The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast Episode #210 - Dr. Dominik Nischwitz
Dr. Dominik Nischwitz (AKA Dr. Dome) is the worlds leading biological dentist and one of the first ceramic implant specialists. He is the Vice-president of the International Society for Metal Free Implantology, whose mission is to help as many people as possible to experience optimum oral health without the use of yester-year metal-based treatments.
Dr. Dome is an international speaker, and author of It's All In Your Mouth, with the goal of establishing biological dentistry as the new standard for health optimization.
Dr. Dome has exclusively used ceramic implants since 2013, placing more than 5000 to date, and is considered a pioneer in the field of biological and holistic dentistry. His other passions include functional medicine, holistic nutrition, and competitive sports. Dr Dome trains traditional dentists in proper biological dentistry practices, and believes that optimal health starts in the mouth.
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The "Modern" Mouth
the structural loss in the jaw
Wisdom Teeth Removal; and the complications
veneers and crowns
Guilt and trauma
oral Hygiene practices and oral health
flossing & Fluoride
best brushing techniques
eating a lot of fruit
is SIBO from the oral microbiome traveling down?
are we just one giant mouth?
the oral fixation in babies
can kissing our partners change our oral microbiome?
removing amalgam fillings safely
Melanie Avalon: Hi, friends. Welcome back to the show. I am so incredibly excited about the conversation that I am about to have. So, the backstory on today's conversation, I've been fascinated by the role of oral health for a long time. The only other show I've done on this show about it was with the company Bristle, where they actually test your oral microbiome. But I'd been wanting to do an episode, diving deep, deep, deep into the science of the mouth and health and oral health care, and how it relates to the rest of the body. And I just knew [chuckles] the way I am with this show is I often know that the perfect source is out there to talk about a topic. And I feel like it'll just come to me eventually. So, I had my dear friend Kris Gethin on this show. I'll put a link to it in the show notes. Definitely check out the interview that I did with him. He's an amazing bodybuilder and we talked about so many things, diet, fitness, health. But he introduced me to Dr. Dom, who is in Germany right now, well, always, [laughs] but right now as well on the show. And he is a biological dentist and he wrote a book called It's All in Your Mouth: Biological Dentistry and the Surprising Impact of Oral Health on Whole Body Wellness.
So, I saw the topic, saw Dr. Dom's work, obviously was super excited and was an immediate yes. And then I read the book. And friends, I posted this in my story just now, but it was one of the most mind-blowing things I have ever read. I learned so much. I actually, honestly, I was telling my cohost of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast this, I think I learned more about the microbiome in general, including the gut microbiome in this book, than I have in possibly any other book. So, the book dives deep into so many topics that we'll talk about all the potential issues and things that you might experience in your mouth, how to best address it, be that oral hygiene or diet, so many know, veneers, implants, crowns, NICO. I just have so many questions. But Dr. Dom, thank you so much for being here.
Dr. Dom: Thank you, Melanie, for having me. It's my pleasure.
Melanie Avalon: So, to start things off, you do talk about this in your book, but can you introduce yourself to listeners a little bit? What is your personal story? What made you first interested in oral health and especially the transition to the biological approach that you take today?
Dr. Dom: So, I studied dentistry, conventional dentistry in the University of Tubingen, but actually, I never wanted to really become a dentist. You know my dad is a dentist, and as a kid growing up, the only thing I wanted to do was actually become a skateboard professional. So, in the 90s the lifestyle was always drinking a lot of alcohol, party a lot, don't sleep too much and eat fast food, just enjoy life. So, I actually had health issues pretty soon, pretty early in my life. Roundabout when I started to study dentistry early 20s, I crashed with depression and lots of overall chronicle health issues that no one could seem to help me with back then. And as this is more than 20 years ago, there was no Dr. Google, there was no YouTube, really. There was no functional medicine, really nobody could help me. I just wanted to become normal again because I knew, "Okay, something switched in my brain and doesn't feel good." But everybody kept on telling me that there's no solution for this.
So I went deep into nutrition, into the science of supplements and biochemistry, because that's what something you study in dentistry, actually. So, while studying dentistry, I basically already took care of optimizing my health, not knowing the term health optimization back then, just to get me back to normal. And this was more my passion, just get me back to normal while studying dentistry. And I like the dentistry part because it's mainly a craft that is very, how you have to have, let's say, quick fingers, and have to be precise, and have to have an aesthetic point of view, be a little bit of an artist. So that was easy to me but there was something missing in dentistry for the whole university. I didn't realize what it was. It was just something was missing.
It felt like I can do more as a dentist. But as soon as I graduated from dentistry and finally had myself actually back to normal health again took me a couple of years, but I was already back to normal, and I wanted to become an oral surgeon, so I wanted to place implants and restore the complete bite. So, surgery was appealing to me. And the dentist that I did the residency with, he was a very good surgeon, but an old school dentist at the same time. So, he would place nasty silver amalgam fillings. And I was always interested in aesthetics, and I told him, "Sorry, but I can't do this. I bring in the composites, the ceramics, but I will never do an amalgam filling." So, I had to know why I was saying it, because in university, I only learned about amalgam being a great material that lasts forever and actually is subsidized by the insurance. But I didn't know why it was somewhat toxic. I just knew from my father that he wouldn't do it for the last 20 years already, because it being toxic, I just found super ugly.
So, I dove deep into the science of functional medicine, or this is actually when functional medicine universe opened up for me, because I looked into heavy metals, I looked into detoxification, I found great mentors, and the whole universe opened up to me. And I finally realized whatever I did the five years before to heal myself and learn about nutrition and supplements and biochemistry was actually the piece I was missing in university, which is actually combining the high-tech skills with functional medicine, and health optimization. And this is the concept I'm teaching nowadays, 15 years later when I became the doctor, I had needed 20 years ago. So, this is kind of a quick summary of my hero journey. [laughs] Melanie Avalon: Oh, I love it so much. So many directions we can go, because I know people are definitely going to have questions about those amalgams, I was actually at a wedding this past weekend, and I was with my little niece and nephew, and I just remember she opened her mouth and I saw all this metal in her mouth, and I got so sad. I was thinking maybe for Christmas I could offer to get her a new teeth situation. I was like, "She probably won't think that's the best present ever as like a little kid." But so many directions we can go. Here's a huge question to start. Okay, so the evolution of us as people and hunter-gatherers, how much has our mouths changed the environment of our mouths? Is it normal? So, like, hunter-gatherers, did they get cavities? Did they have a lot of oral health issues? Is that completely a modern thing? I'm just really curious about this.
Dr. Dom: Yeah. You're actually right. All the classic oral diseases like tooth decay, gingivitis, and periodontitis are a modern Western world issue. So, hunters and gatherers actually did not really have tooth decay. They had a lot of plaque accumulation and calculus, but they had no sign of inflammation from the studies I know when they ate their Paleolithic diets and just basically what they could find in whole foods and also had enough space for not just 32 teeth, but even 36 teeth. So, we had more teeth, wider jaw, stronger jaw, tougher bones, tougher teeth. So, we kind of were a little bit stronger and tougher, and we got convenient, and we now get even soft teeth. So, it really is an epigenetic issue that is mainly prominent in the Western world. There's a good dentist, actually. He's not alive anymore, but he's a legend. His name is Weston Price. He was, in my opinion, one of the first biologic dentists. I'm quite sure you have heard of him. So, there's still the Weston Price Foundation. Price-Pottenger, so he traveled the world because he was curious, because when he lived, right 1800 to 1900, this is when processed food started to happen, and he realized that his patients got sicker, sicker and had postural issues, and he was interested in nutrition and physical degeneration. So, he traveled the world to see the Aborigines, to see like remote countries, even in Switzerland, I think he went to see the Inuit. He went to see Africa, just to see and realize how people change with changing their diet to more processed foods. And the pictures he has in his book, it's amazing.
Like the ones that ate their regular, healthy, ancient diet had perfect set of 32 teeth. No signs of scoliosis or postural issues. very aesthetic beautiful teeth. They breathe through their noses and no sign of any inflammation whereas the kids that already had contact with processed foods, mainly flour, sugar, refined oils, all the things that we eat nowadays every day, they look like little monsters. Crowded teeth, spacing issues, gingivitis, periodontitis, lots of black, tooth decay and even breathing through their mouths as an adaption. So basically how 80% of all the teenagers in our Western world look still these days. And this is to be changed.
Melanie Avalon: Two questions there. So, one, it's a little bit nuanced, but so you mentioned two things going on there with the change in our mouths, the actual physical space. So, people today get out their wisdom teeth often because we don't have the space anymore for the teeth. And then also the strength and the conditions of the actual teeth themselves. Is the structural loss aspect a negative in and of itself. So, what I mean by that is because it seems like now, you're just born, people are just born without that extra space. So, if you're born now and you get your wisdom teeth out, but you're, like, on a great diet, are we still losing out because we don't have that extra space in our mouth?
Dr. Dom: Obviously, it's a generational issue now that the more we degenerate away from how we looked and this is, let's say two generations, three generations of your parents already ate the wrong diet and lifestyle and grew a little bit more narrow. So, you start with these genes. But, you know, epigenetics are still the bigger role. So, if you would make everything perfect, like, naturally, when it comes to how we grow and how we support the body with the right nutrition, it should start actually before even getting pregnant, preparing the mom and then in the womb having no deficiencies. And then it starts with breastfeeding. And breastfeeding for about 18 months, actually leads to a good jaw bone development and to a widening of the upper jaw and the palate and also develops nose breathing. So that's the start.
Melanie Avalon: Do you know James Nestor?
Dr. Dom: Not personally, but I've heard of him.
Melanie Avalon: I'll put a link in the show notes. He talks all about the role of breathing and how it relates to the structure of the mouth. It's fascinating stuff. Okay, another wisdom teeth question. So, I got my wisdom teeth removed in 2012 and ever since then I've had pain. I got TMJD or what people often call TMJ. And I've just had irritation there ever since. And I went through a period where I was convinced that I had a hidden infection. Or my current dentist I actually go to because he was the only dentist, I could find in Georgia that had a cone bean machine because I wanted to get a full 3D scan of my whole head and look for hidden infections, I'm not sure if there was a specific question there. I guess the question is how often do people get dental procedures like wisdom teeth removal, root canals, things like that, and then have lasting issues? And what would those issues be like? Can you create trauma? Do you cement in infections when you do work? What can be happening with hidden chronic issues with your mouth?
Dr. Dom: Yeah. So, you have to see the mouth and the teeth are an extension of your brain. There are tiny little organs and whatever you do in there or on these teeth or in these teeth is directly in your body, your wisdom tooth example 80% at least of all the Western kids, teenagers get their wisdom teeth removed because they just have no space anymore so that's degeneration. And the issue here is most of the time they're not prepared. You remember 2012, probably the doctor told you about the medication you should be taking, how the procedure works, but he didn't prepare you with the right lifestyle. He didn't check for nutritional deficiencies like vitamin D3 deficiency or any protein deficiencies and just did the surgery. So, what happens is it's a shock for the system and your body is just not able to heal the wound. And what happens there in, I would say, 90 plus percent of all cases is that your body is not able to build bone there and it ends up being a chronic inflammation in the jawbone. Also referred in layman's terms, often called cavitations.
The medical term for this is FDOJ or NICO. FDOJ stands for fatty degenerative osteonecrotic jawbone, which basically means like, nasty bone in their, chronic silent inflammation of your jawbone that no one knows of, not even your dentist. Even though he has a cone beam, it doesn't really mean that he knows it because this is nothing. Cavitations are nothing you would learn in university. It's not in dental school yet and I think it will still take a while. Even though it's like an old hat, it's still not common. And most dentists will actually say that's quackery and that's the problem. You still have a cone beam and if you don't know what it is you have to look for, your dentist won't even diagnose it. So that's a pity because I'm always talking about the three health killers that might be lurking in your mouth that you're not even aware of. And therefore, I ask three simple questions to everyone. So, your first question is already answered.
You had your wisdom teeth out, so there's a big chance that you have cavitations. Second question is always have you have metals in your mouth or had metals in your mouth? If it's a yes, stand up. And the third question is, like you mentioned, root canals. Have you had or have a root canal? And if that's a yes, we now know that you have ongoing chronic stress in form of toxins, chronic inflammations, cytokines that are disrupting your nervous system and immune system 24/7 and you probably don't even know of because they're not hurting. It's chronic and it's silent. And that's killer number one, actually.
Melanie Avalon: Wow. Okay, [chuckles] so the cavitation, the NICO, you experienced that as well, right? I believe you mentioned that in your book.
Dr. Dom: So, I had same issues, actually, as you. So, I was grinding like crazy at night or even clenching massive tension in my jaw muscles and my head and neck. And by chance, we found that I had cavitations in my jawbone because back then I knew about the topic, but it wasn't as-- I don't know if you can say that it wasn't as present to me. It was more like, "Yeah, some people have that." I didn't realize how big of an issue this was, so we did a comb beam. For me, I had huge cavitations. And when we finally did the surgery for the cavitations, kind of like 80% of all my chronic health issues just disappeared within the next six weeks. So therefore, I was maybe patient zero. But if you learn what happens or how your body heals after something like this, I couldn't hold this information back from patients, so I had to implement it into our teachings and into how we treat patients.
For us, we always remove all metals, all root canals, and all cavitations. It's kind of like an all in one, all-inclusive concept. And, yes, clenching your teeth, grinding at night, and lots of chronic health issues. So, we are living in an epidemic of chronic disease, as you might know. It's not the pandemic, it's mostly the chronic disease. So whatever symptom you come up with could be neurological issues like Alzheimer's or Parkinson's, could be autoimmune issues like Hashimoto's, multiple sclerosis, gut issues like irritable bowel syndrome, SIBO, or let's say adrenal issues like adrenal fatigue, burnout, depression, anxiety, mental health issues, allergies, you name it, whatever you come up with. If you already have optimized everything, but you're still not superhuman and you still suffer from these symptoms, there's a huge chance that you might have something lurking in your mouth that is stressing your body 24/7, causing these issues as the root sauce[?].
Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Speaking of, it was interesting for me. I don't grind as much anymore, but I really was grinding really bad, and I had to get crowns all in the back. And she said she knew it was from grinding because it was only on my bottom teeth or my top. It was only one side, my bottom teeth, I guess. And she was saying that if it was related to anything else, it would have probably affected all the teeth in the back. I don't know if that's accurate. So, wait, cavitations. So, you remove the cavitations? That sounds like removing a negative or how do you get rid of it?
Dr. Dom: So basically, to get rid of it, you have to have a surgery which is very minimal invasive. So, what happens is it's a chronic health issue. So, your body, let's say, became lazy. It didn't have any solutions, so it just made the whole thing a little bit more silent. So that's why it's silent. You don't even feel it anymore most of the time at the spot. So, you have to go in there, which is you can do that very minimal invasively with a tiny little bit of piezo surgery, and then open up that jawbone and in there is no bone. There're dead bone particles and in these cavitations, great researchers have found a ton of stuff. Mold spores, especially in the US is extreme. So, all the people that have mold issues, you will never heal unless the spores are not fully out of your system. So, a lot of people have that in their mouth, in these jawbone cavitations, then parasites, viruses, fungi, loads of heavy metals in there from previous amalgam filling, even glyphosates and other environmental toxins are found in there.
It's kind of like I always describe it as a huge dumping area. And because it's chronic and silent, it's kind of like your body doesn't deal with it anymore, but it's in the middle of your nervous system. It's an extension of your brain. And whatever happens there is directly connected to a cranial nerve called trigeminus which then transports all the toxins and cytokines directly into your brain stem, into the ganglion, into the hypothalamus, pituitary. And also, what people often don't realize is with this trigeminal, there's always a part of the vagal nerve which is another cranial nerve, but just the main nerve that basically innervates all your inner organs, and it can become toxic. It's called a toxic vagal syndrome. You basically can't get in yin mode or relax and digest mode anymore. You're always in chronic fight and flight. And that's another sign when you clench all day long or grind or just be jittery or nervous in the morning. That's what I had. For example, I had skin issues, I had back pain, and I kind of felt like I had Parkinson's every morning. I was already like shaking if I drank three coffees already when I woke up. And it was all gone after surgery, which was insane for me personally, because I looked for it for five, six years and didn't find anything.
Melanie Avalon: This is so fascinating. So, if it doesn't show up on x-ray or cone beam, do you just have to find a biological dentist and then does he just diagnose based on symptoms and then do surgery assuming he's going to find.
Dr. Dom: No, no. The gold standard to diagnose is actually a cone beam. What I was saying before was most dentists don't know about the issue, so they don't know how to diagnose it on a cone beam because they don't even know what to diagnose it because they haven't even heard about cavitation, just have no idea about it. So, we use the cone beam and we have a separate machine, which it's called a CaviTAU, which is an ultrasound that we can also use on top to make it even more sure. And only then, if we have a solid diagnosis, we do it. But patients fly in from all over the world. Mostly say more people come from all over the world and from Germany, actually. And therefore, we plan everything remotely, not with a cone beam, but just with a simple panoramic two-dimensional x-ray, because I can already see that the wisdom teeth have been taken out. And then my assumption is, "Okay, 90% of all cases, this patient would have cavitations." So, we plan them and then when you come in for the health optimization week where we take care of everything, then we do the cone beam, then we do the CaviTAU, then we make the perfect diagnosis. But preliminary, we use a two-dimensional panoramic x-ray.
Melanie Avalon: Another just offshoot question that it made me think of because you were talking about the healing process from surgery. You talk a lot in your book about implants, for example, and how the recovery for that is really important. And what is the recovery as far as immediately putting in implants or not? What's the conventional way of doing implants and what do you think is important?
Dr. Dom: So, an implant is an artificial root. So, if you lost your root to a root canal or the tooth is just gone and you need to replace a missing tooth, generally you need an implant and 99.7% of all dentists still do titanium, which is a metal. And what we do is we use ceramic implants. And now it's finally medically accepted and even newly been classified as a biomaterial so zirconia ceramic implant, what we do is a biomaterial. A titanium metal implant is a foreign particle. The foreign particle always heals within a chronic inflammatory response. So foreign body reaction, cytokines, like TNF-alpha versus zirconia implant, only osseointegrates within your body if your body is anabolic and can build bone and tissue, that's simple. So, what we do specialty is we remove all root canals anyways, clean the socket, clean everything perfectly. And then, if possible, we place an immediate ceramic zirconia implant to stabilize the socket, kind of like as a tent pole so we don't lose any anatomy. Because if you put that implant right away, this is when your body wants to heal anyways, you keep bone height, so bone quantity and quality.
This is the most valuable thing because the usual way is to take out the tooth, let it heal for three months, then do a cone beam. So, in these three months, what happens is that the bone collapses and you lose, let's say, at least 30% of width and height. And sometimes it's so detrimental that you need ton of grafting and it takes you one or two years longer to get that tooth instead of just taking it out and placing it at the same time. And I would say in above 90% of all cases, probably even 95, we are able to do an immediate ceramic one. And this is, in my opinion, the future of dentistry. I'm doing it for more than 10 years now, but for most people is still or dentists is still, what you're doing ceramic implants, that's crazy. You're doing immediate implants, it's even more crazy. So, it's still not widely used, even though it's now finally medically accepted.
Melanie Avalon: And what about the materials for things like veneers and crowns?
Dr. Dom: Whatever you have to repair in your mouth. I would go with the most biocompatible biomaterial available. So, veneers are mostly done for vanity, aesthetic, maybe a functional reason also. But veneers is a highly skilled thing that is often mistakenly done wrong so veneers usually work additionally. So, you don't really shave down teeth. You might shave a little edge off to make it more straight or whatever, but it's usually very thin, full ceramic veneers or plates that you glue on top of your existing enamel and therefore you don't lose any strength of the teeth. Problem is, if you do veneers or Google veneers, or look at what social media presents and you fly out to all sorts of countries to do veneers, what you end up getting is not veneers, it's getting crown work. And what is mains is you shave down your precious enamel and to replace it with something minor. So, a veneer is something that is really skilled, ceramic. But anyways, everything you need to repair-- if you need repair done, you should always go with as biocompatible as possible. So that would be full ceramics, could be zirconia, could be lithium disilicate, but for an implant, it should be a full zirconia implant. For crowns, it could be both. And if it's a tiny filling that you need to replace, you can even go with composite, which is in layman's term, let's say it's a mixture out of plastic and ceramics.
Melanie Avalon: So, I think that happened to me with the veneers because I don't think they're actually quite [laughs] veneers because I had one that kept falling off, which was really traumatic because it's like listeners, friends, it's like having the nightmare where your teeth fall out, but then you realize it's real life. Like, I remember the first time it happened, it happened at night because I was eating and it came out and it was really stressful. And then I went to bed and then I woke up and I was like, "Oh, it's just a dream." And then I looked in the mirror and I was like, "It's not a dream, [laughs] not waking up." But beneath the veneer it was like a peg. There was not much tooth there, which was distressing to see.
Dr. Dom: It's probably a crown, not a veneer.
Melanie Avalon: Okay, fun times there actually related to all of that. It's empowering because it sounds like we have a lot of agency when it comes to our oral health and our teeth and all of that. I personally also have a lot of guilt. So, once I got veneers and crowns even, I just got so much guilt because I felt like maybe-- it's like maybe I didn't need to have crowns or get veneers. Maybe I could have done something differently. How do you handle the mental side of things of our teeth? And is it ever too late? And I mean, clearly, you're doing dental work all the time. Can we see it as empowering? What are your thoughts on mindset and particularly guilt when it comes to our teeth?
Dr. Dom: Yeah. So, you have to see teeth, like I said before, are an extension of your brain and whatever you had done traumatically in your body. Teeth seem to store a lot of trauma so you have to be able to deal with lots of different, let's say mental health issues at the same time or even guilt. I always make that very easy and ease into it and I don't even stress about it. So, if anyone has guilt feelings about it, we will just talk through everything because I'm mainly the surgeon and when you do that surgery, there's so much trauma coming up. Imagine you have a dead tooth. The dead tooth is there for a reason, so there's a lot of trauma with it. So, if I take it out, could happen that the patient just cries for no reason, same with cavitations, because it's kind of like an emotional healing process too. So it's always five levels of healing that we're doing. Even though I work on your physical body by removing that stuff as a surgeon, there's still always an electrical component which is more the acupuncture.
There's a mental side of things, there's also spiritual side of things and in my opinion, a good doctor has to have that all in check to be able to walk patients through. And then I don't associate any negativity with anything. So, they are coming to optimize their health, they are looking forward to this and if there's any negative thoughts and feelings, we will just deal with it and maybe change it to a better behavior. But it's also often stored in the teeth actually. So that's something that is hard to get rid if you still have, let's say, a dead tooth in your body because it maybe holds that emotion, if you understand what I mean.
Melanie Avalon: I do, and I really believe that. And that actually reminds me of something you write in your book that it's very specific, but I found it so fascinating. You were talking about a patient that had some sort of issue and when they had the numbing like the Novocaine or procaine.
Dr. Dom: The procaine.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah. It was like a big mood lift and I was thinking about how-- so [chuckles] my current dentist, he uses nitrous oxide, so it's like a party anyways. But my dentist before that did not use nitrous, and that's where I got the crowns done. So, it was just like numbing alone. And I remember from that numbing, I got sort of like a high feeling, like I felt really good. And I was always really perplexed by that. I was like, "Why is this making me feel like this?" And I was thinking, "Oh, maybe it does relate to this concept of if there's some sort of chronic issue going on and you do temporarily numb it, you're not feeling that temporarily."
Dr. Dom: Yes, that's perfectly correct. So, what happens if you have these chronic things? Your body gets used to it. That means you don't even feel it anymore. And there's probably a lot of, let's say, onion layers on top of it until you get to that feeling again. So, if you use procaine, for example, to do a neurotherapy, let's say on cavitation sites or on root canals, you temporarily reset the whole nervous system to that area. So, you basically press the button, reset and restore, software upload and download. And then you feel like if the stuff is gone for, let's say, eight to 24 hours, the thing is, some people realize in a second, "Oh, wow, I feel better. I'm not depressed anymore. I feel like some brain fog has lifted. Oh, I can move my arms straight away. So that is a big change." Some people don't feel anything at the beginning, but when the old comes back, they feel it.
There's a different thing. So, then they get depressed, for example. They're like, "Oh, no, I feel so depressed." And I'm like, That's good." That means we know that these things make you depressed and temporarily lifted with the neurotherapy, you felt how you should feel normally. And this is a good diagnostic tool that you can actually use. It's obviously also parasympathetically activating. The procaine in itself dissolves at the spot in two different particles that are anti-inflammatory and help with bleeding. So besides this, let's say reset of the system, it's also a healing mechanism so it's good to do that anyways. But you can see with this diagnosis how much is there. And there's even a lot of studies. There are studies showing you that the endotoxins the lipopolysaccharide of all the chronic infections and bacteria, anaerobes or whatever that lived, for example, in your root canal that they lead to a worse or a poor quality of life, mental health issues, even depression. And I think that should be informed consent because nobody tells you about this. They just tell you need a root canal but don't even know why.
Melanie Avalon: No, it's so true. One of my business partners just got a root canal. Now he's having all of these issues. And I was talking with my friend about it. It's interesting, my friend was saying, "That's why we need to have good oral hygiene." I was like, "Well, I'm actually reading a book right now." So what do the studies show on oral hygiene practices and how they relate to oral health? Does it correlate?
Dr. Dom: So, there're studies in the studies. So obviously the studies that most dentists read are the ones that are sponsored by any sort of company, and I'm not sure if they're the right ones. Let's see it from a different point of view. So oral hygiene obviously is important, but there's good data about our ancestors. They didn't brush their teeth. They only ate the right foods, which actually brushed their teeth, because eating hard stuff will clean the teeth. So, they didn't really have any sort of tooth decay or oral inflammation. And they redid this study-- or they did a study out of it, actually, in Germany, I think, two years ago, where they compared a control group that ate the standard Western diet with a paleolithic kind of eating way only for four weeks. And after four weeks, 100% reduction of inflammation in the group that was eating how we're supposed to eat versus the other ones. So, they hypothesized that nutrition and lifestyle might be a bigger thing than the oral hygiene part, which this is what I'm seeing for 10 years already, but I'm happy if studies coming out. So, hygiene is important. I see it different than the hygiene that we are all trained to do, so I think the usual hygiene is you have to brush your teeth with a fluoride toothpaste. You should use chemical mouthwashes and you floss. That's basically what you should do, right. Then you go to see the hygienist twice a year and this is how you manage your oral health, right?
Melanie Avalon: Yep. Basically. Was it more stringent about fluoride in Germany than the US, or is it--
Dr. Dom: Its exactly the same? This is what you get trained in university, and as you know, most people are having a hard time to change what they've learned, so they believe in what they learned and what you read, and that fluoride is the best thing to do. So even functional dentists that I know that are a little bit more open minded can kind of attack me if I say flossing is unnatural.
Melanie Avalon: Oh, flossing is unnatural?
Dr. Dom: Yeah. For example, I say flossing is super unnatural, but I obviously come from a different perspective. My perspective is that nature has it right, and that if everything is perfectly healthy and you eat the right stuff and you have no deficiencies, you don't have tooth decay, your body is immune against tooth decay, and you don't have bleeding gums. They're just not bleeding. And then if you introduce flossing, it might be that the teeth are very tight together in a regular system and you floss. It can happen that you cut yourself with the floss and you bleed from the flossing. It's a total different perspective than the regular dentist who sees the average person. The average person has bleeding gums. The average person has periodontitis, or at least gingivitis and obviously tooth decay, because this is the number one chronic disease worldwide with an incidence of 90%. So, yes, in this super unnatural oral ecosystem, you might need a chemical Band-Aid like fluoride and flossing and chemical mouthwashes. But that shouldn't be the long-term solution. That should be a quick Band-Aid until you fix their lifestyle and nutrition, because that's the 80%. Then you can obviously also use oral healthcare strategies that are more natural, the bulletproof ones that I'm usually talking about.
Melanie Avalon: One of the things you said in the book was that for receding gums, that can often be addressed just by brushing differently, I was like, "Oh, wow, that's a paradigm shift." So, we're supposed to brush in circles, not aggressively, horizontally.
Dr. Dom: So most importantly, don't brush actually, or don't do it too hard. Use a softer brush and just basically do it gently. And yeah, you more do like circles, but without any pressure actually. What people often do is just like back and forth brushing with a hard brush. And then they use very abrasive toothpaste because it's marketed as whitening toothpaste, and they just brush the enamel away. It's kind of like filing it down over time. And also, they often brush way too often, like after every single meal, when the enamel is actually when you ate something acidic and the enamel is a little bit more porous, and then you brush, your you brush the hard part away. So do you think in nature, like 200 years ago, let's say 500 years ago, 1000, when we still ate like hunters and gatherers, there was no brush. We had teeth hard as stone. Our teeth are designed to be as hard as granite. And this comes from the inside, through the right diet and nutrition and nutrients, and from the saliva, which is the outside, which rebalances everything. But also, if the saliva is of poor quality and the blood is of poor quality, it doesn't really happen. So having tooth decay is a sign of overall unhealthiness, and it's kind of like osteoporosis of the tooth.
Melanie Avalon: And what about oil pulling?
Dr. Dom: I'm a big fan of oil pulling. If you want, I can tell you the bulletproof oral healthcare strategies I would use. So, there're three things. First of all, you use a toothpaste that is as natural as possible and fluoride free. But also, most toothpaste are not just having fluoride in it. They have toxins like triclosan, sodium lauryl sulphate, a ton of chemical names that you cannot even pronounce. So, stuff that you normally wouldn't eat, why would you put it into your mouth? So first of all, use a natural toothpaste. Second, ditch these chemical mouthwashes like Listerine and all these stuff, all the things that you can find in the store. They are most likely super acidic and full of chemicals that disinfect and kill your oral microbiome. So just throw it away. And number three is instead of this, use coconut oil pulling. I can go into this in a second. And the number three is we use a copper tongue scraper or tongue scraping. And if you have all these three, you can do that once a day and you're good.
Melanie Avalon: So, you like coconut oil for the oil pulling?
Dr. Dom: Yes, you can use various different ones, but coconut oil or extra virgin coconut oil has specific antiviral, antibacterial purposes through the lauric acid in there and it also helps with detoxification. I think it tastes quite nice and it's soothing for the oral microbiome and for the gingiva and also helps the pellicle on your tooth. So that's a good strategy to use. And the only thing is you have to do that for five minutes at least and ideally every day and after the 5 to 15 minutes, you have to spit it out and don't swallow.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I do it with MCT oil and also, I spit it in the toilet. Don't put it down your sink because you will clog. Especially in the winter.
Dr. Dom: Coconut oil would better than MCT because of that different component being more antibacterial and antiviral. MCT has not too much antimicrobial purposes.
Melanie Avalon: The problem with me is it makes me hungry and I'm fasting during the day. I love the way it tastes; it makes me feel like I'm eating, which is why I do the unflavored MCT. I used to use the coconut oil.
Dr. Dom: Do you always fast every day?
Melanie Avalon: Yes. [laughs]
Dr. Dom: Do you think that's good for you as a woman from a medical point of view.
Melanie Avalon: I do. I mean, that’s whole--I think that it can be too stressful. I think it's all like N of 1. So, you need to take into consideration your diet overall, your lifestyle stressors, your cycle, things like that. And I think for some women it's great, for others it will be too much. So, I really think women need to be cognizant of how it plays into their overall life. I do think for women after their menstruating years that most women are good with fasting, but during the fertile years is when you would want to pay more attention.
Dr. Dom: That makes sense. Yeah, I most of the time have to take my patients off fasting because they have so much chronic stress ongoing in their mouth and they need to heal and be a bit more anabolic in the face of this. But yeah, I can see it as a good tool if you know how to use it smartly and yeah, that makes sense. If you implement it more after your fertile years, that's cool. So, what is your feeding window then?
Melanie Avalon: So, I eat just dinner every night, but it's a massive dinner and it's like four or five hours and it's very high protein, so like shockingly [chuckles] high. So basically, eat like pounds of meat and seafood and fruit and cucumbers. So, it's a very anabolic meal, that's for sure.
Dr. Dom: Yeah. If you can do that from your genetics, also always consider body typing in terms of the HRV or your central nervous system. So, when you, for example, use an Oura or biohacking and maybe you have heard of Oura, you probably use those.
Melanie Avalon: Oh. I have it on. Yeah, [laughs] it's like my favorite thing.
Dr. Dom: So, there are people that are more sympathetic dominant by nature, which is, let's say an average HRV nighttime of 20 to 40. And then there are people that are more balanced, which is, let's say 50 to 80. And then there are people that are more parasympathetic dominant, which is, let's say 90 to 150 average. And you always have to take into consideration if this specific range is actually who you are naturally or is it because of, let's say, stresses like in your mouth. But if you are super healthy and you're more sympathetic, it's not the best strategy, for example, to fast. Whereas if you're more parasympathetic and it might work extremely well because you have such a good digestion that you can do that four-to-five-hour big meal that you do and assimilate all of it. So that's also a very highly individual thing, I would say, if that's working or not. But you can see with data and all, use it. But I think it's cool if you can. You're probably very chilled there.
Melanie Avalon: I agree. And I find for me-- so I find that I naturally [chuckles] well, maybe it's not natural, but I feel like I tend to get my second wind and have a cortisol spike and would get sympathetic at night. And by actually eating at night, it kind of turns me back into parasympathetic mode. Yeah. And then I crash.
Dr. Dom: [laughs] Of course, if you eat so much, that's fine. Yeah, okay. It's very interested how all people-- I'm the opposite, actually. I can fast easily, but I'm more like the motor that needs 25 liters on 100 kilometers and can eat shitload of carbs and things. It's probably my genetics from childhood because of all these sports. I'm very good with carbohydrates and things.
Melanie Avalon: I actually very high fruit, so I eat like really high protein and tons of fruit, which is actually interestingly, when I did start getting cavities. So, when I was like low carb, I had perfect teeth, no cavities, no nothing. And I didn't bring in sugar. I just started eating a lot of fruit and I started getting cavities and I was like, "Oh, that's upsetting."
Dr. Dom: But I think it's fine what you're doing. I don't see fruit as too problematic. It little bit depends on if you're too acidic, actually, if you balance it out, because fruit actually is quite, I would say, could be very acidic you're right. You probably need some alkaline fruits if that's possible. Alkaline fruits, let's say normally plants are alkaline in itself.
Melanie Avalon: I was eating a lot of berries and pineapple.
Dr. Dom: I think berries, they shouldn't be too acidic. Pineapple, I'm not sure. You just have to check but this could be something where you can balance out if, you know, "Okay, I need to eat a lot of meat, which is acidic, and I eat a lot of fruit, which could be acidic. You might need to add some more minerals and stuff that are more alkaline to balance the saliva out. Then you could probably be fine with your tooth decay issues. And vitamin D3 is actually critical, vitamin D3, K2, magnesium and yeah.
Melanie Avalon: Two quick last topics. So, one the microbiome. First of all, like I said, I learned so much in your book about the oral versus gut microbiome, and I find it so fascinating that there's not more studies or awareness surrounding this. Just briefly, the oral microbiome versus the gut microbiome. How different are they or how similar are they? I know I was reading something recently, or actually it was a while ago now, but it was proposing that SIBO, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth actually might be from the oral microbiome migrating down rather than colonic microbiome migrating up.
Dr. Dom: I would agree 100%. So, the oral microbiome is actually quite diversified, and I always say-- so basically the oral microbiome and the gut microbiome, they are totally connected because the gut actually starts in your mouth. That's that tube that starts in the mouth and ends at the back door. This is the whole gastrointestinal tract. It's not that the gut only starts in your stomach. It starts in the mouth, that's where the digestion starts. That's where a big immune system is hosting. And there's the biggest entrance for bugs and stuff. And it is about four to tenfold more diversified than the one in the large intestine or something. And obviously you swallow about a liter of saliva every single day, which contains a ton of bacteria or viruses or any sort of oral microbiome. That then obviously also stays in the stomach if it works or it goes into the small intestine, it all depends.
And the thing is, if you have oral interference, like dental repair, like metals, root canals, you have a dysbiosis always. If you had silver amalgam fillings, there are studies showing that amalgam or mercury kills the good bacteria. But what comes instead to help you actually are fungi like and candida. And then you swallow it and then you have candida in your gut. So, you will never get rid of candida or whatever. If you still have, for example, metals in your mouth, it's just not possible. Or in these cavitations, which are oftentimes full of mercury particles. So, you really have to address the mouth kind of as a centerpiece for the whole-body system because it's an extension of your brain. It's not like an arm. An arm is extremities, not that important. It's really a brain nerve and if there're cytokines, if there're toxins and all these things, it will translate not just to the gut, but to all parts in your body. And yeah, it's hard to have. So, if you have a mouth that would look good on The Terminator, it's probably not the best for your microbiome.
Melanie Avalon: It's interesting you talk in the book about-- these theories about specific bacteria in the oral microbiome and their relationship or affinity for certain organs in the body. Like, you talk about a study where-- a transplant study where I don't know if it was like bacteria with either people or rodents with kidney issues and then transplanting it into the animals and then them getting kidney issues.
Dr. Dom: These studies were actually done by Weston Price. That's what most people don't know about Weston Price. He was the first one documented who questioned root canals because he was always interested in the health of his patients, not just repairing teeth and fixing smiles. So, what he would do is he would tell his patients, so I'm assuming that this chronic health issue that you just developed might be connected to your root canal tooth because of this and this issue. Can we take it out? And then he took these teeth out and he implanted the teeth under the skin of thousands of rabbits. So, he probably killed a lot of rabbits. And the rabbits developed 80% of the same symptoms as the host. And in heart issues, 100% identical. So, a huge thing and this is actually Thomas Levy. You should check out Tom Levy, I think he's one of the best heart surgeons or heart doctors out there. He had written books about oral health and root canals and stuff already in the 90s and telling that, in his opinion, root canals and oral health is the main issue for all that chronic heart issues and heart attacks because these bacteria that are lurking in there, next station is the heart if you swallow it. And you should never have any bacterial compartments in your body and in your mouth, you oftentimes have tons, but nobody in the world looks into your mouth. That's the problem. It's kind of like not part of your body.
Melanie Avalon: You even talk about how I didn't know this in development, that we develop our sense of taste before touch. Yeah. Basically, we're just like one big mouth.
Dr. Dom: If we know at the beginning kids are just a huge mouth. There're even theories that we have been a worm or something like this, and we build a body around us while eating all the time. That could be like if you see that theory that the gut looks like a big worm, like a giant worm could be like, the mouse would be this and then the end. But you just build a body on top of it. It's a funny, it's a fascinating idea to think about this, but you never know. And yeah, kids stuff everything into their mouth. Like, from the beginning, everything goes into the mouse. This is how you train your immune system. Do you know that babies are actually born without any harmful oral bacteria. It only comes within a couple of days and also, the oral microbiome obviously changes. So, you because you're fasting and doing different type of diet, you definitely have a different microbiome than somebody who eats a standard Western diet or someone who has a lot of material, like artificial material in the mouth might not have the same as a breastfed baby, for example. And a formula fed baby has a different microbiome, oral microbiome and gut microbiome than a breastfed baby. So that's really changing within 12 to 24 hours, depending on substrate.
Melanie Avalon: Does it change with kissing or does our oral microbiome mimic our partners are romantic.
Dr. Dom: I would say over time, if you have a partner for a long time, I think not just the oral microbiome, but the overall microbiome will be quite symbiotic and quite the same over time because you just adapt yourself. So, I'm with my wife for 20 years, so I'm quite sure that we kind of have a very similar microbiome.
Melanie Avalon: Do you know Bristle, who I mentioned at the beginning? Have you heard of this company?
Dr. Dom: I think I have heard of Bristle, but it's probably just the US thing or maybe, you know, a lot of companies reach out to me, so I might have heard of it through this sounds familiar, at least. Is it UK? "No"
Melanie Avalon: They're in the US. I don't know if they go to the UK as well. I was actually talking to them before this, saying I was interviewing you because yeah, they actually test, they provide an at home oral microbiome test kit. And they're doing so much data collection, it's really promising research, and they're finding all these correlations between people's different oral microbiome strains, and how it correlates to oral health conditions and also whole body conditions.
Dr. Dom: Yes, I have heard of them and I know there are more and more people coming out with oral microbiome tests. The only thing that they're all missing still, and I think this is something you can improve on, is the fact that most people had dental repair done and they never take into consideration that as long as you have metals, root canals or cavitations you will never get that microbiome back to where it should be because this is the wrong ecosystem to do so. So, the test is fine, but what is the solution? So obviously it works perfectly for someone who has a natural, all healthy mouth to check the microbiome and see, "Oh, maybe there's too much of mutants, there's too much of Actinomycetes or whatever, but for someone who is already like having a sewer in their mouth, it's difficult. You have to see it more holistically.
Melanie Avalon: So that was the last question I wanted to get to. So, people who do have metals in their mouth because obviously it's, well, [laughs] maybe it's not obvious, but seems to be very important to remove them in a protected fashion. How bad is it if somebody has metal and they get it removed not in a very protected fashion.
Dr. Dom: That's very bad. So, the most people with chronic health issues I've seen had it after an unsuccessful amalgam removal. Because what happens? So metal, there are different sort of metals, but let's go with the amalgam. There's 50% mercury in it, and mercury is the most toxic, non-radioactive element known to men. So, you will intoxicate yourself on a daily basis with a little bit of mercury vapor the whole time when you have them in your mouth. But it's only about two to three microns per filling per day. But if you take that mercury fillings out without protection, it might be 100, a 1000-fold more mercury, which then enters your nervous system and can give you a huge shock. This is why it's so critical to not freak out with all the information that I give you, but to see it just as more new information and then come up with a strategy, find the right resources, find the right people that know how, for example, to remove metals safely. And we use sevenfold protection. It's not just a rubber dam. We even have an air filter that sucks up 99%. We use IV nutrition during around everything you can imagine to make sure that we don't do more harm than you already have.
Melanie Avalon: Wow, okay. Well, so on that note, how should people find a practitioner to work with? Just google biological dentist?
Dr. Dom: Yeah. I think in the US there's one body, it's called the IAOMT. I think it's the International Academy of I don't know, I don't remember. But doesn't matter. Google IAOMT and they certify dentists to be smart certified, smart S-M-A-R-T stands for Safe Mercury Amalgam Filling Removal Technique. And they know what to do. That doesn't mean that they are fully trained biology dentists the way I would like to see it, because that's almost nonexisting. But you at least be sure that they will remove the metals safely. I would never go to any regular dentist to remove my metals. Then just leave it in your mouth. Optimize everything you can do with nutrition, lifestyle hacking, fasting, you can do the 80% already and then look for someone. And this is a huge investment that should be done once in a lifetime and perfectly. Like I said, "We combine the high-tech dentistry in one week with functional medicine health optimization."
So, people, they start round about two to six weeks prior to even seeing me with my online calls, with the right nutrition, the right nutrients, from macro to micro to be boosted when they arrive. And then we use everything we have. We have a full biohacking lab or health optimization lab using IV nutrition, using hyperbaric, infrared saunas, red light, you name it, in the clinic just to help your body heal even better. Plus, obviously doing everything as high tech as possible when it comes to the dental work, for example, ceramic implants, removing metals safely, doing the cavitations, using ozone, using PRP, everything. It's all there to make you heal as perfect as possible. I'm just helping your body heal because your body will actually do it himself if he can-- or itself if it can. So, we would just make sure that you get into a healing mode and that we support you along the way and that you learn as much as possible and that I never see you again as a dental patient, because then I did something wrong. Because the future idea is obviously that we don't need dental repair, but that will take a couple of years.
Melanie Avalon: Well, thank you so much. So, friends, we only barely scratched the surface of everything in Dr. Dom's book, It's All in Your Mouth, definitely check that out. I'll put link to it in the show notes. The last question that I ask every single guest on this show, and it's just because I realize more and more each day how important mindset is. So, what is something that you're grateful for?
Dr. Dom: I'm actually grateful for so many things. I'm super grateful right now, obviously, that I have a little daughter that is only three weeks of age. This is the fourth baby.
Melanie Avalon: Three weeks?
Dr. Dom: Three weeks is my child.
Melanie Avalon: Oh, my goodness. Congrats. [laughs]
Dr. Dom: Thanks. I'm very grateful for her. Her name is Zoe and she complimented--
Melanie Avalon: That's my favorite name.
Dr. Dom: It is?
Melanie Avalon: Yes. Oh, [laughs] I love that name.
Dr. Dom: She complimented the whole tribe, so the wolf pack. I had three boys so far. I think she made it all complete, so I'm very grateful for that. I'm also super grateful for the journey I'm on and that I'm able to help as many people out there with, like, it was a blessing in disguise that I got sick so early. And I'm very grateful that I did 8 hours straight up surgery today and help people from all over the world including America. And yeah, so basically, whatever I do, I'm super grateful and actually do it every single evening before I bring my kids to bed or when I bring my kids to bed, we always ask, what are you grateful for today? And then all of us say about 10 things, and then we go to sleep. I'm big on mindset too, so I love that.
Melanie Avalon: Oh, I love that so much. Well, congrats. I did not know you just had a baby. Thank you for being here, again everything that you're doing, this has been absolutely amazing. I appreciate it so much. I just hope everything, this information that you're sharing continues to enter more the popular sphere and becomes more of the norm rather than on the fringe. Thank you so much.
Dr. Dom: That's why I do this. Yeah, thank you so much for having me and for spreading all that information for what you're doing, because I think that's how we co-elevate and can help the many, because I think that's needed right now.
Melanie Avalon: Do you take new patients? I feel like I need to come to Germany. [chuckles]
Dr. Dom: Yeah. With us it's more like I say we repair that once.
Melanie Avalon: Like one and done.
Dr. Dom: One and done, obviously you have to come a second time because the implants have to heal in, but then if you have your crown work or your veneers or whatever, then usually you don't need to come unless you want a biohack or health optimization stuff. But that's more for local ones. So yes, we always take new patients and we are four doctors actually in the clinic. I'm the one doing all the surgeries, but the other ones do that too. But I'm only exclusively doing this, but yes. So please come see me, send me your stuff. I'm happy to send you a preliminary treatment plan remotely, like I always do. That's what I'm here for.
Melanie Avalon: Oh wow. Well, I will put a link to your clinic in the show notes. My parents would be so happy. They try to get me to go to Germany literally like two or three times a year.
Dr. Dom: And then it's perfect. You just come and see me.
Melanie Avalon: I'll just stay at our apartment there and go down. Yeah.
Dr. Dom: Easy. One more thing that I just have in my mind, for the first time I'm launching my online course for everyone so that not just my patients can get it. So that might be interesting for your following. And I have a link where I give out the whole bulletproof oral healthcare strategy for free as a PDF. If you want to have that link, you can include that to the show notes and then maybe it's a value for all your-- I think it's a good value for the community. Everything we touched on is in a four-page PDF and you know what to do.
Melanie Avalon: So, what is that link? Or should we just put in the show notes?
Dr. Dom: I will send it to you if you want. Yeah, and then we can just put it in the show notes. Yeah, if you want.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, no, I do, I do. This is great, thank you. Well, any other links you want to put out there for how people can follow your work? I know you're big on Instagram.
Dr. Dom: That's the easiest for me is Instagram because there's also the Tap Bio where you have access to my clinic, to book, to podcasts, to everything. It's probably the one stop shop link. The Tap Bio in my bio, does it make sense?
Melanie Avalon: It's @drDom on Instagram.
Dr. Dom: Yeah, it's @drDom. And there's the number one behind it, so @drDom1. That's where you find me the easiest.
Melanie Avalon: Well, thank you again so much. This has been so amazing and I look forward to speaking with you more in the future. And just thank you again for all that you're doing. I really, really appreciate it.
Dr. Dom: Thank you ever so much and likewise.
Melanie Avalon: Have a good evening.
Dr. Dom: You too.
Melanie Avalon: Bye.
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