value on oral health, because of its impact on general health.

For over 30 years I’ve been a tireless messenger suggesting dentists must be kind to patients and to their mouths! I don’t think we should “kill bacteria” or “destroy biofilm” but instead we should see the bigger picture and work to promote a healthy oral ecosystem. As the mouth impacts our body, so the body impacts our mouth health. For ultimate oral health we must correct issues in the gut – working with patients to improve diet and nutrition, to ultimately strengthen the immune system.

I also believe we need to stop damaging bacteria in the mouth – and work to develop a healthy flora. I use xylitol to protect teeth from acidity with a mint or piece of gum at the end of every meal, drink or snack. I believe it’s essential to seed and nurture good bacteria as harmful ones are weeded away. Xylitol feeds healthy bacteria, and makes plaque slippery – so plaque is easily washed away by rinsing.

Twice-daily I treat my teeth to a rinse routine using traditional, over-the-counter products that allow me to maintain ultimate oral health. I’ve witnessed hundreds of patient success stories with this system – many recorded in my book, Kiss Your Dentist Goodbye.  The method is simple: mouth rinses in a sequence akin to a skin care regimen that cleanses, pH balances, and protects by using one product directly after another.

A gentle, balanced approach improves mouth health and maintains improvements, raising oral health to a new level  of “sustainable” or “ultimate” oral health. I’d recommend my whole-body, pro-active, and practical approach to anyone. I believe xylitol and the Complete Mouth Care System are effective and can help anyone win their own oral health challenge!

Categories: Complete Mouth Care System


  • Joyce says:

    Most dentists have a long way to go in dealing with periodontal disease. I must have seen 4 dentists including a very good periodontist. I don’t think they even expected to cure the problem, but only tried to control it.
    Thank goodness I found your program Dr. Ellie

  • Todd says:

    Hi Ellie, so I take it you had the best mouth out of everyone? and you obtain this from using the complete mouth system? please respond thanks Todd


    • Hi Todd,
      I have used this particular system of home care for decades. I noticed that these products each had huge benefits – and as a dentist in a busy practice focused on prevention – it seemed logical to introduce people with bad teeth to the products used by people with good teeth. This went on for a decade – and I was astounded by the results I noticed. The problem is that these products are “old” “never advertised” “inexpensive” and each one is from a different company. How impossible was that to share?
      At one time I gave seminars in Upstate NY – where I charged $30 for a ticket. I described the science behind this system – and at the end of the seminar gave everyone a bag with what they needed for success. This was how I turned a number of people on to my system. The biggest problem has been a total lack of support from the profession – no money in it, most don’t consider home care important, and it’s too complicated to explain…..
      I use Zellie’s and this three-rinse system every morning and night – without fail. I don’t floss. I have only had one cleaning in 30 years. Yes, I believe it is a most useful way to achieve sustainable/ultimate oral health.

      • fjelly says:

        Hello Dr Ellie,
        I’ve read much of the advice on your website, but don’t recall reading your personal history, and particularly that you’ve had only one cleaning in 30 years. By your example, are you suggesting that people who follow your regimen can feel encouraged or empowered to skip professional cleaning? Or is the need for professional cleaning more a matter of judgement on the part of the dental examiner? Thank you.

        • The paradigm shift I suggest is that we value healthy probiotic bacteria in the mouth. We must start the mission – even before a baby is born, realizing bacteria transfer from parents to a baby’s mouth.

          A healthy mouth is dominated by healthy bacteria – this is the goal for oral health. Once this sustainable situation is achieved – we must nurture and protect these bacteria. This means we avoid “cleaning away” or upsetting the biofilm of a healthy mouth. Ask a pediatric dentist why he or she “cleans” the teeth of children who have no plaque or calculus?

          Teeth are not a row of pebbles – they are living and more resemble a coral reef. I’m suggesting dental treatments and many home care treatments are too aggressive, and often unnecessary (serving no purpose and possibly -like an antibiotic – causing disruption and harm).

          • fjelly says:

            Thank you, Dr. Ellie. Always learning! I understand that Streptococcus mutans is a bacteria that contributes to dental decay. What are the “healthy” bacteria of the oral cavity? Is xylitol selectively effective against only harmful bacteria like streptococcus mutans, but not against good bacteria?

            • In a healthy mouth there are almost a thousand different kinds of healthy bacteria, plus viruses and “healthy” fungi. Recently scientists began to understand more about these bacterial collections through the human microbiome project.

              Each of us develops an individual mixture – a “fingerprint” of bacteria – some inherited, some transferred from others, and this mixture is constantly modified by our habits, lifestyle, stress, dental products, diet etc.

              We will surely learn more about oral and gut bacteria, and the interactions between bacteria in different “body” places in the years ahead….likely seeing our errors – like the overprescription of antibiotics.

              I believe oral health is so important for general health because it helps the body develop a healthy gut. We must begin in the young mouths of children and help them avoid unnecessary dental treatments (dental fluoride gels and sealants etc) and damage that antibiotics cause these “bacterial gardens”. By protecting a diverse mixture of bacteria, we protect our health.
              Here is a link to some reading:

            • Xylitol appears to feed most mouth bacteria – and the interesting difference is to do with one “wild” strain of Strep mutans (the agressive strain of Strep mutans that is involved in tooth decay).
              Xylitol blocks the “workings” of this kind of bacteria.

              This strain is unique in that it creates strands of glycoprotein so that it can stick to the surface of teeth. Only when it is attached to a hard, non-shedding surface can this bacteria multiply. Without it’s sticky substance, this kind of Strep mutans becomes “slippery” and is easily washed away – by saliva or by a good mouth rinse routine.

              There is no killing of bacteria involved – only feeding as far as I know….

        • Look your hygienist directly in the eye and ask politely, “do I NEED (emphasis on need) a cleaning?”

    • Hi Todd, I don’t think I totally answered your question. I have a different approach to oral care from most of my dental peers. I learned this in the 1970s in a dental practice in Switzerland.
      I believe that we must brush to stimulate circulation in the gums. I do not floss.
      I use xylitol to loosen unwanted plaque and then I use rinses to wash this away.
      I use diet and good nutrition to support and develop a healthy digestion and I believe that this will support a healthy mouth flora – providing my oral care does not destroy the healthy bacteria.

      I believe in excellent tooth brushing, careful nurturing of general body health by nutrition, diet, exercise, sleep etc. I work on these things almost every day of my life. I guess you call it an oral health lifestyle!

      I do NOT consider “brush for two minutes” useful advice, for the following reasons:
      1) How clean/dirty is the toothbrush? What kind of toothbrush design? If the brush is infected or a poor design – you have no chance of a healthy, clean mouth.
      2) What kind of toothpaste? If it contains harsh chemicals or rough abrasives , or if it is toxic to good bacteria of the mouth – it can cause harm.
      3) Your brushing technique is important. I believe we brush to stimulate circulation in the gum micro-circulation. This is how we bring lymphatic liquids to clean up debris and nutrients in blood capillaries – to feed and heal the gums.

      My philosophy is only useful for those who want to empower themselves and achieve a higher level of sustainable oral health. For a disinterested patient – our current dental care system is the best we can offer – a way for someone else to help take care of another individual’s teeth!

  • I wish every patient demanded bacterial testing – to know if they are at risk from harmful gum disease bacteria. Without this test, diagnosis of gum /periodontal disease is not able to measure bacteria. The test gives a graph showing levels of pathogens. You are correct, many dentists worry even with an antibiotic ..they cannot “cure”….

    I’d suggest take the test, get on my system, then test again after 3-6 months. We can then discuss results 🙂 Here is a link to find a dentist who does this kind of testing (they may not yet believe in my system – but we can change that as they notice the positive results)

  • Carroll Jamison says:

    Dr. Ellie, do you brush more than twice a day. Do you recommend brushing the tongue?

    • I think we should view the mouth as an entity and not a bunch of parts: teeth, gums and tongue etc.. I focus on ways to balance the entire ecosystem, so the whole mouth is nourished and protected. This is the best way to make a mouth healthy – not by scratching and scraping individual areas.
      Think of your mouth as a garden or a coral reef in the ocean! The Complete Mouth Care System nurtures the whole environment – teeth, gums and tongue. Regular use will quickly promote a community of healthy probiotic oral bacteria to populate these areas and maintain the health of teeth, gums, tongue and breath.
      I do not think anyone should use the Complete Mouth Care System more than 3 times a day. Twice appears to be ideal – and always before bed at night.

  • Wendy Fjelstad says:

    Dr Ellie,
    My husband and I have been following your Complete Mouth Care System for about 2 years with good benefit. We also recently added a source of Vitamin K2 to our daily diet. Since making this dietary change we’ve both noticed a marked reduction in the amount of plaque that forms each day on our teeth. My husband eats a small serving of natto every day and I take Vit K2 (MK7) as a supplement. What do you think about the role of Vit K2 for oral health?

    • Vitamins of many kinds affect oral health. I have recommended pineapple for extraction healing for the vitamins and bromelain that it contains. Also I believe, as mouth health affects general health, so body health affects our mouths. This is a two-way street – or perhaps more than this – as it seems to be an amazing and integrated system.Things we eat – like spinach – provide minerals that (in a healthy gut and when combined with correct fats) are absorbed into the body, travel in the blood and end up in body fluids that filter into saliva. The minerals from the foods we eat not only “feed” our teeth from the inside, but mineralize them via saliva. In addition these minerals and nutrients also “feed” healthy mouth bacteria – allowing them to turn plant nutrients like nitrates (from spinach – for example) into Nitric Oxide – which helps our circulation and breathing! Wow – isn’t this fantastic! LINK

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