One of the most complex and perplexing problems in dentistry today is infection control. The oral cavity is a sea of microorganisms normally living in balance with the entire human body. Under certain conditions pathogenic or “disease causing” microorganisms can become the dominant life forms, thus creating what we call infection. These pathogenic microorganisms live together in what is called a biofilm. This biofilm supports a mixed type of infection made up of bacteria, viruses, fungi and even parasites. The difficulty is that each of these “disease causing” types needs a different drug to eliminate its dominance. What if we had an agent that could treat and eliminate the infection and, in addition, support the surrounding healthy tissue without toxic side effects? We do now with oxygen/ozone therapy for dentistry.
How Does Oxygen/Ozone Therapy Work?
Oxygen/ozone, when introduced into the living system, creates what is called a “transient oxidative burst”. The infective microorganisms have no natural defense against this reaction, and as a result, are overstressed and die. Thus, oxygen/ozone disinfects the area treated, both safely and effectively. This “oxidative burst” also induces a multitude of natural biochemical and physiological reactions. These reactions include better blood flow, enhanced immune response and rapid healing response.
How Can Oxygen/Ozone Help in My Dental Care?
Staying within the accepted standard of care, with proper application, oxygen/ozone can enhance the outcome in all aspects of dentistry. For example, periodontal disease is a chronic gum and bone infection. By utilizing the different application forms of oxygen/ozone such as ozonated water, ozonated oils, and placing oxygen/ozone directly into the infected gum gum pockets, periodontal disease can be arrested without the use of pharmaceutical drugs and associated side effects. Another area of concern is infected root canals. Oxygen/ozone therapy sterilizes all aspects of the tooth, even into the smallest canals and tubules. This allows for a truly biologic root canal and thus retention of your natural teeth. Tooth decay or caries, which is really a “tooth infection,” can be arrested almost immediately upon proper exposure to oxygen/ozone therapy. This procedure is especially useful when treating children, as minimal to no drilling of the tooth is necessary.
Is There Any Science to Support Oxygen/Ozone Therapy?
The scientific literature is vast in support of the effectiveness and safety of oxygen/ozone therapy. Historically, it was a Swiss dentist, E.A. Fisch in the early 1900’s who introduced the concept of oxygen/ozone in dentistry, followed by Dr. E. Payr who introduced this treatment into the medical community. Scientifically we now understand how and why oxygen/ozone therapies work so well, This has lead to many treatment advances in the last number of years, especially in dentistry. Recently, the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology reviewed and accepted Oxygen/Ozone in Dentistry as scientifically valid.
Can I Be Allergic to Oxygen/Ozone?
No, it is impossible to be allergic to oxygen/ozone. Ozone is just an energized form of oxygen. Ozone is naturally formed by the sun and lightning in storms. Without the ozone layer high in the atmosphere, life could not exist on our planet. Ozone actually filters out the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays and, in addition, makes for that beautiful blue color in the sky.
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