In Keeping Your Teeth Healthy for Life!
Dr. Robert O. Nara
Lecture given before the National Health Federation, San Francisco, California 1986
Good Afternoon! My name is Bob Nara. Can you hear me in the back? Ok, I’ll try to speak up as well as I can. We have a nice crowd here today. We thank you. I’d like to thank the National Health Federation for asking me back again this year. I’ve had an opportunity to be with you folks a time or two before. In fact I’m no stranger to the National Health Federation. Going back quite a way, because in the July/August issue of the 1978 NHF Bulletin there was about twenty-two pages devoted to my battle with the establishment. At that time, it was going to put me out of business, in fact, it did for awhile and without some well written letters by the National Health Federation members, I may still not be back in practice for all I know. So much of the credit for what is happening here with your presentation today, really is your doing and if you have a group of people who are willing to stand up and be counted today you can have most anything you want in this country, so thank you, because you’re the people that help do that.
Now, my goal in life as best I can tell you is to help people keep their natural teeth in their mouth for a whole lifetime without any pain, without any expense, without any fear and really without ever even going to see the dentist. Because the things that you need to know to keep your teeth healthy, you probably are not going to learn from a dentist; because primarily, dentists are mechanically oriented and money motivated. So, it’s a little hard to learn from them what you need to know to keep your teeth and gums healthy for a lifetime.
In giving some thought to what I would have to say to you folks today, to discuss with you, I gave it considerable thought this time because each time that I come to the National Health Federation it seems like more and more people want to hear what it is that I have to say; so I’m paying more and more attention to what it is that I’m saying and trying to help you learn just exactly what it is that we have to offer so that you can take the benefits of this type of an approach and take it home and use it everyday and get the benefits for yourselves and your family. So, I’d like to talk about seven factors here today, which I’ve identified very carefully as little departments or ideas or things that you should think about in order to accomplish these things that I think are quite possible.
The first one is nutrition. Now, number one on the list of almost anything that has to do with health, obviously, is that if you don’t eat right you’re not going to be very healthy. I mean, you folks know far more about that than I do. I’m not trained in nutrition and you’ve been studying probably a lot longer than I have, but the basic building blocks of the body are pretty obvious to most of us that have paid any attention. We know that there are certain vitamins and minerals and ingredients that we should take in. The teeth are really not a whole lot different than your bones. The teeth are made up of primarily calcium and phosphorus and the form of various phosphate compounds. The only difference between the teeth and the bone really, is that the teeth have more calcium in it and less of the organic type of materials that help make up the jawbone; so I’m not here to tell you anything about what you should be eating. You know more about that probably than I do.
I had the opportunity, by the way today, to meet a lovely lady, whose book we’ve been recommending, by the way, because I don’t know that much about nutrition, so I’ve been looking, as you have, to find books and materials written by other people that I think know more about it than I do. Our author, Elaine Swanson - against the wall over there - (Hi there, Elaine) has a book out called, ‘The Harvest Diet.’ I’ve read a lot of books on nutrition and as I told her today, if I said it’s the best book, then a bunch of hands would go up and say, “Oh no, that’s not the best book, somebody else’s book is the best,” so I will say this, “it’s one of the very best that I’ve ever read” and it concentrates on some things about helping to strengthen the immune system and helping to eliminate allergies and some of the other things that doesn’t sound a whole lot like teeth, but they’re associated in the long run.
Now, all of you have been exposed to some of the aspects of things like vitamin C and what it does for our bodies and how to keep your body healthy and more defensive to diseases and we’ll talk more as the next three days go on because I’ll have an opportunity to speak with some of you personally. We do have a booth downstairs, its number 54. So if you have some specific questions that we don’t get a chance to cover here today or this afternoon you can ask down there. Also, I have promised people for years and I haven’t broken my promise yet, that I know of, that if anybody wants a specific question answered about their teeth or their dental health, if they just simply write me a letter, I will try to get you a specific answer back in the mail. You can reach me, my name is Dr. Robert Nara, or you can either address it to just our organization, the name of that is Oramedics. The street address (omitted).1
So ‘nutrition’ is one of the key factors and we’ll go on to some of the other seven. Now the next thing that you have to pay close attention to is what I call ‘frame of reference.’ Now we’re all taped to a degree. We get confused in life because someone has told us that something is true when in reality maybe it’s not true. I like to call it the ‘frame of reference.’ I’m going to ask you a question. If you were interested in purchasing a toothbrush and you went to a drugstore to try to buy this toothbrush, but since birth you could not speak and also you were deaf, but you’re in this drugstore now and you want to buy a toothbrush. Now, you can look around, but you can’t see the toothbrush section and you’re in a little bit of a hurry, so a clerk comes by or the pharmacist is there and you would like to relate to that person that you would like to buy a toothbrush. What would you do? Draw a picture, pretend like you’re brushing and obviously they would know what you were looking for.
OK, now, I want you to pretend that you’re trying to buy a comb and you are a blind person. What would you do then? Well, if you were blind, see, you could merely ask for it. You could say, “I would like to buy a comb.” Now, the frame of reference that your mind set, you see, was that you’re going to have to pantomime, because that’s what you expected to have to do. Now if you expected that you have to see a dentist every six months and you have to brush your teeth twice a day and you can’t eat sweets and somehow or other that’s going to have you have healthy teeth, you are sorrowfully mistaken; because those three methods really have very little and in fact, practically nothing to do with you keeping your teeth healthy for a lifetime.
There are all kinds of research studies that show that seeing the dentist twice a year doesn’t lower the incidence of dental disease. OK, it’s not a preventive thing at all. If you go there and have your teeth scraped, x-rays taken and a few other things, that’s really not a preventive service, it’s preventing nothing. It may be catching up with all of the bad things that have happened, but it prevents nothing. In fact, Health and Human Services data shows that at age 65, blacks and whites in this country have the same number of missing teeth. At age 65, however, the white segment has about seven times more fillings than the blacks and across the board spends about 20 times more money in a lifetime. But at 65 they have the same number of missing teeth, what does that tell you? That means that they’re not getting a whole lot for their 20-times-more-money and those seven-times-more-fillings -- really don’t keep those teeth lasting any longer. This isn’t your fault, by the way. This is the fault of the dental profession.
A while back I was reading the Wall Street Journal one day and I came across this article and they were quoting an Executive Director of the American Dental Association and the gentleman, a dentist, said, “It’s usually impossible to remove all plaque by flossing or other methods, and even if it were, most people wouldn’t be likely to follow a rigid daily plaque removal routine. The perfection that would be ideal is impossible to achieve,” he says. Now, I couldn’t believe that a dentist would write that. Especially be quoted in a national newspaper. So, I wrote to him and I asked him if, in reality he had been quoted correctly, and I got a prompt answer. It said, “Dear Dr. Nara, this acknowledges your recent letter and to say that the Wall Street Journal did, in fact, quote me correctly.”
Now, my point is this, is that the profession believes that you people are a bunch of dummies! They don’t think that you can prevent dental disease! They think that you’re lazy and slovenly and you’re not going to do anything about it and that the end result is that no matter what you do, you’re going to get dental disease. Now ask yourself a question? If you believe that you’re going to get dental disease, what’s going to happen? You’re going to get it! OK, now is that detrimental to the dentist in any way? OK, that’s one of the reasons we wrote this little book called, ‘Money By The Mouthful.’ Because it’s a very profitable arrangement that the dentists have set up because over a period of time, people’s teeth are decaying and they have gum problems and ultimately they wind up wearing false teeth, most of us.
At age 65 by the way, the average American has only four teeth left and that’s the same for blacks and whites. Now, I always enjoy doing this at meetings like this because it proves that it’s an important point to me. OK, of the people that say are roughly between the age 60 and 70 categories, I’m going to ask you a question. If you’re in that age bracket and you have more than four teeth left in your mouth, put up your hands. Ok, look at that. Now in the same age brackets who have less than four teeth left in your mouth, put up your hands. OK, one person in the whole room. Now do you see what is happening with your health group here? OK, we just ran a little test and matched you with the national averages and we had 40 or 50 hands here versus one. OK, so, what you’re doing is helping you, obviously. You see, you’re not wasting your time coming to these kinds of meetings because there’s the proof in the pudding right there.
Now, there are several things that we don’t really have time to get in any great depth about, but I want to leave you with the two ideas because in the books and the materials that we have, we can’t cover it all here today. But yes Virginia, you can heal cavities. OK, areas of decay in the tooth structure are caused simply by the calcium and phosphate ions leaving the tooth. The acids and toxic waste products leach these minerals right out of the tooth and they go into the solution in the saliva and your saliva normally has high concentrations of calcium and phosphorous in it anyway when your diet and everything else is healthy and everything else is running smoothly. So when these calcium deposits leave the tooth structure and they’re in solution what’s to stop them from being re-deposited. Well, in reality they are. In fact, when a cavity is forming, some of the calcium and phosphorous ions are going away and some are being re-deposited. Now if they’re going away faster than they’re being re-deposited, then the cavity is getting bigger. If they’re being deposited faster than they’re being leached out of the tooth then it’s healing. It’s in all of the literature. It’s in all of the professional journals, the research journals. It’s called remineralization. The leader of the research and remineralization is a dentist by the name of Dr. Leon Silverstone who practices and teaches at the University of Iowa. Dr. Silverstone has published innumerable articles about how teeth remineralize, along with a whole gamut of other researchers including a dentist by the name of Coleridge and a whole bunch of them. But, take it from me, the research is all in. Cavities can remineralize and heal.
Now, the same thing is true of gum problems. Frequently, dentists today are telling people if your gums are sick or they’re inflamed or you’ve got pockets or whatever, that the answer to that is to have your gums cut, to have gum surgery. Now ask yourself a question? If your cavities can heal, OK, which is a new frame of reference, isn’t it? It’s like that blind person and the comb. OK, don’t get shook now, thinking this is the only way we’re going to get the comb or don’t get shook and think we can’t heal cavities -- we can, with your new frame of reference. Now, you will be able to assimilate this idea that cavities heal, gums heal, the bone grows back up. If some dentist has told you that once the bone is gone or once the gums recede they won’t come back up, they’re simply not reading their own literature. Because it’s in the literature and the dentists’ don’t practice it.
A short time ago ‘American Health’ magazine had a little article and they quoted a group called, ‘Opinion Research Corporation.’ This group said that the biggest problem in preventive dental health is that the dentists don’t know how to practice the prevention. It’s not that the public doesn’t do it; it’s that the dentists don’t know how to do it. So if they don’t know how to do it, how can they tell the public how to do it? Well unfortunately, under today’s circumstances, they can’t. But, not to worry, because everything that you need to know about healing cavities, gums, getting bone to grow back, that’s all a matter of knowledge, isn’t it? OK, that’s available in the written form or on cassette tapes or whatever else it is that you need to gain the knowledge. So, we’ll talk more about knowledge in a minute or two.
One of the biggest benefits of course, in this sort of thing, is that you save money. Now that’s a pretty good motivator right there, isn’t it? OK, so now if we’re looking for motivating things, we certainly can find some. The dentists frame of reference, by and large and I’ve attended a lot of dental meetings and I’ve given lectures on practice management and how dentists can be more functional in their offices. Unfortunately, many of them lose the point. Because I have found that by treating the public in such a way that I help them not have the disease any more, so their body takes over and heals these things, I have such an influx of brand new people who have all these dental difficulties that I’ve always made far more money than I need on all of the problems that the new people have. But I certainly don’t want to put up with new problems in the people who are part of the practice. That’s insanity.
OK, if I can’t help them stop the disease when I know it can be totally stopped and healed and reversed and all those things then think about it for a minute. If I didn’t help that person gain that knowledge and change that frame of reference and get on this track of keeping their teeth so healthy they don't need a dentist. If I can't communicate that well then I'm a part of their future dental disease, aren’t I? Now dentists don’t buy that philosophy, I’m here to tell you. OK, but I buy it and that’s why over a period of years I have always had more people than I could possibly handle in a practice in a little town where most of the dentists there over the years haven’t done a whole lot except patch and pull teeth.
Point number three: Now that we’ve talked about nutrition and changing your frame of reference; point number three, that I would like to have you consider for a few moments is this: what are the options? Know matter what it is that I’m doing in life these days, if I run into some kind of a difficult situation, my car won’t run or… whatever. I start to ask myself what are the options, what are the choices that I have. Well, I can walk or I can call the car dealer to come and pick it up…what are the choices that we have? Now, thinking about dental health and other aspects of health too, not only dental, what are our choices? OK, well the first choice is we can continue to think the old way, can’t we? That’s a choice. What’s that going to get us? You already know the answer to that. OK? Or we can choose to think in a new way. Now, if you choose to think in a new way, you’re already well on your way to achieving a mouth that may stay so healthy that you can kiss your dentist goodbye forever. OK? And it’s very possible.
People chuckle at times and I use a little analogy, I say, “Look, you know, there’re all kinds of people that are born, live and die and never see a psychiatrist. OK, they don’t run down every six months to get their brains cleaned and checked. They manage to live for a whole lifetime without seeing a psychiatrist. Now, it’s my belief that people could easily live for an entire lifetime without ever going to see a dentist.” In fact, if you checked carefully some of these studies that have been done that show that if you take a group of people that go to the dentist religiously every six months, match them to a group of people that go hit and miss or not at all, there’s one basic difference. The ones that don’t go or hit and miss, have more teeth in their mouths. That’s a fact. It’s a scientific fact. The people don’t pull the teeth out themselves, at least not permanent teeth. So, be very careful, because the more frequently you go to the dentist -- you can put it on a graph -- the fewer teeth you probably will have. So, if you want to think in a new way, then the first thing to do, as far as I’m concerned, is to gain some knowledge.
If you have any dental benefits, by the way, at work, one of the new ways to think here, in my opinion, is to think along the lines of: instead of having your employer pay those premiums on those dental policies, go to the employer and ask him to pay you. OK? The employer shouldn’t really care whom he pays the money to. If it costs him X number of dollars per year for dental benefits for you, should the employer care whether he pays you or some insurance company? OK, so ask him for the money. Then go follow the program like Oramedics and in a lifetime, I can put this on a graph for you, in a lifetime, you can save enough money to retire on. Just from dental benefits alone. Then if you take the same sort of thinking about health care, medical insurance, and take that money too, and take good care of yourself and go out and buy a major medical policy with a big deductible, OK, so that if some drastic thing happens to you, you can’t imagine how much money you can save in a lifetime especially if you put it in a CD or something where it earns interest at today’s rate at ten per cent. You know that doubles every seven years and all of a sudden by the time you’re 40 or 50 years old, if you start young, you’ve got enough money to retire on. Just from medical and dental benefits. Not only that, but you’re going to be healthy and live longer. I mean how many benefits do you need?
OK, what are the options? It’s think the old way, think the new way and take charge of your own dental destiny. I mean you’re the people with the teeth and the money. You know, the dentists works for you. The dentist, you know, he’s your employee. Don’t be pushed around by the dentist. When the dentist says, well, I’m going to do this or that, ask him why, or her. Why are you doing this? I don’t quite understand this and if they’re not willing to sit down and talk to you and explain and quote fees and tell you what the side effects are and explain the anesthetics or whatever else is going to happen in that office, leave. Go find a dentist who will. And dentists are getting very hungry today by the way, there’s a shortage of patients; there’s way too many dentists and not enough people coming to their offices. However, another important piece of data which you might like to know is this: that according to Health and Human Services two-thirds of all Americans have unmet dental needs in their mouths. So this means that it’s not that dentists really are not busy enough, the people just aren’t going. At least two-thirds of them just simply are not going and you know the reasons: pain, fear, money. OK. But if the dentists’ only reach the public with the idea, “Hey, you know, if you do get them fixed, they’ll stay fixed. You don’t have to go back in six months and have more cavities or have that tooth reamed or root canal underneath the crown and the all the rest of the things that they talk about.”
OK, number four on our list of seven steps, is knowledge. Now the first thing that I want you to think about in this regard is that I want you to take every bit of existing knowledge that you have right now, that has to do with how to keep your body healthy, how to keep your mind healthy and use it all in relation to your teeth. Because most of the knowledge you already have about the other parts of your mind and body are the same things that your teeth need. For some strange reason, I think the dentists had something to do with this. We look upon teeth differently than the rest of the body. They can’t heal. They’re hard structure, how’re you going to heal holes in your teeth. If the gums have receded, they can’t grow back up. OK, if you lose bone support and you get pyorrhea, it can’t grow any new bone. Well, if you think that way then it’s impossible for you to take advantage of these things that are all scientifically proven. So take all of the existing knowledge that you already have and apply it to your teeth and gums because they’re made out of the same kind of compounds and minerals and things that the rest of your body is made out of.
OK, now start to gain new knowledge, not only knowledge about other things; start to gain brand new knowledge. Don’t depend on your dentist for this knowledge. You simply are not going to get it there, unless you have a very unique dentist. You’re not going to learn much in the form of new knowledge from your dentist and if you do, by the way and you feel confident that you have a dentist some place, then you write to me and tell me what that dentist’s name is and I’ll be on the phone to that dentist because I’ll want to know what that dentist’s name and address and phone number is because I have thousands of people every year ask me where can I find a dentist that thinks like you think. Unfortunately, there are so few of them that I can’t find them myself. So, if you find one, please be sure to send me their name and I will check them out, by the way, because you have to be a little careful, there are a lot of dentists who are calling themselves holistic dentists today. I think that’s because they’re looking for holes.
The next thing that I want you to do, is that I want you to learn the cause of your problem. You see, dentists don’t tell you what the cause is. “Oh, Mrs. Jones, you have six cavities, your gums are receding, OK, you’re going to need three crowns, two jackets, four root canals… a partial.” They never told you what was wrong with the teeth, what caused the thing. All they told you was all of the fancy mechanical labels, the things that they’re going to do to your teeth. They don’t tell you what caused the problem. Now if you don’t understand the cause of a problem, how can you possibly be part of the solution? Now, you‘re all intelligent people. OK, if you don’t understand the cause of a problem, what chance do you have of arriving at a potentially sound solution? None. Other than maybe you’re just flat out lucky… Just make a wild guess… OK, in my opinion, that’s not going to work to good. So, you have to learn what is causing your problem. Unless you understand that, you have no hope of being part of the solution and again the best thing that I can offer you is books and materials.
We’ve tried to condense these methods. I’ve tried to make these messages as simple and easy as I possibly can so that children can read them if necessary and understand. What we’ve talked about are already in these books. The four things that I’ve mentioned already are in the books and we’ve got three to go. OK.
We’re touching on number five which is biologic balance. In order for your teeth and gums and jawbones to stay healthy, your mouth must be in a state of what I call ‘biologic balance.’ Now, if you have a lot of heavy deposits on the teeth; either the plaque kind which is the soft kind - but I’m talking more about the hard kind of stuff that sticks on there: The tartar. OK, if you have a lot of either hard or soft debris stuck to your teeth, you have a problem. It’s not supposed to be there. OK, you don’t take the dishes after dinner and put them back in the cupboard. You clean the dishes before you put them back in the cupboard. Unfortunately, in almost every home in the United States the dishes go back in the cupboard very clean at night and the teeth go to bed and they’re not anywhere near as clean as the dishes. But, the dishes don’t rot or decay, so what we have to do is we have to get those teeth as clean as we clean the dishes.
Now another factor immediately is this: what would happen if you turned out all the lights in the kitchen and went in there and put some soap in the sink and tried to wash the dishes in the dark? If you couldn’t see those dishes you’d probably leave some of the food particles on there, because you almost have to see them to get them clean enough and some of these things apply to teeth too. We have all kinds of little things that will help you down at the booth, there is a nice little mirror with a light… it’s inexpensive. You can see in your mouth just like the dentist can. The dentist has a light and a mirror and the dentist can see in there really well. Its dark in there you know, so it’s hard to see. A dentist couldn’t see much inside your mouth without his or her mirror or light. Ok, so you can buy one. They’re inexpensive. You can even get the real cheap ones, very small ones. Without these things you cannot learn really what you’re going to need to know. So, to achieve this biologic balance, keep in mind that you have to eliminate many of these deposits, hard and soft.
Now, the diet comes in here, the nutrition comes in because if you have a certain diet that is short of the building blocks, in other words, if you’re short of the building blocks that the teeth are made out of, primarily calcium and the phosphates, then your teeth are probably going to be less healthy, because your saliva won’t have a high enough concentration for that. Now, even for those folks that have this immediate problem, a company down in Dallas, Texas, by the name of Shear Laboratories, has made a product called Zerolube2 and this product will help remineralize the teeth because it’s a high concentration of calcium and phosphate ions. So, if you use this on a temporary basis and you don’t need it for any great length of time, you’ll start to help heal teeth almost instantly. So there are products and methods that will speed things up. In other words it will make it happen faster for you.
Now, the same things that we’re talking about healing the cavities in this state of biologic balance; obviously, it’s the same thing as the gum tissue. The gums cannot heal if you have deficiencies. Vitamin C is one of the ones that you’re all familiar with and people who have scurvy, the people who used to travel across oceans on ships had very serious difficulties with their gums, they would bleed, they would get puffy. We’ve been lead to believe, as I’m sure you’ve been made aware of, that some of these shortages in the body were caused by a deficiency of vitamin C. Now, we don’t see a lot of scurvy these days, because we get enough vitamin C here and there and some other ingredients just from our normal diets that scurvy is not a commonly seen disease today -- at least not, obviously, in circles like this one. Now, you can’t have a lot of infection going on in the mouth anywhere. If you have a periodontal infection or a nerve that’s devital and you have some abscess, whether it’s hidden or partially hidden, if you have a cut on your finger, in the skin and there’s dirt or infection in that cut, it won’t heal will it?
Ok, so in order to make a cut heal, if a youngster falls down and skins their knee badly and there’s some gravel or sand, you know, in the wound, the first thing you do is try to debride (clean) that wound, you try to get the sand, the gravel out. Whatever’s in there, the foreign body has to come out. Did you ever get a splinter in your finger? That’s a foreign body and if you can’t get the splinter out, what happens? It festers up. The body says, “Oh-oh, there’s something there that’s not normal, we’ve got to get rid of that.” So a bunch of white blood cells rush down there and they get all around that and they form pus and finally the splinter comes out on its own. That’s what happens to your gums, it’s the same thing. Gum tissue disease is the same thing as getting a splinter in your finger. Your body doesn’t know the difference between a splinter in your finger and that garbage that collects on the teeth that we call calculus, tartar or plaque. Your body treats both of them the same way. You get rid of the problem, get the splinter out of there, the body heals. It’s very simple. In fact, that’s part of the reason that it’s not delivered to the public, it’s not discussed, because in the final analysis, it’s so simple that nobody does it. I can’t understand why my colleagues in dentistry haven’t seen fit to come out of the closet or whatever you want to call it, and come out and say, “Look, help the people to heal the situations and we’ll fix the other problems, we’ll make enough money on that.” With two-thirds of the public having unmet dental needs, they’re not going to go hungry.
Another thing that you have to keep in mind with this biologic balance is this: that inside the mouth, the tissue in there is not called skin, like this stuff out here. Inside the mouth it’s called mucosa. The difference between mucosa and skin is very simple. Inside there’s only one layer of cells, only one layer of epithelium. Out on your skin out here, you’ve got 20, 30 or 40 layers and it’s a very protective mechanism. You can rub it hard, or you can do all kinds of things to it and bacteria don’t get in your blood stream. But inside the mouth there’s only one cell layer of epithelia and even a minor little cut in the mouth allows bacteria to go directly into the blood stream. So any injuries within the mouth are very important injuries, because they offer an immediate method or avenue for the bacteria to get directly into the blood stream. In fact, there’s substantial evidence that shows that after an extensive cleaning, certain numbers of people in our society, not that many, maybe it’s one in hundreds of thousands, wind up with what’s called sub acute bacterial endocarditis (SBE) because the bacteria getting into the blood stream from an extensive tooth cleaning can harbor on a heart valve and start growing and you wind up dead, because to survive a severe case of SBE is very difficult, it’s almost always terminal.
OK, so the tissue in there is only one cell thickness, so you have to be careful of that. You have to keep that in mind. The gums have a lot of blood vessels in them. The bone, however, has a limited blood supply. We don’t have a lot of blood vessels running through our jawbone, so any kind of infection in the bone is very important to you. It can result in all kinds of things, meningitis and all different kinds of things. There are a lot of people who lose their lives today because of some problem within the mouth that nobody ever realizes where that problem came from. So this biologic balance that I’m talking about, it’s easy to achieve if you know how. But you have to have some knowledge. You have to understand the mouth and the tissues in there and the blood vessels and a few other things.
OK, number six is, if you finally gain this knowledge, what’re you going to do with it? You have to take action! Ok, so number six is ACTION. You know, it’s fine to have certain knowledge, but if we don’t put that knowledge to use, it’s of no value to us. In fact, when you do testing for health education, you don’t bother testing for what people know. That means nothing in regards to health education. You test for what they do about what they know. Is there anybody in this room that would like to make the position that smoking cigarettes is good for your health? And anybody would like to debate me that I’m going to say it’s bad for your health and anybody would like to say it’s good for your health? OK, so obviously nobody in the room thinks that smoking is good for health. The people that smoke know it’s not good for their health. So, there’s no sense testing them. You ask them a question and say, “Is smoking good for your health or bad for your health?” They’ll all answer, bad. So, in health education when it comes to this business of taking action, you don’t care what they know, what you want to know is what they DO about what they know. So, if you’re going to take action you may have to change your frame of reference, you may have to do a little homework, you may have to gain some knowledge and you may have to start doing a few things a little differently than you’ve been doing them before.
Now, this is not that tough a situation, by the way. A lot of people think immediately that they’re going to have to spend and hour and a half in the bathroom everyday in order to keep their teeth. That’s not true. The methods that we recommend can be done in probably five minutes or less once you know how to do it. Most of the time you can either be watching television while you take the five minutes or maybe when you first start, ten. You can be watching television, reading a book, looking out the window, you can be doing all kinds of things because you’re not going to be in your bathroom now, using a bunch of this glop called toothpaste and getting a whole mouthful of foam so that you can’t do anything but spit, so you have to have a sink. OK, so we’re going to get you out of the bathroom now to clean your teeth. You’re going to clean them in the living room watching television or someplace else in the house where you’re not going to spend 37 seconds brushing them and quit. Because the average American, when they brush their teeth, they brush for 37 seconds, that’s the American average. If you don’t use toothpaste, but you sit in front of the television set with your brush in your mouth and brush, you’ll find that if nothing else changes, the average person brushes for four minutes. Now, you can’t get the plaque off your teeth in 37 seconds. I don’t care what kind of detergent you put in there, and that’s all that toothpastes are anyway, it’s just a detergent.
OK, so let’s face it. Nobody wants to have bleeding gums. Nobody wants to have cavities. Anybody in the room anxious to wear false teeth? You get up in the morning and say, I think I’m going to have my teeth all pulled out and wear dentures. That sounds like a fun thing to do. I mean that’s insane. Nobody wants that. Yet, that’s what’s happening to almost all of us. At age 65, as I said, the average American only has four teeth left and if you project that to seventy, the average American is totally edentulous -- no teeth. OK, now if you want to learn about digestion and a few other things, with natural teeth you can exert a pressure of about 30,000 pounds per square inch. When you bite down with natural teeth, if you measured the per square inch force, roughly 30,000 pounds; that’s why circus entertainers can hang by their teeth, biting on a leather strap. You think you dare try that with dentures in your mouth? Now the people who, unfortunately wear dentures, and hey, I’ve been at this game for over twenty-five years; the denture wearers are telling everybody, “Hey these teeth are just as good as my own teeth, in fact, they’re even better because they don’t hurt and I don’t have to spend any more money and this and that and the other thing.” I’m here to tell you that that is simply not true. You should hear what they’re telling the dentist about those dentures. Ok, but they’re not going to admit to the fact that they made a mistake.
OK, now the products and methods are available to help you create a biologic balance in your mouth. You can do it at home. You can learn through written materials and certain little diagrams and things. That’s why we put together this program called Oramedics. I used it in my office very effectively for about ten to fifteen years when I’d realized that for the rest of my life I was probably only going to treat five thousand more people and it seemed like these methods were so beneficial that, why fall short five thousand, forget it. When I was interviewed by Phil Donahue, for example, they tell me that on that program there’s roughly an audience of maybe ten million or something like that. So the ten million people watching my presentation on Donahue, many of them had to say to themselves, “This fellow makes sense, let’s go home and do that.” So how many people did I affect by that one program? Millions, probably. I mean, maybe they’re not using some of the detailed methods and products that we have available down here, but if you just keep all the plaque off and you flush out the pockets - if you have started to have gum tissue disease, then you need to use an oral irrigator such as a Via Dent (now Via jet)3 unit and there’re some others available on the market these days. If you have the early gum disease or slightly more advanced gum disease, then you need an oral irrigator.5 A brush and floss or dental tape is not enough, then. We can go into some of these things in more detail. That’s number six.
Number seven is that typical factor, that all of us have had some contact with at sometime in our lives, called money. Now, is there anyone here today that who at some time or another in their life has not been motivated by money? That you are so pure that you have never said that, “Well if I do it this way, I’ll earn a little more money, or if I sell more of this, I make more money or if I get a better job, I make more money.” So obviously, we have at a given time and place all of us have been motivated by this factor we call money. Now, your motivation is very simply this: You can save yourself a lot of money, and if you have children you can save yourself even more money. Because children’s dentistry is very expensive, including by the way, orthodontics and a large amount of the orthodontics that’s done in this country could easily have been headed off by a conscientious dentist looking at the space and growth and development at the time the child is six or seven and maybe removing some teeth or simple little space maintainers, or whatever at an early age, heading off a comprehensive orthodontic problem later in life. In fact, we have a little pamphlet; we’ve got dozens and dozens of pamphlets. We have one that’s called, ‘Saving Orthodontic Dollars.’ All of our pamphlets are available to anybody that wants them by just sending us a self-address, stamped, envelope to the address I gave earlier. If you have a problem with root canals, or you’re questioning the expensive orthodontics or many of the other things, gum surgery, just write in and say, “Do you have a message that will help me understand this new frame of reference and this new approach that you’re talking about.” 4
Now the foregoing equation that I talked about in the previous steps, ‘knowledge and action,’ you see, once the people have the knowledge, once they gain the necessary knowledge, very few people, then, lack the motivation to take action. The reason that we don’t have more action along these lines is very simply that the public doesn’t have the knowledge. That’s why the dentist that I quoted, you know, from the Wall Street Journal, was saying, “Well, the dummies simply won’t do it!” Ok, they can’t if they don’t understand it or don’t know about it. So, it has occurred to me, I guess, that whatever else I do on the face of this earth between here and the ‘happy hunting ground,’ is that I must help to spread the knowledge and I have thousands of people write to me, they send me articles, clippings… I relate to people in any way that’s possibly, some of my friends call me the Ann Landers of the dental world. I will answer questions as best I can. I sometimes can’t answer them all. So you have the seven steps that I wished to cover. My watch says 6 p.m. I realize that we started just a few minutes late. Now I’ve covered these seven steps and I’ll be here for just a few more minutes to answer any questions. If you need to go to a meeting or something, please feel free to go.
(inaudible audience question)
A: You can brush as many times a day as you like. You’re not going to hurt yourself if you’re doing it properly.
Q: How about mercury and silver fillings?
A: We don’t use silver fillings anymore. The mercury is dangerous.
(End of tape.)
1 The address given on the tape is no longer valid. You may now contact OraMedia at PO Box 70607, Myrtle Beach, SC 29572, www.mizar5.com or call or write:
1-843-278-0267 or firstname.lastname@example.org .
2 To our knowledge, Zerolube is no longer available. It was originally used for dry mouth conditions. For this purpose, we suggest ‘Biotene’ mouth rinse, available through most pharmacies. For the purpose of getting more calcium and phosphorus into the body and into the saliva, we recommend a good mineral supplement and offer the ‘Liquid Naturals’ brand at www.mizar5.com/products.htm .
3 We currently offer the ‘Via jet PRO’ oral irrigator due to its ability to be adapted with a cannula tip for cleaning deeper pockets. www.mizar5.com/viajet.htm .
4 Please read the opening statements at www.mizar5.com/omedia2.htm .
5 Which Irrigator Is Right For You? www.mizar5.com/whichirrigator.htm
Editor’s Note: I got involved with the Oramedics program after reading an interview with Dr. Nara in a 1979 issue of Mother Earth News (read this interview at www.mizar5.com/menews.htm ). After years of practicing better oral health and having moved back to the quieter Elmira, NY area from New York City in 1996, I wrote to Bob & Ruth Nara in order to get some new materials, only to find that they had retired from practice. In letters and conversations that followed, I decided to publish what I could about Dr. Nara and Oramedics on the internet. I requested materials from them and not long afterward, several cartons packed with books and pamphlets written by Dr. Nara appeared on my doorstep. I learned some HTML and got much of his works online.
Shortly afterward, interested people started writing and asking where they could buy oral irrigators, cannula tips, good mouth rinses, etc., etc. and I decided to make some of these things also available online:
By far, the most important of all the tools we have available, however, is Dr. Nara’s message – these seven factors:
2. Frame of Reference
5. Understanding the biological balance
6. Taking Action
If you understand these factors and apply them (take action) you have no choice
but to eliminate the cause of decay in your mouth, thereby saving your teeth and
keeping them healthy for life. Not only will you save your teeth, you might also
save your life (see www.mizar5.com/killing.htm ). Dr. Nara wrote two books which expound on the message of these 7 factors or principles. Should you be dedicated to gaining more detailed knowledge of how these principles apply to the future of your (and your family’s) oral health, study ‘Money by the Mouthful’ and ‘How to Become Dentally Self Sufficient,’ both available online at: www.mizar5.com/mm.html . Aside from that, we have provided a great deal of additional information on teeth, gums and overall oral health at www.mizar5.com .
Dr. and Ruth Nara are two of the most interesting, intelligent and practical people I have ever personally come to know. They have developed, applied and taught others on the use of these factors. How can you know they work? Well, if you can apply them and achieve the desired result, then they work. The key is ‘application’ and changing your ‘frame of reference’ about what you ‘know’ about oral health. Personally, I am 50, still have all of my teeth and never have had root canals, surgery, caps, scaling, or on and on, other than the few fillings I got as a child before coming into this knowledge.
Not only can YOU have a profound effect on your oral health, but if you view these ‘factors’ as ‘principles,’ remove a word here and there, you might come up with principles you could apply in other areas of your life – not too dissimilar to those taught by the very successful and inspiring Dale Carnegie, Napoleon Hill, Anthony Robbins, etc. These folks are all cut from the same cloth and it is well worth your time getting to know them. They live(d) by proven principles of doing what works – operating on habits of ‘action’ – not settling for being victims of fear, inhibition or misinformation.
I wish you success not only with your oral health, but in all areas leading to a happy, fulfilling and productive life.