Poppycock Dentistry Than Panacea Holistic
Websites of many Australian dentists proudly state that holistic dentistry is a philosophy that encourages health and wellness, rather than treating disease. It considers the whole person, not just the teeth. It sounds very exciting. This practice is certainly different and more exciting than the mainstream dentistry. However, it doesn’t necessarily mean better qq online.
Many holistic dental practices embrace and encourage alternative treatments. You can find Australian dentists who practice or endorse homeopathy, Bach flower essences and naturopathy. The Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency has all registered dentists. This means that the public assumes they are trustworthy and their treatments, even if unusual, must be effective. We must also respect the ancient wisdom that influenced many of these treatments over the centuries. Yes, and no.
Not Quite Right Holistic
Modern medical treatments have been influence by many ancient remedies. Hippocrates recognized that powdered willow bark, which contained aspirin, relieved headaches. South Americans used quinine-rich cinchona bark to treat malaria. Ephedrine, a common stimulant and decongestant in traditional Chinese medicine, was also use to treat malaria. Both of these drugs are now highly effective.
It doesn’t mean that you can do something for hundreds of years. Misguided medicos have bled patients from the early Greeks and Mesopotamians to the late 19th Century, often to their death, trying to cure a variety of ailments. Traditional health systems still hold bloodletting as a fundamental belief.
Traditional Chinese medicine uses bear bile, shark fins, tiger penises and rhino horns. None of these medicines, despite the cruel methods they are use, has shown to have any health benefits. Rhino horns weigh more than gold, but are also more expensive. Because they largely made of protein keratin, buyers could have save a lot by simply chewing their toenails.
Noel Campbell, a former Victorian dentist who was self-describe professor, was practicing (very) alternative dentistry when she was charge with administering oxygen to the rectum of a patient to alleviate her facial pain. It didn’t work, not surprising. Campbell avoid being discipline by allowing his dental registration lapse, but he continues to offer unproven alternatives therapies to cancer patients through his website. He’s not the only one.
The cases of Jessica Ainscough, Wellness Warrior, and Belle Gibson, Whole Pantry’s Belle Gibson are two examples of how safe and effective recommendations for health-care should be based on more that a beautiful smile and social media presence.
Evidence Is Important Holistic
Aren’t there other therapies that are safe and effective? How can we tell the difference between them? We have many ways to determine if treatments for health are effective. Over the last few decades, evidence-based healthcare has become almost universally accepted as the standard for professional practice in health.
Evidence-based dentistry is open to patients preferences and needs, but insists on high-quality scientific evidence. Regular systematic reviews of publish research are require. Alternative therapies are currently support by very little evidence and have poor research methods. Even if a positive effect found, it often less than the placebo treatment and much lower than mainstream healthcare.
Because they haven’t proven effective, most natural medicines have not been add to the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods. Alternative therapies that safe and effective have been add to the mainstream health-care arsenal. Is it really important that patients get the treatment they need and feel better? It does matter.
While holistic practices can provide a wonderful environment for patients, trust and professionalism are essential to a good patient-dentist relationship. If a dentist recommends or endorses treatment options that are based on centuries-old eye of the newt and toe of the frog, without verifying if any positive effect is real, it is not in the patient’s best interest. Patients may not only have lost significant amounts of money, but they could also have been denied legitimate treatments that would have offered much greater benefits.
Hippocrates was writing this more than 2,000 years ago. In fact, there are two things: science and opinion. The former is the source of knowledge, while the latter is the source of ignorance. The public expects health professionals to practice professionally, ethically, and competently. Do you prefer a dentist that provides advice and treatment based on the latest research? Or a dentist who relies on dubious and unsupported mysticisms?
1948’s preamble to the World Health Organisation constitution defined health as a complete condition of physical, mental, and social well-being and not just the absence of illness or infirmity. This definition is still valid today and fits well with holistic dentistry. Holistic dentistry is not new. Holistic dentistry should be practiced by all dentists. They should also be practicing evidence-based dentistry.