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 Integrative Dentistry: Infection 
 
As with any part of the body, if the mouth is invaded by a particular type of bacteria, virus, or fungus, the toxins generated by the microorganism may cause an infection. The mouth is inhabited by many microorganisms. However, if an environment is produced in which a certain type of microorganism will overwhelmingly grow and multiply, then an infection may result.

With proper hygiene and a healthy immune system, the microorganisms present in the mouth will be harmless. If the immune system is not healthy, the ability to resist illness is compromised. Sometimes, drugs and disease reduce a person's immunity, and sometimes the microorganism itself may be particularly virulent or toxic.

Infection related to the gums, the teeth, or any other part of the mouth is accompanied by redness, swelling, and pain. When an abscess is present, there is a localized collection of pus. (See Abscess in Part Two.) If the infection spreads to surrounding tissues, it is called cellulitis. Bacteria can sometimes be found in normally sterile blood (bacteremia), or the infection can become systemic, disseminating organisms throughout the blood stream (septicemia).

Conventional Treatment
A dentist first determines the cause of the infection and then administers appropriate treatment, which may involve pulling an infected tooth, draining a gum abscess and cleaning the gums thoroughly, or performing root canal treatment. Antibiotics are given for bacterial infection, and drugs are prescribed for pain. Hospitalization may be required for severe infections that have spread.

Nutritional Supplements


Supplement Directions for Use Comments

Coenzyme Q-10 Take 60 mg daily. By improving circulation, it improves transport of oxygen to gum tissues, which is important in the healing process.

Garlic Take two 250-mg tablets 3 times daily. Natural antibiotic; protects against infection.

Selenium Take 100 mg daily. As an antioxidant, it helps protect the body from infections.

Vitamin C Take 1500 mg daily. Speeds up healing and is an antioxidant.

Vitamin E Take 400 IU daily. An antioxidant that aids oxygen uptake by cells and enhances antibody production.

Homeopathic Treatment

Dissolve the tablets under your tongue. Do not eat or drink for fifteen minutes prior to or after taking medication.


Preparation Directions for Use Comments

Belladonna 30x Take 1 tablet hourly as needed. Indicated for relief of fever and pain.

Hepar sulphuris 6x Take 1 tablet 3 times a day. To speed healing when infection is accompanied by pus.

Mercurius cyanatus 3x Take 1 tablet 3 times a day. Helps relieve pain and swelling of salavary glands.

Herbal Treatment


Herb Directions for Use Comments

Hops Prepare as tea. Drink 2-3 cups daily, or take tablets as directed on package. Helps improve circulation; good for stress and pain.

Licorice root Prepare as tea. Drink 2-3 cups daily. High in vitamin b complex. Beneficial for stress control; helps reduce inflammation; promotes healthy immune system.

Sarsaparilla Prepare as tea. Drink 2-3 cups daily, or take tablets as directed on package. Reduces fever.

Recommendations

  • Yogurt or acidophilus should be taken daily to help detoxify the system and balance the microorganisms in the body.
  • Drink plenty of fluids, especially water and grape juice. Grape juice is known for its blood-purifying properties.
  • A properly functioning immune system is the best defense against infections. Good nutrition, fresh air, exercise, and management of stress contribute to a healthy immune system.
  • It is important for expectant mothers to prevent infection, especially during the first three and last three months of pregnancy. Serious birth defects and damage to developing teeth may result from infections during this time.


From The Complete Book of Dental Remedies by Flora Parsa Stay, DDS, ©1996. Published by Avery Publishing, New York. For personal use only; neither the digital nor printed copy may be copied or sold. Reproduced by permission.

(Excerpted from The Complete Book of Dental Remedies)
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 About The Author
Flora Stay DDSFlora Stay, DDS holds a doctor of dental surgery degree from University of California, San Francisco. She is the founder of ...more
 
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