Wednesday, November 17, 2010

I'm Reversing My Gum Disease Successfully

I reversed my gum disease successfully in 32 months by swishing frequently with water and cleaning once daily with a sonic toothbrush (Philips Sonicare) and a water flosser (Water Pik) before an intentional nightly fast. (2012 update: my new dentist pronounced me problem-free on December 10.)

In the 1990's at my first visit to Mountain View Family Dentistry at University Drive and Lindsay Road in Mesa, Arizona, I was told sternly that I was infected with advancing gum disease, and I was required to brush, floss, and rinse with Listerine after every meal, followed by no intake for 1/2 hour afterward. Never in my life had I flossed my teeth regularly, nor had I ever been a diligent brusher, but I served my sentence, and at the following examination, I was told my condition had improved.

Fast forward to April 6, 2010 at Bright Now! Dental at Greenfield Road and Baseline Road in Gilbert Arizona. I listened as the periodontal pocket depths were read one by one around my mouth, and I was alarmed to hear "6" fourteen times and "7" once. I had periodontal gum disease pockets 7 millimeters deep. That is over 1/4" deep!

For a few years I had been waiting for an excuse to fast for several days. The results of that dental exam alarmed me so much that I got on the internet to research gum disease cures, and bought that very day a Philips Sonicare toothbrush and a Water Pik water flosser and began preparing for a long water fast (fasting is a technical subject and a lost art not to be undertaken lightly; I had studied fasting for a few years).

My internet research on gum disease cures didn't specify fasting, but I was previously interested in fasting, and I knew it was helpful for all kinds of infections and diseases. What my research prompted me to do was buy a Water Pik and use bleach in it for a while based on the recommendations at http://www.periodontaldiseasetreatmentguide.com/ that were allegedly published by the American Academy of Periodontology in 2004. Also based on that guide I bought some Stimudent toothpicks.

My fast lasted 12 days. By the end of it I had zero acne and zero ear infection symptoms. So it's likely my gum disease was also severely weakened.

After my fast, my oral hygiene has mainly consisted of using the Philips Sonicare brush and the Water Pik (sometimes with diluted Listerine in the reservoir) once daily before an intentional nightly fast. I have had two exams since April 6, At the most recent exam the worst readings were fifteen "4"s and four "5"s. That's improvement! (December 2011 update: fifteen "4"s and one "5") (December 2012 update: "no problems" and no charge for periodontal cleaning) I'll discuss the three components of my routine below:

Philips Sonicare toothbrush


The Philips Sonicare toothbrush was recommended by my dentist. It replaced the Braun Oral B Sonic Complete brush I was using previously. I rock it around to find and brush or rock gently with particular attention to the areas of maximum sensitivity around my teeth.  This is not an endorsement for the Philips Sonicare toothbrush or even for sonic toothbrushes in general.  It's merely a report of what I did.  But I believe brushing for two minutes was a key part of my healing, and I believe good results were easier with a sonic brush.

Water Pik


I use the Water Pik on about 1 or 2 power (out of ten), the minimum that will force water into my gums. I try to remember it is an irrigator, not a sandblaster. I use the nozzle that has a flexible needle-nose tip or the smallest glass nozzle to push down between teeth and gum. After I eat and brush, the Water Pik invariably flushes out additional seeds and bits of food. When I brush and water floss properly and regularly, I have no bad morning breath. Sometimes I follow the water flossing with a Hydrogen Peroxide or Listerine rinse.

Intentional Nightly Fast

Not just for oral hygiene, to reverse my gum disease, but for overall good health, I do my best to prolong my nightly fast between my water flossing and my breakfast. It's very reasonable to have a customary fast of 12 hours or more with nothing but plentiful water consumption. I have to confess I often feel so nice with my clean morning teeth and stomach that I don't eat until noon, prolonging my nightly fast for as much as 18 hours. Even so, I don't doubt a customary 12-hour fast (say from 6:00 to 6:00) would be effective for my mouth hygiene as well as my general health.

Swishing

Throughout the day, I swished water through my teeth vigorously and frequently, especially after any snacks or meals.  See also my recent experience with Oil Pulling.

Summary, I have in 8 months reduced my periodontitis from fourteen 6-mm pockets and one 7-mm pocket to fifteen 4-mm pockets and four 5-mm pockets (December 2011 update: fifteen "4"s and one "5") (December 2012 update: "no problems" and no charge for periodontal cleaning) by beginning with a 12-day water fast (I happened to have the necessary knowledge) and maintaining with a nightly sonic brushing, water flossing, and 12-hour or longer fast.

Now for a conscientious plea:  Would you please consider moving all your money including your retirement from stocks and banks to a credit union?  It matters.

195 comments:

Christopher Fugitt said...

I find the main thing about the Philips Sonicare toothbrush is making me brush for a set duration. Without it I'm sure I wouldn't be brushing for as long.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

I agree with that. I watched a little documentary where they asked people on the street to demonstrate how they brushed their teeth, and the average person was "finished" much more quickly than is recommended.

On the other hand, now that I am a bit older, I usually find that the brush is ready to quit before I am. I try not to go overboard, but I like to take my time and give attention to all the prime infection locations as guided by copy of my examination chart.

Anonymous said...

Have you tried giving up the flouride and traditional mouthwash,people are using bakingsoda aluminium free variety and mouthwashing with 3% hydrogen peroxide followed by oil pulling which seems to work for so many people in cleaning the plaque pockets out and closing up the gaps.
just my 5 cents.google it.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Lately I've been using hydrogen peroxide rather than alcohol as mouthwash at the suggestion of my dentist. It seems to work also.

I've never heard of oil pulling. I researched it and it looks interesting.

Anonymous said...

You missed out Te-pe brushes - these are essential and by soaking them in hydrogen peroxide you can minimise the amount of disinfectant used. Likely you fasting has little to do with reducing pockets, and the root planing treatment did the trick.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

I have received no root planing treatment, and no new professional treatment at all; that is out of the discussion. What we know is 1) I fasted 12 days and I started fasting better at night, 2) I started faithfully cleaning before the nightly fast with sonic brush and waterpik, and 3) the pockets improved significantly. I am curious why you would opine that fasting has little to do with the improvement. Can you explain why you say it in light of the clarification that there was no new professional treatment?

Billy Butcher said...

Hey Thomas, thanks for the blog post. I recently had a stressful 3 months and was not diligent with my brushing. So I went to the dentist for my usual 3 month cleaning and she did not want to do the cleaning. There were 3-4 6 mm pockets and some 4-5's. As a whole I saw that about every tooth went down in score the bad direction. My dentist recommends a laser planing and scaling method called LANAP. But I'm just going to try being diligent with my Sonicare Pro, Waterpik and Listerine and see what happens.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Billy, I would love to hear from you again around Christmas. It's amazing, isn't it, how all of life is interrelated--your spirituality, emotional/mental, and physical? Those pockets tell the story of an out-of-balance few months, don't they?

Tom

Moni Luv said...

I just went to the Dentist after many years of avoiding it. I have a family history of gum disease and perhaps I feared the inevitable. After a few days of pain, I went and heard that yes, I am there. 6's and even higher in the back part of my mouth. I'm researching the brushes, but there are so many models out there? Ideas? Suggestions?

Thomas Gail Haws said...

I'm pretty sure that the exact brand of sonic brush you buy is of minor importance compared to making the spiritual/emotional changes in your life necessary to go to bed every single night with clean teeth and to rinse with water throughout the day. This is not spiritually trivial.

I had an Oral-B sonic complete that I was very happy with. My recent dentist suggested he prefered the Philips sonicare, so I switched to that, and I am very happy with it also. Either one would do the job, I think.

The Waterpik nearly always removes bits of food I was unaware of hidden deep in my gums, so I think that of any possible investment, it is the most important, though simple lengthy and repeated swishing with sips of water from a cup you are able to keep at your side is a close substitute.

Hydrogen peroxide is super cheap and effective as the last step before the nightly fast, and it feels great to wake up with inoffensive breath.

Shannon O'keefe said...

I just came from the dentist...
Was told that I have gum disease and 6 wisdom teeth that need to be pulled at least one of which is decayed.
I found the information here very timely and I am going to start immediately.
I am interested in am interested in completing the fast. Can you please tell me how you did it. I am in a great deal of pain and I do not want to have any teeth extracted. In addition, I have been studying how to reverse decay; i believe wholeheartedly in the natural healing systems that the body innately has in place. So please any information you can share, I am all ears. Thank You so very much!

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Hi, Shannon. I'm sorry to hear about your pain, though I guess the wakeup call may be a good thing, huh? I've heard some pretty amazing stories about tooth healing through fasting.

The best things I can tell you about fasting are:

1. Herbert Shelton is the father of modern fasting, and the "Natural Hygienists" are the modern doctors who use fasting. I like Paul Goldberg especially.

2. In fasting, knowing how to gently end a fast and getting some reassuring idea of what's going to happen in the fast are the most important things. Start with Quickfasting online by Nathaniel Bronner and Youtube videos by Michele Gingras (yogayak) to get a feel for it.

3. It's nigh unto impossible to fast "too long" (there's even that lady on Youtube who fasted three closely spaced 40-dayers; yikes!). Three weeks is a "full cleanse", and six weeks is a "complete fast". But even a few days is helpful spiritually and physically. Listen and observe, and you will lknow what to do.

4. Shelton says anything besides drinking water and resting is counterproductive, so keep it simple.

5. Keep mum about your fast until afterward; it just worries your loved ones and colleagues.

I hope you'll come back and tell me how it goes.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Oh, p.s. Shannon, as far as my fasting goes, check out the water fasting link on the right side of my blog under Themes. And remember, Benjamin Franklin said "The best of all medicines is resting and fasting."

Thomas Gail Haws said...

p.p.s. I found a really good introduction to fasting here: http://www.allaboutfasting.com/types-of-fasting.html

Anonymous said...

A low carb diet can also improve gum disease. There are numerous testimonials on low carb websites about people having improved gum health after being on a low carb diet.

Clearly, carbohydrates are bad news for our mouths and should be avoided, especially for those with a history of or worsening gum disease. All carbs contain sugars in different forms, whether they be in fruit, wheat, or starchy foods. It's best to avoid them completely, as they are not necessary for human health, and if your gums have improved after diligent brushing/flossing and even fasting, why take a chance on returning to more disease by ingesting carbs?

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Anonymous, your comment is an interesting contribution even if it was a bit extreme for you to include the statement, "It's best to avoid them completely, as they are not necessary for human health."

What do you mean by "carbohydrates"? Do you mean any form and any quantity of energy giving molecule other than fats and proteins? Do you mean certain foods high in carbohydrates? Do you mean refined carbohydrates? Do you mean sugars? Specifically what are you suggesting "it's best" to never ever eat?

Anonymous said...

Sorry, to clarify what I mean by carbs is anything above induction-level carbs as described by Dr. Atkins. So green leafies and many low-calorie non-starchy veggies would be fine. This is actually the only level of carbs I eat.

Not only does it help keep weight off, it doesn't have the calorie density/sugar density that the other veggies and fruits do.

And, no, there is no need to ingest large amounts of carbs unless you are a very active athlete or have a very physically demanding job.

Even then, I would refer you to Phinney and Volek's book, "The Art & Science of Low Carbohydrate Living," for more information.

Their newest book is "The Art & Science of Low Carbohydrate Performance," debunking the myth that carbs are necessary for physical activity.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

If I understand correctly, abstaining from carbohydrates induces a fasting-like state, which can, I guess, sometimes be a good thing, even for those of us who could stand to gain a few pounds. :-) Personal scientific experimentation can be helpful, I know. Luckily, my experimentation has improved my gum health, and keeping carbohydrates (usually with everything else) out of my mouth periodically is a part of that success, no doubt.

ruth said...

thank you!
your blog helped me finish a three-day fast.

and the gum recession seemed to have marginally decreased, after this.

but i found the first fast tough, and lost weight and generally looked exhausted...
(even though i felt ok)

i also read this link to keep me egged on and at it...

http://www.e-reading.by/bookreader.php/149860/The_Miracle_of_Fasting.pdf

and i am trying to commit to some long term fasting programme...
to promote gum health and general STOP worrying about gum recession!

so could you update about your routine and gum health to keep me motivated?

thanks

ruth

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Thanks, Ruth, for letting me know my sharing inspired you. And thanks for inspiring me to make appointments for the family with our new dentist. I'll let you know how my numbers come in as soon as I get them. For the moment I can tell you every once in a while I do a double take in the mirror at my incredibly pink gums! I even ask my kids, "Don't these gums look awesome?!?" I still carry my water with me everywhere I go to swish after every snack. And I still sometimes fast a whole day, though it's been a while since I've fasted more than that (I'm about due for a longer one).

ruth said...

i kept checking to see if you had replied...

lol @ your comment to your kids! amazing recovery! i am totally heartened!
if you look at the other stuff on the internet, there's only talk of surgery and other terribly depressing stuff.


we dont get a pik where we live, i tried googling it but sadly no.

do you think a bi-weekly water fast will help speed up my case?
(i also have a long and painful history with dentists and dentistry)

i cant do a long fast like you have done


any other pointers you have to give, i'd be grateful

Thomas Gail Haws said...

:-) Ruth

WATERPIK
Hmm. No water pik? Waterpik equals flossing and or swishing, I think. If I couldn't find a Water Pik, I would swish a lot after every snack (which I do anyway). Then before the nightly fast, I'd floss, then swish especially long (finishing with hydrogen peroxide or Listerine) after brushing. Listerine has sometimes claimed that swishing with Listerine is as effective as flossing.

FASTING
I wouldn't worry too much about the longer fasts. I think that achieving near 100% compliance on the after-snack swishing and the teeth cleaning routine before the nightly fast is the number one factor. The way I think of it is, "On the average week, how many hours do my teeth/gums spend with food particles on/in them? On the average day, how many hours do my teeth and gums spend totally clean (nightly fast)? On the average week, what is the longest delay I allowed without swishing thoroughly, and without my complete cleaning?"

BONUS BONES
Did you know that your bones have a way to regrow as your gume disease heals? It's a bit unsightly (though hidden), but as healing progresses bony growths appear under the gums in the areas around the roots of your teeth, strengthening your teeth. I read about this, and it appears to have happened in my mouth. Some time I'll need to photograph these things on Youtube.

ruth said...

thank you...

as you may have noted,

i take your blog and the points you make VERY seriously.
1. so i have stopped eating after 6 pm. (that means i get a 12 hour or more break from food)

2. i am now taking swishing to warpath levels.

3. i have totally lost faith in toothpaste. am going the toothpowder way. i also am doing Oilpulling (also on warfooting)

any inspiring words and vibes my way are always welcome...

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Ruth,

Thanks for the kind words. I think you are combining your intuitive wisdom with the inspiration of my success and making some very good decisions. For example, you have honed in on the two most practical and meaningful lifestyle changes: nightly fast (assuming you are starting it with a good cleaning) and swishing.

Particularly, the swishing to warlike levels is awesome because it's really effective throughout the day and it also implies you are keeping a water cup/bottle with you at all times and pausing your busy-ness.

I don't know a lot about toothpaste anymore. It may be good stuff, but I haven't used any in a long time. Oil pulling may also be great. I tried it, but it just didn't jive for me. If you have good success with it, I hope you'll let me know.

Can I ask you some questions?

1. What are the main spiritual/emotional challenges to starting your nightly fast at 6:00?

2. What are the main spiritual/emotional challenges to warlike water swishing?

3. Can you tell any spiritual/emotional benefits of starting your nightly fast at 6:00?

4. Can you tell any spiritual/emotional benefits of regular and frequent swishing?

5. Have you noticed tiny improvements in pain, bleeding, color, breath smell?

ruth said...

i'll answer the questions as i understand them...

1. this is very easy. i breathe a sigh of relief at around 6 pm. there's far less work to do -- in terms of cooking, preparing, eating etc, because my quiet time for my body has begun...

2. it's when i have company, that it becomes a little difficult, but this is also an easy method to weave into my life

3. i met a family (they are Jains) and they've been doing this all their life... (stopping eating and even drinking water after 6 pm) so inspiration is all around even when you dont go looking for it. i think this is a change for the rest of my life...:-)


4. mouth feels cleaner, and i feel i am following someone (namely you) who has done this before and has WON! and therefore so can I!!

5. my mouth feels very fresh. my mum remearked that my teeth looked whiter, just yesterday.

well, i am lacto-vegan to start with. and i dont like junk food.
but on the days i water fast --24 or 26 hours i THINK i notice a slight slight lessening in the degree of recession, which only seems increase and come back when i begin to feed again.

it is a spiritual process... there's a sense of witnessing what i am doing, and trying to be a litte detached, and trying to win over odds and emulate a success story, like yours

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Thanks a million for sharing a little bit of your wonderful story.

Are you certain you can't locate an oral irrigator? Grapefruit seed extract or plain old bleach(though my dentist was appalled at its mention) may help . See http://periodontaldiseasetreatmentguide.com/aptpfv.htm.

If your disease is advanced enough, a long fast may be necessary. Like Jesus said, some devils only go out with a lot of fasting. Play it by ear and the right action will be revealed.

ruth said...

thank you for your patient ear...

i couldnt locate an irrigator, but i think i could up the post-meal rinse

(btw, i have already adopted your slogan "have you seen such healthy gums?" i say it in my mind in order to pre-empt my cure:-)

i located your link... i will look for grapefruit seed extract in my area.

today i am on a dry fast, and i can see the recession lessening...

i am very hopeful of the future.

if i may make a request: if you could do a post on the top 10 things a person should do to reverse recession, it may be helpful to the other troubled souls in the www..

many, many thanks:-)

Thomas Gail Haws said...

I haven't tried grapefruit seed extract. And I am certain it is many many times more expensive than plain old bleach. On the other hand, there must be something special about it. I did buy some povidone iodine to irrigate with, but I didn't end up using it much either. I guess I'm a pretty simple guy. My main staples have been just faithful application of water, sonic brush, irrigator, and nightly fast.

Hypothesizing a little, I would guess it might be effective to alternate periodically between various germicides. I might use each one for a week or a month, then switch to another: bleach, povidone iodine, Grapefruit Seed Extract. That could help keep the GSE expense down.

Tomorrow I have an appointment with a new dentist. Fingers crossed for more great news after 12 months!

I will try to make today a gum disease story sharing day. Thanks again for your kind words.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

OK, here is my best shot at a top ten list. :-)

http://tomsthird.blogspot.com/2012/12/top-ten-actions-to-reverse-gum-recession.html

And here's a video of the bone regrowth.

http://tomsthird.blogspot.com/2012/12/gum-disease-reversal-bone-regrowth.html

AtlantaJJ said...

This is such a great blog post on multiple levels. I never thought about the amount of time I keep food in my mouth as detrimental to my gum health. I have a few habits that need to change. I had about 3 or 4 4mm pockets this past exam. I think I might purchase my self a WaterPik for Christmas! :)

I'm also interested in fasting for spiritual reasons.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Those are very kinds words. Thank you.

Victoria said...

Hi Thomas,
Great blog! I was told at a recent dental visit that I have advanced periodontal disease, though I have been diligently flossing and using a Sonicare for years and years. I just purchased a Waterpik, and I am very eager to reverse the gum disease without planing. I read in your comments that you are going to a new dentist- I'm just curious, with how appalling a "natural" approach may be to some dentists, what kinds of reactions have you received? I almost feel like switching dentists so that I can get an honest reading, and not a potentially biased one for that I sign up for very expensive perio treatment. Thanks for your thoughts! Best, Victoria

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Victoria, I do think there can be a big difference in the attitude of dentists. I've been to a lot of (six) dentists in the past fifteen years. I don't think it would hurt for you to try another one.

I never got a lot of reaction in sharing about my fasting and Waterpik treatment. I did get a negative reaction about putting bleach in my Waterpik.

Maybe drinking lots of plain water including rinsing after every snack would make a difference for you.

Jen said...

Thanks for this information - its very useful. Like other people here I have just been told by my dentist that I have advanced gum and bone recession and have been referred to a private peridontist asap. I want to do what I can to help my teeth and gums so am looking at this but am concerned about cost implications and healing things as naturally as I can too. I already floss 3 x a day but am looking at buying a Sonicare, fasting at least 12 hrs a night (I usually do but will keep a closer eye on doing that) and switching to mainly drinking water (cutting down on caffeine etc too). I am a vegetarian and as you said, being more aware when food has been in my mouth and dealing with it. I am interested in the spiritual implications too and though I felt very fearful when I was told the news, am now seeing there is an opportunity to also develop heathier habits on many levels. thanks again -- it's good to know I'm not alone!
Jen

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Thanks, Jen, for dropping by. I went over for a look at your blog. Very nice. It's a delight to connect in the big web that in my more Mormon moments I like to think of as The Church of the Firstborn, or in my more universalist (or transcendentalist or UU) moments, as the collective spiritual consciousness.

Anonymous said...

So I happen to find this blog, and I can tell you this is very inspiring. Every since I was a kid I kinda disliked the all process of maintaining healthy teeth and gums. For almost eight years I took little care of my teeth with also avoiding the dentist. Now eight years later I have started to have two of my bottom tooth's receding( so far it seens like 3mm) and also some inflammation. To be honest this should have been way worse for eight years of denying the right care(18years old now), but had luck on my side. I now have been taking serious care of my teeth and hopefully everything gets better( going to dentist twice a year also with braces in as well which is more motivation on top) and I found allof your methods are the best advice I seen so far. I do all that, but the fasting, but I also pretty much got rid of any junk food, fast food, any soda in my diet and I find my self to feel better during the day physically and mentally. I'm also hoping for improvements like you successfully achieved without any painful steps and gladly thank you for telling your story for the rest to see.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Hey, thanks! That's great. If you remember me, stop by with your success story someday in a few years.

Robin said...

Thank you for your story and helpful suggestions. Have you heard anything about Bee Propolis in reversing gum disease? I recently started using a Sonicare and have been flossing and doing the Listerene rinse for awhile. I have 2 deep pockets, 6's, maybe a 7and DO NOT want to lose the teeth, G-d forbid. I was shocked when a dentist mentioned that possibility and suggested I get to periodontist ASAP. I don't have intense pain and feel the Sonicare strengthening my gums. Should I run to the periodontist or continue treatment on my own? Have you had a dentist scare you that you might lose teeth? Thanks for your encouragement!

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Hi, Robin. I'm a really simple guy. I haven't heard of Bee Propolis, but I have heard of lots of other good stuff for gum care. I gravitate to the cheap and simple and natural. So to me, keeping a water cup by my side, sipping and swishing "all the time" to the point of tongue exhaustion, brushing for a couple of minutes nightly, irrigating, and then using some inexpensive germicide/debriding agent like straight hydrogen peroxide before my nightly fast just fits. And voila, it worked!

I had a dentist who startled me with his entrance survey: "Do you want to keep your teeth?" I became very aware of the possibility of losing my teeth, and the importance of reversing my gum disease. That's why I got so alarmed a couple of years ago and did the 12-day water fast and bought the WaterPik. You bet. What a scare!

shawn57187 said...

Thomas, have you considered a gum graft to thicken / replace the receded gum tissue?

I've had two procedures with AlloDerm and its made a huge difference to the appearance of my mouth. I'm hoping to get more as I can afford them.

I am also suffering from gum recession and periodontal disease. I have a immune dysfunction called MPO deficiency that makes me especially prone to bacterial infections. By age 18 I was already experiencing gum loss and its been a constant battle keeping my mouth healthy over the proceeding decade.

I'm not currently using a waterpik but I'm definitely going to make the investment. Although I've had grafting to the aesthetically obvious recession, I still have gaps between my teeth that trap food and become irritated. Hopefully this will help! :)

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Shawn, I never felt like my gum tissue was receded excessively except because of the pocket depths the dentist was reading. Maybe I'm just clueless. My main concern was bone loss. And it appears my body has naturally regrown some of the bone (see my other post and my video). I never considered a graft. If I can stay away from the doctor, I'm all for it!

Tom

Anonymous said...

I was told by my dentist two years ago that he would not be able to save some of my teeth even with surgery and he recommended extraction.

I panicked and started researching alternative methods to save my teeth.

I experimented with more than a couple dozen different herbs and supplements, cleaning methods, oil pulling, etc.

Out of those, I have found two that really stood out and that have completely reversed my gum disease. Today, my gums are light pink, thicker, firm, tight pockets and teeth, zero inflamation, no bleeding, and no redness or sensitivity.

The two supplements are astaxanthin and resveratrol.

Each night before I go to sleep I bite down on one 3mg capsule of astaxanthin and swoosh it around in my mouth. I have only used the brand Bio-Astin, so I am not sure of the efficacy of other brands or dosage.

The evidence with this supplememt is anecdotal, but for myself the results have been amazing. Of the two, I believe that astaxanin has delivered the primary results.

There is ample evidence that resveratrol is absorbed best transmucosally. I open up a capsule and swoosh the powder contents aound in my mouth for a couple of minutes before I swallow the excess. I do this each morning after I have finished brushing my teeth. These two links indicate that resveratrol inhibits the bacteria that causes periodontal disease, and also prevents associated bone loss.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23489233

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19407977

Thomas Gail Haws said...

That is really interesting. I tend toward more natural methods (if you can call a Waterpik, a sonic brush, and hydrogen peroxide "natural" :-D), but it sounds like you found a way to control the bacteria. So are you now experiencing bone regrowth?

Ann said...

Hey Thomas, thanks for sharing the great information. I got some questions and hope you can help me with that.

1. How much hydrogen should be added for water floss? I heard about people would like to use salt water for raines and irrigation, do you have any experience on salt water?

2.Do you have any information on nutrition (related to teeth, bone loss and regrow)?

I find using my own sylvia to gargle after finishing all cleanse is good. And also gum massage. I watched a TV news last year about a gentlemen in his eighty (locates in a rural area in China) grew 17 teeth back after losing his teeth 10 years ago. I think It couldn't be false. It board cast as a formal TV news and the interviews with the gentlemen, dentist on site. I guess keep up the hygiene, nutrition, exercise, less pollution helps the body to regenerate.
Thanks and hope to hear from you.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Hi, Ann.

1. I don't have any personal knowledge about salt. I use straight hydrogen peroxide rinse after water flossing.

2. I also don't have any authoritative personal knowledge about nutrition and regrowth other than to AVOID INDUSTRIAL, PROCESSED, STALE FOOD (oil, sugar, flour, shortening, unpronounceables, etc.) and go with as much traditional and colorful food as possible. I agree with you regarding what helps the body regenerate. I guess just in general stay trim and in good health. Right?

Anonymous said...

This is interesting. Especially the bone growth as two dentists have told me that the bone will not regrow.

The 12 hour fast you speak of makes a huge amount of sense as it gives the gums 12 hours to regenerate. I am gonna follow your regime.

Thanks

Thomas Gail Haws said...

It would be interesting to have your dentists comment on the photographs at Youtube of the growths apparent in my mouth. I'd be interested to hear their opinion. Maybe I'm just a mutant after all!

Anonymous said...

How to choose a water pic? How to know which is the best one?...

Thomas Gail Haws said...

I know they aren't cheap and that you want to buy one that will last a long time and do a good job. I don't know what to tell you other than that I simply picked up a WaterPik with no further thought. It has served me well with no trouble at all.

Jen said...

I was told 8yrs ago that I had 4 pockets ranging from 4-7. I'm a vegetarian, do not drink sodas and rarely eat candy/junk...and have always taken care of my teeth although not an avid flosser. A few years ago I went to purchase a waterpik and they were out...never went back. I have a few fillings one that I think is coming out so I have an appointment next week. I go through waves of oil pulling and it helps tremendously. I hadn't seen my dentist in 5yrs and they couldn't believe how well my teeth look. I still need to reverse,rebuild and revitalize my teeth and gums and do away with the perio disease. Thankfully I'm not in any pain, little to no swelling and almost no bleeding. Thank you for your site, I will go immediately today and get a waterpik and start using it right away. Do you just swish with the peroxide or place it in the waterpik...if so how much do you put in there.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

It sounds like oil pulling is worth trying. Do you like to do it, or is it kind of a drag?

As my gum disease has healed and my morning breath has gotten clean, I have mostly phased out my use of germicides. I only use them now at night if I notice offensive morning breath. When I was using the germicides, I would most often use peroxide by swishing after irrigating with the WaterPik. When I used bleach, I would put 1/2 teaspoon or so in the WaterPik reservoir.

Jen said...

I don't mind the oil pulling. After I do it, when i floss....theres rarely anything on the floss and my teeth feel very clean and have whitened. In order to do it for the recommended 15min (also recommended on an empty stomach) I use a tbsp of organic sesame oil (unrefined) and swish while I hop in the shower..this way I stay busy and don't think about oil in my mouth, by the time I get out I'm done...I rinse my mouth then brush then floss.

I purchased my water pik this afternoon and used it for the first time...and liked it! My mouth feels clean! I will continue using it up until my appt next Wednesday and of course afterwards because I'm ready to put an end to this perio disease.

Becky Jo said...

Hi Thomas. I'm a home schooling mom of 5 that travels every week and after reading your post and a few of the comments above I'm left with a couple of questions. I'm too busy to read all of the posts to find my answers so would you mind answering these?: when you say "bleach" are you speaking of something like hydrogen peroxide? Also, will you explain what oil pulling is? I just went to the dentist today and was told that my pockets are sporadically very deep (8-10's with lots of 4's). She wants to extract 8 teeth! This evening the thought occurred to me to fast so I googled and found your blog.

Becky Jo said...

Hi Thomas, I'm a home schooling mother of 5 that travels weekly and after reading your post and a few of the comments that follow I'm left with a couple of questions. Since I'm too busy to read all of the comments I was wondering if you would be so kind as to answer my questions? 1. when you say you used bleach, what kind of bleach are you talking about? Hydrogen peroxide?? 2. what is oil pulling? Thanks so much!

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Hi, Becky Jo. Nightly fast is so important, and longer fasting can really help with deeper infections.

1. Don't tell your dentist, but by bleach I mean a little sodium hypochlorite in the WaterPik tank. I found that in a periodontal care document. I've only used it maybe a few dozen times. See #4 at this post.

2. I don't know much about oil pulling; I only tried it once, I think. You'd have to do more Google searching. Jen immediately above said she was using it. But then in her most recent comment today on another post she said that after using a WaterPik for once week her gums are noticeably pinker and her teeth are very clean. Maybe (?) oil pulling is good and a WaterPik is better? You have to get desperate enough to plunk $50 down for a WaterPik and $50 for a sonic brush.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Oops. Jen said she has used a WaterPik "for one week".

tina said...

Hi, Thomas your post looks interesting. I'm very desperate now since I noticed that two of my lower front teeth had shifted a little in the past week or so. My gum bleeds off and on since probably 5 years ago when I first noticed. I'm panicking when I noticed my teeth moved a bit to be honest. I'm very scared to go see the dentist so I might just try your method:( I'm not even 30:(

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Let me know how it goes, Tina. First your gums will get more pink and your teeth and morning breath will get cleaner. Eventually you can even grow some bone back to stabilize your teeth like in the video I posted to Youtube. If I were in your position, I would be so alarmed I would figure out how to do a fast of at least a couple of weeks. But if that's not possible, just start doing the rest. If your infection is slow to give up, you may need a longer fast.

tina said...

I've been using sonicare and listerine for years and brush my teeth so regularly. I guess I'll buy a waterpik today. I used hydrogen peroxide last night. I don't have bad breath so I don't know what's wrong with my gum. It's gum disease for sure though since the two teeth moved a bit..Sorry my thoughts are kinda jumping I am just so scared.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Thanks for the additional info, Tina. It sounds like you mainly need to add daytime swishing/rinsing and nightly WaterPik. Hard to know yet whether you need a fast, but if you were able to do a fast soon, it would seriously weaken the infection and probably give you other benefits.

I used to avoid drinking after meals because I had heard it was good not to dilute the meal with water. This prevented me from a key part of home care, which is to rinse well IMMEDIATELY after any caloric intake. Be sure you keep water with you at all times so you can swish and keep your gums rinsed out reasonably well at all times to supplement the deep irrigation you do to start your fast for the night.

About Listerine, a dentist of mine suggested I might be better of using a peroxide based mouthwash. I always loved Listerine, and I'm still not really against it, but I have moved to rely more on the mechanical cleaning with occasional supplementation of H2O2 hydrogen peroxide, especially if I have a lapse of rinsing or night care.

Becky Jo said...

Tom,
Last week I purchased my first Water Pik and Philips Sonicare toothbrush. Yesterday I bought some clove oil but am having a little trouble finding the sodium hypochlorite. Tomorrow I begin my 2-week fast. I did a 3-week water fast in 2007 for spiritual reasons and had great results. This time the reason for the fast is initially physical but will not leave out the spiritual aspect. I'm excited about reversing this disease that the experts say cannot be reversed. Thanks for your blog post and comments.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

I hope you'll let me know by Christmas how everything goes. By sodium hypochlorite I mean unscented grocery store bleach in the laundry and cleaning section of the store. It is 2% - 6% sodium hypochlorite by weight.

Jen said...

*Grapefruit seed extract

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Grapefruit Seed Extract. ??? You have my curiosity. I haven't tried it. Tell me about it. I do know that each germicide has its unique character. Hydrogen peroxide, for example, is a great "debriding agent" that eats away really well at tartar. So what about grapefruit seed extract?

Becky Jo said...

Husband bought Great Value Bleach that is 33% more concentrated. It's over 8% sodium hypochlorite. Should I use it?

Jen said...

Looks like the first part of my comment didn't post. I mentioned the last times I went in for a cleaning were 2005, 2009 & the beginning of this month. Before purchasing the waterpik I was oil pulling 2-3 times a week along with normal brushing and somewhat irregular flossing and each time there were basically very little to no plaque or tartar on my teeth. My teeth looked white, gums pink...I was once asked by a friend if I whitened my teeth. So oil pulling works! My pockets in 2009 were three 6's, two 5's, and three 3's...this month I was told two of my 6's were gone, one was now a 3...The 3's gone, I am now left with three 3's, one 4, one 5.
I've incorporated Thomas' regimen with using the waterpik with GSE in it, occasional peroxide, and listerine twice a day. When I go back in 4mos, I'll see what progress I have made.

Here's where I got the GSE info
http://www.periodontaldiseasetreatmentguide.com/

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Sure, but be sure you don't use too much. Why don't you try 1/2 tsp in 1 cup of water (3 ml in 250 ml water) to start with, then increase or decrease depending on how your mouth feels afterward.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

1. My comment above is in reply to Becky Jo. Also, I enjoyed your two blogs.

2. Tina, thanks so much for sharing additional info. I really found that periodontal guide useful back right before I started my 12-day water fast and my great 2 1/2 year gum healing journey in April 2010.

Becky Jo said...

Well, Tom, I've finished a 12-day fast (was gonna do 14 but felt like it was better for everyone (home schooling 4 kids) if I ate something. Finally read the perio link with the article written by the dentist you posted at the top of this and WOW! First thing I said after reading it was, "I KNEW it! I knew there were alternatives!" So thankful to have found your blog and I'll keep referring to it. Not sure if I'll follow the protocol in the aforementioned article or just continue to powerbrush, waterfloss, oil-pull, and swish. I know I probably need to go get the perio cleaning in the meantime at least. Thanks again!

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Wow! Twelve days is significant. Yeah, with kids and all, and not having a lot of extra weight to begin with, I know what you mean about feeling ready to end it.

It sounds like you will be better in no time as long as you remain faithful nightly and swish after your meals and snacks. Big congratulations!

Becky Jo said...

Question for you: I can't get a periodontal cleaning with my teeth as they are if I want to keep my teeth, that is. I have a tooth in the lower front that is mobile and if they did a perio cleaning the tooth would probably come out. So my question is, in your opinion am I wasting my time with the water flossing, swishing, and oil pulling if I haven't even had a professional cleaning first? (Another thought, I wonder if they could clean around that area, at LEAST?)

Thomas Gail Haws said...

I like your idea. Could you find a dentist/hygienist who would be willing to preserve the tooth? There's no guarantee you'll be able to re-stabilize it, but if you are faithful with keeping the infection out, there's a good chance healing can proceed, I would think. I'm not sure about the answer to your direct question about how important is the professional cleaning. That periodontal disease protocol I linked does definitely say to get one. If I were you, I would ask around all my local friends (or my insurance company) until I found a dentist I felt respected with. Then I would let that dentist clean my teeth with the understanding that I wanted them all left in and am changing my ways and beginning a new era of faithful home care.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Thanks to your testimonial, Becky Jo, I researched oil pulling again this morning, and I am going to try out ending my daily (nightly) fast by rinsing for 1/4 to 1/3 hour with coconut oil followed by a salt water rinse. Supposedly it's good not only for the mouth, but for general health. Here's a good blog entry Any other tips from your oil pulling experience?

Becky Jo said...

So! I'm having laser surgery (LANAP) on 2 quadrants (one side of my mouth) on Tuesday afternoon! This is supposed to be a quicker recovery and less invasive than traditional root planing. I thought I had a little more time to prepare for it was scheduled for the first week of March. The receptionist scheduled me to get one side of my mouth done on Tue and the other side on Thurs but she called back saying the doc didn't like the two days so close together...could I come in on Tue? I'll be researching to see if fasting might be a good idea immediately following the surgery. Also looking into supplements that encourage bone re-growth. Hope your Christmas was a merry one!

Thomas Gail Haws said...

So you have not lost the tooth? How have things gone since October? Thanks for the update, and please drop by again.

Anonymous said...

Hi,

I just wanted to say that I am very glad to have found your blog and am going to give your method a very good trial. I purchased the WaterPik system yesterday and have used it both yesterday as well as today with a bleach/water solution. In addition, I am also going to start the nightly fast, which in simplest terms, I am going to drink only water after my last meal (around 7-8 PM). It's not exactly what you're doing, but it is my start.

Some concerns:
1. The WaterPik system recommends to avoid the use of bleach - anything you can comment? I don't mind using it by any means, but just was curious.
2. The solution SHOULD smell and taste like bleach, correct? That was a little alarming for my first time, and I can taste trace amounts of the solution several minutes after application.
3. What pressure setting/pik combination do you use most frequently?
4. After using the WaterPik, did you also use oral rinses such as Peroxide or Listerine? I used both afterwards but don't plan to make it a habit.
5. When you filled the container with mouthwash, did you use 100% mouthwash or a diluted solution?

Sorry for the several questions, I'm certain I will have more, but I am really trying to get a grasp on this matter to reverse my gum disease as well prevent any future problems.

Thanks so much for sharing the wealth of information you have!

Branen

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Branen,

I like your plan, and it sounds like what I do. Don't forget the swishing during the day after you eat anything.

1. I did not know about the Waterpik instruction not to use bleach. Maybe we should contact Waterpik to find out the purpose of that restriction.

2. Yes, you can detect the bleach, and it leaves a faint feeling in your mouth. I think that it's important to keep the concentration very weak so you can barely detect it.

3. I use pressure 2 to 4. I avoid any pain whatsoever from the WaterPik.

4. Yes. I use rinse after the WaterPik, or at least I used to before my problem was solved. In the initial months, I would try to do that every night. You might try moving the bleach to an afterward rinse in rotation with Listerine and Peroxide. Your morning breath is the guide to what works best.

5. Since mouthwash is expensive, I used a dilute solution. Weak bleach is cheap and powerful. I will try to remember to talk to WaterPik. I hope you took the time to visit the link I have to the Periodontal Disease Treatment guidelines at http://periodontaldiseasetreatmentguide.com/aptpfv.htm

I look forward to hearing about your success. Best wishes.

Tom

Michael said...

Hi Tom, I am currently removing my lackluster habits of dental care. I didn't care for my teeth most of my life up to now, I'm 23. I would brush from time to time, here and there.I would go to the dentist sporadically over the years. This ignorance of oral care I obtained as a youngster is no more in my life. For the last 2 weeks I have cut out refined carbs / sugars / inflammatory foods. I have been brushing 2+ times a day and flossing throughout the day. My gums woke up to be pink this morning, They don't bleed like they did previously.

What is changing my ways is that I have a molar on the upper ride side of my mouth, that is in jeopardy. It might be extracted because of a failed root canal and infection that has resided within the roots. The infection is clsoe to my sinuses so the oral surgeon said that there maybe a 10% chance a Edodontist can save the tooth. So I have an appointment next week to see her and take my chance since it is a never go back type of decision.

It might get extracted and I will then have a dental implant inserted in it's place. I have a root canal that I need to be done on the left side of my mouth. Once the judgement has been made on the next move for my upper right molar, I will move on to taking care the left one and nipping it in the bud. However, How after these two procedures are done I want to make sure i can keep my mouth in tact. I don't want to lose teeth orhave anything bad happen to my gums or teeth. I want to love them, I want to take care of them, and treat them how they should be treated and Iwill.

I will schedule a appointment with the periodontist after the fate of my molar has been decided.

Is the pink color and bleedless gums a good sign for me? I've gotten two x rays done in 2 weeks from each other, my general dentist and oral surgeon did not comment on my gums... Or the state of my other teeth.

I'm not delusional for turning the ship around right? and having great dental health?

Thomas Gail Haws said...

What a great post, Michael! Of course turning the ship around and having great dental health is not delusional. Your pink gums are a bright and hopeful sign.

It may be too late to save your upper right molar. If I were in your shoes, I would make a last ditch effort to save the tooth with an emergency fast, but that may be too unfamiliar to you. Seemingly miraculous things can happen through fasting. I would postpone the dentist visit a few more weeks while I fasted in hopes of a dramatic healing of the tooth. But if fasting is too unknown to you, or if there is absolutely no way you can put your life on hold to save your tooth (your schedule vs. your tooth), I would suggest you rejoice in your improving health, continue your new habits as well as your education into body care (water, rest, simplicity, etc.), and call your lost tooth an expensive part of your education.

I hope I get the privilege of hearing from you how everything turns out before summer comes.

Michael said...

THanks for the response Tom. Unfortunately with school and work at the same time and never having tried prolonged fasting, It probably isn't a possibility for me. I'll go in to that edodontist appointment having come to terms with whatever needs to be done I guess... I just don't wait it to ever happen again... ever. I just want this occurrence to be my only lesson, because it sucks knowing I might have to do this soon...

If I keep up with the techniques you've mentioned ,such as waterpik,sonicare,brush+floss and perhaps investing into the hydrogen peroxide for mouth wash... Hell, even oil pulling eventually while practicing my new diet,

I can assume that my body should take care of me also and prevent this from happening again?

I wonder if my young age plays a part, if perhaps I didn't wait too long and it's better now than if I were 50 to start doing this...

Sorry for venting Tom, just a chap who thinks too much.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Heh. Thinking too much. Or saying everything you think. You are in good company.

I think that if your gums keep getting pink and your morning breath keeps getting clean, you will be fine from now on. Don't forget that peroxide is dirt cheap. And you may want to look into water fasting (see my posts for a start) in the event of a future problem.

Ry said...

Read the post and almost all comments afterward. I've put off treating this disease I've known about for about a year now. I've noticed my gums receding a lot now so I guess it's time to invest in that waterpik and sonic care tooth brush! I'm obviously concerned about losing my teeth but I don't feel I'm at that point yet where I need to worry about that. I don't think?

As far as fasting... Would a 3 day fast be plenty seeing that a 1-3 week fast wouldn't fit my schedule.

And bleach... I don't feel comfortable with that in my mouth. Do you think I could still achieve similar results without adding bleach to the equation?

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Ry, I don't think you need bleach. Try some of the other germicides I listed at number 4 here. A three-day fast will be helpful. Drink tons of water any time you feel hungry or uncomfortable or dissatisfied. Most importantly is your habitual rinsing and your nightly deep clean before your nightly fast. Your morning breath and your gum color should give you the feedback you need.

Wendy Peters said...

Tom, thank you for giving me hope. I have deep pockets on many teeth. I am too scared & poor to have gum grafts. I have many,many teeth with deep pockets. I am going to try your suggestion. My question is how and what makes the gums cover the pockets up again. Does the gums grow up to the tooth gum line.How do the gums improve? I am sorry for my stupidity. But I want to know what happens to the gum line so I know if my receding gums are improving. Thanks for answering my question. Wendy

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Wendy, as soon as you start giving your gums lots of clean time daily by swishing, irrigating, and fasting as I've shared, the gums will begin to re-adhere to the teeth. In the short term, you will know your program is working when your breath smells clean (even in the morning!) and your gums look pink. In the medium term, your pocket depths read at your dentist office will be less. In the long term, you will no longer be treated for gum disease. Don't get special treatment, but do continue to get exams once or twice yearly. Once you see your gums are better and a couple of years have passed and your pockets are all shallow, you may have to get a new dentist if your current one refuses to see that your condition is no longer as it once was.

Anonymous said...

So glad to stumble across this post.
I think I may have the beginning stages of gum disease. I noticed a while back that my bottom gums were really red. Admittedly, I don't brush nearly as often as I should. I'm a stay at home mom to a very quick and *ahem* adventurous one year old. It's mostly the two of us, as my husband is active duty army and we're stationed overseas. Help is minimal so my dental hygiene has really been lacking. I'm also currently 18 weeks pregnant. I know that hormones and increased blood flow/volume in pregnancy can greatly affect dental health, so I'm sure that's not helping my situation any.

Anyhow, I noticed the other day that the small tip pieces of my bottom gums (in between bottom front 4 teeth) are pulling away. I don't think they're receeding - it's just that those top pieces have detached. I'm absolutely terrified. To the point that I've been brushing like a mad woman since I noticed it and the worry is keeping me up at night. Not good for me, my son or the baby :( I'm doing what I can to sort out our dental insurance, but I'd have to be seen off post at a German practice - something I'm not too keen on. I guess my biggest question is how soon can I expect to see improvement with increased brushing, flossing and swishing? I cannot do the bleaching or fasting as I am pregnant, and I can't currently afford a Waterpik so it will be regular floss. I would just like to avoid a German dentist at all costs. The paperwork is a headache and there is a huge language barrier.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

A week or two should be enough to see and smell improvement. But you have to give your teeth and gums a very good break every single day.

You may not have considered it, but you fast every day. It's important to take advantage of this fast by cleaning and disinfecting your teeth
immediately after dinner and eating nothing but water until breakfast. Late night and midnight snacks are harmful.

I'm not sure why you are hesitant to rinse with bleach, but you can use other germicides I list at my Top Ten Actions for gum disease. Find one and use it.

Flossing is okay as a substitute for irrigation, but make sure you have extended rinsing/swishing with a water bottle (you can swallow if you want) after you leave the sink. Then finish with your germicide.

Brushing can be overdone, and can harm the gums. Consider reducing your brushing to once daily before your nightly fast.

I hope you will return and let me know how it goes or if you have any other questions.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

p.s. In your particular situation, swishing should be your secret weapon, because you can keep a water bottle with you while caring for your babies, and you can swish often while caring for them, chasing them, or nursing them. Swish creatively, persistently, and repeatedly.

veeresh said...

Hi thomas... :)

well recently have been to a dentist.. and found i have few pockets in my gums.. dint check the size exactly.. he just did a cleaning and gave h2o2 for cleaning.. and said they will get healed.. whthere they will be healed completely??

can you just guide me what can be done for better healing and fast covering of pockets?

Thomas Gail Haws said...

The best thing that can be done is to keep your teeth clean longer every day by using a combination of frequent swishing; nightly cleaning with brush, irrigator (or floss), and germicide (like H2O2); and nightly fasting (no midnight snacks). You should have pinker gums and cleaner morning breath within days to weeks. And you should be able to be dropped from periodontal treatment in a couple of years if you keep them clean most of the time every single day.

veeresh said...

dear tom..

by how many days will the pockets be covered...??? any rough ideas...?? hw many days did it take in your case??

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Veeresh, it will probably take several months before the pockets begin to close up. If you just saw the dentist and you plan to see the dentist again in six months, you can expect to have smaller pockets at your next visit. I suggest asking your dentist to email you a copy of your examination chart so you can compare your pockets between the two visits and get guidance and feedback about your care quality. If you have, for example, 2 7mm pockets, 6 6mm pockets, and 10 4-5 mm pockets, you can expect with good care to reduce that to something like or better than 1 7mm pocket, 5 6mm pockets, and 11 4-5mm pockets within 6 months.

veeresh said...

well tom.. i will get in touch with you if i do have any doubts regarding any issue.. hope that wont trouble you much... your review was awesome.!

Thomas Gail Haws said...

No problem, Veeresh. I do hope to hear back from you in several weeks or months when you start getting results.

Lisa said...

Thanks for generally offering your experience. Can you suggest how much hydrogen peroxide to add to the water resevoir of the waterpik?

Thanks!

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Lisa, because of the way hydrogen peroxide foams, I have not tried it in my Waterpik. According to Antimicrobial Periodontal Therapy "Other solutions, such as dilute mouthwash or hydrogen peroxide, are ineffective." I better check my recommendations!

Thomas Gail Haws said...

p.s. Lisa, the comment about peroxide being ineffective was with reference to using it in an irrigator.

Anonymous said...

Dear Tom,
Your Blog was a light in the end of the tunnel. I was told i had good teeth and suddenly one day i had inflammation and pus on a particular gum the back lower big molar
9mm Depth during inflammation
Went to peridontist, measured 7mm and was told to have gumflap and bone regeneration surgery but firstly was told to do 4 quadrants of Scaling and Root planning. because some teeth on different quadrant have calculus.

He didnt tell me the depths except to say none necessitate surgery except for the tooth that caused the specific inflammation because it already has bone loss.

I hardly flossed and am paying the price. Would you think I should go for all 4 quadrants cleaning and THEN followed up by 2 more touchups

meanwhile starting on your recommendations?

The reason why i tend to believe him is because i havent been good at all with dental hygiene and probably do need to clean it.

I hope to hear from you soon as I have a scale and root planning this friday.

PLease advise,

Sharon L

Thomas Gail Haws said...

You might give yourself six months after the root planing to see if you can start reversing the situation before you decide on surgery. Can you get the exam chart from the dentist to compare with next time? Can you get a WaterPik and a water bottle and start swishing and nightly cleaning immediately? Are you motivated to do any fasting?

I think if you use an irrigator nightly with TLC and focus on your worst areas you will see improvement in six months. Make sure you spend some time thinking about my top ten actions to reverse gum disease.

Anonymous said...

Sharon L

Thank You for your very fast response. Yes I can get hold of a waterpik. I work solitary from home so i have no problem waterpikin 3 meals.

May i ask about Waterpik Ultra Dental Water Jet is that theone i should get? and pocket pik does it really get down to 7mm? Some say yes some say NO, irrigator only does 3mm
so I do not know.



Yes i am reading very slowly your website..i need to read slowly so i can absorb..

Thank you, hope you can suggest if the model i was thinking of getting is ok? Waterpik Ultra?

Sharon

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Sharon, that WaterPik looks like the one I have.

I can't speak authoritatively about reach depth for the WaterPik. But I have a hard time believing that even the glass tip (regular irrigator tip) is not at least somewhat effective for even 9 mm pockets. Without all the double negatives, what I just said is I think even the regular glass tip should have at least some beneficial effect on even 9mm deep pockets if you use it well. I found that the PocketPik tip was flimsy and didn't last very long, so I have almost exclusively used the regular glass tip on 2-4 level power. The results I get are very convincing to me. Donahue's Antimicrobial Periodontal Treatment Guidelines reference claims that even if misused (High power? Excessive time?), the WaterPik is safe. So you could use the glass tip or the PocketPik on high power for your deepest pocket.

Personally, I have a bit of respectful fear for the power of the WaterPik, and having read in the WaterPik instructions not to use more than 5 minutes daily, I feel best using it only for my single nightly cleaning, which has brought me great results. Remember that part of your program is to leave your mouth in clean peace for hours every day to do its healing thing. Remove the food and colonies and boost your immunity, and the healing should come.

By the way, have you seen my video of bone regrowth around the roots of my teeth?

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Here is the video.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sNFuqh5oQz0

Anonymous said...

Thank You Tom!

I understand

I promise to report back.

Sharon

Thomas Gail Haws said...

That will be very helpful. I look forward to hearing in the Spring how it is going for you.

Anonymous said...

Just a side note.
Its funny how everynight I wrestle my dog to brush his teeth, put plaqueoff in his food from proden
and put plaqueoff in his water

and im the one with the serious problem.

and I really wrestle my dog, with his screaming, snarling, barking, panting.

Thank You, Sharon

Anonymous said...

Oh btw my pocket was 9mm on Wed last week (measured by dentist)(swollen gum) and after periochip, today was 7mm (measured by periodentist)

Sharon L

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Is that because of home care? That's great improvement!

Anonymous said...

Hi Tom I have been reading your blog and you are such an inspiration and kind to share all that helped you. I went to the dentist and basically she told me (she was absolutely vile) told me i will end up losing all my teeth and i need the bottom middle ones out asap, said not much bone there the top of my teeth is ok and the gums are pink. I am so scared and this has really affected me. I have noticed a bit of difference doing what you said with the helping side. Please give me advise, i am so scared my teeth are wobbling at the bottom can i save these teeth?? Can my gums or bone grow back?

I have always cleaned my teeth and had a good oral hygiene routine so this has shocked me a lot to come on i had no idea well apart from things starting to go wrong for me in my mouth.
please give me some positivity on this, i cant afford the treatment or lose my teeth. I could kick myself i never noticed this. :(

Thanks

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Thanks for your kind words. Well, it doesn't sound like your dentist visit was very pleasant. I think they are conditioned not to expect much home care improvement from people.

The news you got was startling and alarming, and it's a good reason to make big changes now. But I think there's no need to make any big decisions about tooth removal until you have had a chance to change your ways and give your body a chance to heal.

Is it possible that you have been drinking or eating excessively hot things that have been damaging mainly your bottom gums? We know our bodies can grow new bone, so what you need to do is weaken and stop the infection and then keep your teeth clean most of the time after that. Are you considering extended fasting? Are you now focusing on all-day swishing? Have you thought carefully about the top ten actions list I posted? What is your inner wisdom about this? What would you recommend?

Anonymous said...

Hi Tom, thanks for your quick response. I have been swishing all day since i read your blog try to remember as much as I can. Also using mouth wash and flossing (wasnt big on that before have to say) I am going to try the fasting i am just worried and paranoid that if i don't do something drastic like getting the dentist to take out the tooth I will make the infection worse. I think you are right it may well be tea that is causing me problems, I have since cut back and am also making sure its cool. How much and how long fasting do you recommend? What can I do to build up bone/roots/and the gums is there certain foods? I have read about coconut oil round the gums?

Is there a chance it will get worse although I'm going to be doing all these things to help to heal?
shall i get an electric tooth brush?
I think this may have al started with a tooth that chipped but stupidly ignored. :(

Thank you for your time once again

Thomas Gail Haws said...

I think in your case the hot tea may be a big culprit. A blog about this issue was brought to my attention by another visitor. Cutting out the burns may make a huge difference for you, and I think you will immediately begin to see slow improvement.

I don't think you risk making the infection worse if you do the following: 1) swish all day, 2) use a waterpik, 3) use a germicide, 4) try some fasting. Antibiotics are also a possibility though I am not a proponent. See the Antimicrobial Periodontal Treatment Guidelines linked in my top ten list post.

As for fasting, I suggest you begin by fasting 48 hours, which will let you experience heavy water drinking. If that goes well, I suggest you fast 2 or 3 days a few times (maybe once or twice a month). If you feel the need and the desire after that, I would suggest trying a longer cleansing fast after reading well about it.

You may be right in sensing that you have an urgent need for a serious blow to the infection whether by antibiotic or fasting. I suggest you follow your wisdom on that. I don't want to lull you into complacency. Please read my top ten list repeatedly, follow its links, and think long about it.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

p.s. A sonic brush is good, but not revolutionary. If your budget is limited, I suggest getting the waterpik first, because it is revolutionary for your gums. A waterpik compared to floss is like a sandblaster compared to a paint scraper.

I feel strongly that giving yourself a chance to demonstrate radical change before resorting to dental surgery is the least risky course for your life. If you are not able to marshal the resources necessary to reverse your disease, then you can resort to the surgeon.

Anonymous said...

ok thanks very much for all your advise, i will keep you posted.

I'm debating about going back to the dentist to check for a 2nd opinion but they are only going to say the same thing I expect. So I think ill get going on all you have said. :)

Anonymous said...

Dear Tom
I went for my first Scaling Root Planning today for my entire mouth, all 4 quadrants. I had many many many injections until the maximum dosage was reached however my gum would still refused to be numb in certain parts and it was painful and I would jerk and he would stop. My lips and mouth were as numb as could be. I have to see him in 2 weeks and another 2 weeks for cleaning (but not as intense) i dont know what this means.

I think other parts of my mouth isnt good but i'm determined to do what you do, night fast maybe from 8 to 8.
I bought a waterpik and IT DIED 5 seconds into running it.
I googled and it seems waterpik has many poor quality issues, deadon arrival or dying shortly or after a year.

Any idea if there is other brands recommended?

I also got a sonic philip toothbrush with soft head, the oral B is just way too harsh (the head)

I was given painkillers and antibiotics.

i was pretty upset to learn that my gum just couldnt get numb enough!
needless to say I would eveh HAVE LESSER courage for any gum/bone graft surgery.

I did see your video and I did laugh. you were trying so hard to show us but being a video its so difficult

Sharon L

(i have been religious in cleaning but I really do not think i will brush or floss tonight, it hurts )
I however have ate crap all my life and this is a wakeup call to eat (sip good)


Anonymous said...

Dear Tom

Sorry i have more to add
I want to fast but i have to take the antibiotics that i was given and it says after FOOD and i dont want to get stomach pain. So i made myself a liquid shake (fruit/veggie)

I however do the 12 hour nightly fast

HOWEVER...you mentioned water swishing...
Do you actually spit out the water when you swish as you say you carry the bottle with you?

Sharon L

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Hi, Sharon. Several things here. I will try to get them all.

1. Coconut Oil. I have a post about Oil Pulling. See what you think about what I wrote.

2. Healing Foods. Wake-up calls are a Good Thing. I think overall immunity and health is important for you. Any little changes you can make to your habits will probably help. If any come to your mind immediately (like "I can let my tea cool" or "I can eat oatmeal instead of Ramen noodles") they may be what you can do.

3. WaterPik. What bad luck! The WaterPik brand is all we have used in our family. The AntiMicrobial Periodontal Treatment Guidelines link I reference at my Top Ten List gives three brands. I hope you were able to return the defective irrigator!

4. Cleaning Trouble. Beware of excessive cleaning. Flossing especially can be painful, which is why I am so delighted to have discovered the superiority of using an irrigator, and I have not flossed with string in years. Promptly find a good irrigator and try to settle into a once only daily nightly cleaning other than your swishing.

5. Fasting. You probably want to wait until your antibiotic regimen is done before fasting longer than 12 hours. Until then, just practice drinking plain water.

6. Swishing. Like I say repeatedly, swishing is super important. I normally do NOT spit out (I DO swallow) after swishing with plain water. In your case where you are in the middle of extreme cleaning of an active infection, I can understand the desire not to swallow normally. But I think it's okay for you to swallow sometimes like if you are in the car or whatever. Let reason guide you.

Hang in there and stay in touch. Laying off the tea and junk and swishing is going to pay off.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

7. Dentists. There is a wide variety of attitudes among dentists. I have used six of them in the past decade or so, and I would recommend only two (maybe three) of the six. So you may be happier with a different office. Who knows? But you are right that they probably will not have different news for you.

Stay in touch, swish like crazy, and good luck with an irrigator.

Anonymous said...

Dear Tom

Im wondering if you have heard of
http://www.calciumtherapy.com/

or if your readers have written in about them

I find that very fascinating

Sharon L

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Sharon, I am going to cautiously say that looks promising. I am encouraged that he says it is simple and inexpensive. Would you dare ask your dentist if they would apply it, or are you thinking of doing it in your home?

Thomas Gail Haws said...

I am also encouraged that he is not a lone ranger. He honors colleagues around the world. I really like the guy, and I am going to keep listening to him. Tell me anything you learn from him. Feel free to do a guest post or more here.

Anonymous said...

i do not trust my perio guy. he would either dismiss it or 1)ask me to use it but still do all the pricey stuff he ask me to do.

sharon L

Anonymous said...

Tom
Basically I had the entire Deep cleaning with anaesthesia done and he has told me he got everything he needed to do but he wanted to see me in 2 weeks to do more cleaning and another 2 weeks again
(both not needed anaesthesia)

my concern is this is too much cost wise and invasive. if he is doing this at such short interval, my gums will not rest and I'm hesitating to go.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

That makes sense. I really like Manhart. He doesn't say anything superstitious or kooky. Please let me know what you find out. I am especially listening to what he is saying about toothpaste and other germicides. I have not personally used toothpaste in over 2 years. And I rarely use any germicide any more.

Anonymous said...

http://www.amazon.com/Open-Wide-Manharts-Dentistry-Education/dp/1936840804/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1414469275&sr=1-3&keywords=open+wide#reader_1936840804

havent bought it

Sharon L

Thomas Gail Haws said...

I agree. If your gum color and breath are telling you good things, I would not return any sooner than 6 months. But take your exam chart home with you.

Keep listening to Manhart. Keep tossing the junk in your diet. Keep pampering your teeth and gums with gentle temperatures and lots of swishing and some fasting. Let me know if you do any calcium therapy or are able to find a good dentist near you. I found another dentist using calcium therapy in New York, so there are others.

Anonymous said...

i ordered the home care kit
it would take time

i believe i read somewhere that the standard was KILL KILL KILL
and any surgery doesnt correct the underlying cause and has to be repeated again and again in intervals

his is heal heal healand non invasive

(something like that)
thank you Tom

Sharon L

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Yes! Thank you, too. We all are helping each other.

Anonymous said...

Hi Thomas

I dont know if you recall but we kind of thought my problem with gum recession possibly was hot tea (horrible visit to dentist)
well I have to say and i hope you get more come back to give updates.
I have definately noticed my teeth are whiter, the gum is indeed growing back and is pinker especially on the top middle teeth and looks healthier. Yes ive still got my wobbly tooth but there is no way no one is going to take that out before it causes me problems. I do unfortunately have a couple of molars i know will have to go and be replaced (chipped over the years) and i have not gone to the dentist to do anything about it so yes i have learnt from my mistakes.
BUT from fasting as much as I can, not having hot drinks
swishing a lot through out the day
mouth wash.
Im going to keep going and hopefully when i go back to the dentist they will say my gums are looking better but i have been very shocked to see my gums growing back.
Hopefully I will start to see the recession get better with the bottom teeth gums? Did you find it was a process, where the gum was coming back in small portions?
Thanks again for sharing your stories and advise.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Yes, I remember! How exciting to see such fast results. Six months of that is bound to bring a lot of improvement.

Dr. Manhart wrote encouraging words to me. That was nice.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

I think your bottom gums were under the most distress, and they have responded fastest. Dr. Manhart says he gets fast results, but I am a patient guy, and I don't have very high expectations. I would expect that it may take months little by little for your entire mouth to keep improving. As long as you can avoid root planing and surgery, that will be good.

Anonymous said...

I dont seem to see much difference to the bottom and what scaring me the most ive noticed is the tartar i have had build up and not realise behind my bottom middle 4 teeth, and thinking if i clear that by getting a scaling it will cause them teeth to loosen if not fall out.

But also worried that if i dont have that scaling its going to cause the gums to get worse?

Thomas Gail Haws said...

That sounds scary. Did you exchange your irrigator? Have you tried asking Dr. Manhart how much do-it-yourself calcium therapy would be? What have you been doing for your daily home care?

Anonymous said...

I have been cleaning my teeth morning and night and mouth wash. Swishing a lot throughout the day trying to fast as much as i can at least 3 days a week. I see there is a definite difference with my gums parts where the gums are lighter and starting to cover the top of the tooth. Just the bottom ones really don't seem to be better?? Ive got a dentist apt in January.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

It sounds like you are making progress and there is hope even for those teeth. Email me tom dot haws at g m a i l dot c o m and I will forward you an email I got from Dr. Manhart. Maybe you can find a better dentist near you. Maybe Dr. Manhart can point you to a dentist and give you some hope. I wonder if he has a way he can do paid consultation remotely.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

I wouldn't fast too long too often. I fasted 12 days only once; fasting up to 6 weeks is dynamite, but I wouldn't do it very often. Typically I fast 24-36 hours only about once per month, though I don't think there is anything wrong with fasting 24 hours weekly. For teeth, I think the most important fasts are the nightly fast and the dynamite long fast (to zap infection with the nuclear option). What is you body telling you about continued infection? Do you think you are moving in the healing direction, or still bogged down with immunity problems? If you are moving in the right direction, and you aren't really feeling moved to do a long fast, the story of your lower front teeth may be a waiting game of home care and general cooperation with your dentist or another dentist you find.

Anonymous said...

My gums swelled up, turned bright red a month or so ago. I hadn't been to a dentist for 15 months prior to that; where I was told I had "angry" inflamed gums. I had cleaning done and 2 crowns put in due to old (30 year old) fillings needing to be replaced.
Last week I went to see a dentist. He said he had never seen gum disease this advanced w/o bad breath, etc... He sent me immediately to a gum specialist. My pockets were mostly 3s-6s, with a few 7, 8, and even one tooth with 9s. I am now on a week of antibiotics. He plans on doing deep cleaning in 2 segments. Not sure if that is scaling or what...he just said deep cleaning. I have 50% bone loss; but teeth are still held in place. Should I go through with the cleaning to make sure all the plaque, bacteria is cleaned out? I am thinking I should? In the meantime, I am going to use the Sonicare faithfully, with a 12 hour fast at night, and water swishing. I also floss and use Listerine once a day. I am thinking about getting a Waterpik but am scared I will probably use it wrong.
Any suggestions or advice? By the way, I have severe general anxiety, so my visit to the dentists have not been regular. :(

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Hi. What a wake-up call!

My experience with WaterPik has been nothing but amazing since the day I bought it. It feels great. It is fun and refreshing. It flushes away bacteria in a way that nothing but maybe swishing can possibly do. The results are fast and impressive. I have no reservations at all in recommending you lay down the $50 immediately and try it out every night.

Your concerns about root planing are shared by Dr. Manhart. Look above in the recent comments for some discussion between me and Sharon about Dr. Manhart. I suspect he would tell you that what you are being told to submit to is barbaric abuse. If you decide to order and try the Calcium Treatment Dr. Manhart recommends, let me know how it goes. It's new to me, but it rings possibly true.

Can you find a dentist who will give you a less severe single visit periodontal cleaning? Please let me know how it goes.

Tom

Anonymous said...

Hello,I'm very grateful that I found this blog.I was diagnosed with Periodontitis three months ago.I had been having very extreme bad breath.I went to a dentist and was told I have Perio.My pockets are mostly 3 with a few 4 and one 5.I had a deep cleaning done with an ultra sonic cleaner.I think the hygienist did a good job but my breath is still very bad.I am flossing at least twice a day and brushing 2-3 times a day as well.My gums were too sensitive at first to use Listerine but I am now using it once a day.It seems that when I floss I get a very bad smell from my gums.Also,brushing can make my gums smell bad too.I just want this bad breath to go away.Will it ever get better?I also just bought a Phillips Sonicare electric brush and I am using it everyday.Thank You !

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Focus on flushing and your breath should improve. Rinse after any intake other than water. And please consider a WaterPik. I don't think you will regret it. I kind of feel bad that people are spending money on sonic brushes when the more important piece of equipment is probably the irrigator (WaterPik). Also make sure you don't eat or drink anything but water after cleaning your teeth at night. If you want super fast results, you may want to try a bit of fasting of 24 hours or more on nothing but water. See some of my blog posts about that.

Anonymous said...

Thank you.I have read your posts and all of the comments here.I will buy a WaterPik.I have also been swishing water after every meal since reading your blog.very informative and much appreciated.

Lena said...

Hello Mr Haws: I've been reading your blog and all the comments. I haven't seen anything posted for 2015 yet. I have gum disease. I was told by the Peridontics that I have some bone loss. I am very happy to find this
information on reversing gum disease. I have started the treatment. Thanks,

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Well, since my new dentist pronounced me problem-free in 2012, there's not a lot to tell. I beat the gum disease!

Thomas Gail Haws said...

p.s. I still visit the dentist twice yearly for a routine cleaning and exam.

Anonymous said...

I had moderate to severe Gum Disease about 4 years ago. Perio first recommended traditional Flap Surgery then 9 months later told me about a new procedure he was trained for, the LANAP procedure. WHAT A DIFFERENCE (price, procedure, pain, results!). One very very loose tooth with pus and swelling and pain (close to losing!) is now fairly stable and pink and no more pain. I had to do a retreatment on two molars just because they were that bad. My numbers for all my teeth went from 10-15mm to 4-5mm to 2-3mm, a few 4-5. But I'm stable and in the maintenance mode (healthy all around and no bad breathe). I would recommend LANAP (if you have the worst case like me) and Tom's suggestions on home care for the rest of your life. I too purchased a waterpik after finding out I had gum disease and it basically kept my teeth decent until my LANAP. Though I believe if I had done Tom's methods, I would've made faster progress in maintaining and healing my teeth. Nowadays my regiment is swapped gumlines with qtip, general light floss, waterpik with water or mouthwash then brush (brushing only once a day at night). Always rinse after eating. And water is my main source of liquid always. Definitely let your mouth heal with no food as much as possible.BUT LANAP was AWESOME! Don't let fear keep you from fixing your teeth by avoiding the problem.

AndreaN

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Thank you, Andrea, for excellent fresh recommendations. It's wonderful to see how these simple habits and principles work time after time.

Amanda said...

I am recently diagnosed with periodontal disease and have an abscess close to two molars 7mm pockets. I bought myself a waterpik but have found even on low setting (2) my gums swell and the infection seems to spread. This has me worried. Can I still reverse this using sonic toothbrush, floss, interdental brushes and herbal mouthwashes ? How long for a 7mm pocket to reduce and will it be possible without waterpik

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Amanda, this is worrisome. How much water are you drinking, and how long are you going with nothing but water after you use the Waterpik? Are you limiting your cleanings to once daily? Do you think it would help to turn the WaterPik to 1 and use bleach in the reservoir?

I think you might have good success with mouth rinses (herbal mouthwashes, assuming they are not harmful) several times a day, after all non-water intake. And have you considered fasting a few days?

Please be sure to ponder my top ten actions to reverse gum disease post.

Amanda said...

I only used the waterpik on number 1 setting or number 2, I added in Neem mouthwash all natural no chemicals but no matter what i use with the waterpik my gums swell up worse and it makes me feel the infection is spreading. I will certainly consider the fasting you suggest thank you. What do you feel is worrying ?

Thomas Gail Haws said...

It's worrisome that the irrigating is not giving you the results I'd expect. On the other hand, it may be normal to have some initial inflammation. Please let me know how your gums look and feel after a week of irrigating. And do please make sure you are brushing and flossing/irrigating only once nightly before your night fast. Also, please use water or your herbal preparation for frequent rinsing throughout the day.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

p.s. I'm not a doctor. I'm just a friend. But that is how I would react and what I would do.

Amanda said...

thank you, i will let you know...i will try everything but i think i may leave out waterpik, i dont know why it makes it worse. thanks again

Thomas Gail Haws said...

OK. I look forward to hearing back from you. Also, I'll tell you a story. I never was very good at home dental care for the first 3 decades of my life. And on the rare occasions I would do a good flossing of my teeth, the next day my gums would be would be painful and inflammed (puffy, red, and tender). I think that is pretty common.

Lots of people have replied saying that frequent, explosive "ninja" swishing has worked amazing results for them. If I were you, I would maybe let my inflammation subside and then try irrigating again maybe every few days or every other day, because nothing flushes away the bacterial colonies quite as well as an irrigator.

Amanda said...

Thanks Thomas. I have tried quite a few times with the waterpik and it does the same thing, swells up my gums. I dont have this with flossing. Its very strange. I can only think that my gums are in such a delicate state they cant take the "needle" type action of the waterpik. Do you think I could get a similiar effect with vigorous "swishing" ...will that also disturb the bacteria ? Any thoughts much appreciated

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Amanda, that is a possibility. On the other hand, people have been using Oil Pulling for centuries. and it is fundamentally vigorous and extended swishing (20 minutes at a time!). Why don't you carry a bottle of water with you for a few days and try ninja swishing to see how your gums respond? Lots of people have raved to me about the results of it. (On the other hand, lots of people have raved about irrigating with a WaterPik.)

If you get really desperate and motivated like I did, you only recourse may be a long fast. You can read about my 12-day fast here on my blog under the right side column subject "Fasting". And the purpose of that fast was to jump start the healing of my gums. To remind you, my success story was 1) a 12-day fast, 2) follow-up nightly cleanings and fasts, and 3) follow-up swishing after all eating (carrying a bottle of water around with me.

Amanda said...

Great advice Thomas....much appreciated and have found all your posts very very helpful. Will let you know !

Anonymous said...

What ratio do you dilute the listerine when using with water pik?

Thomas Gail Haws said...

I dilute it as much as my penny-pinching ways dictate, maybe about 1/10. I am sure it would usually work fine at full strength, and in your case you may want to try it full strength for a few days to see if that helps. If you are a penny pincher also, you could maybe dilute it to 1/2 or 1/4.

Anonymous said...

Hello Tom, I have a bit a unique situation. I had a tooth crowned 10 years ago, ever since a pocket formed near the base of it. Just a couple of months ago that tooth began to ache, so I went in. The pocket was deep and I also have bone loss in the root of that tooth. When they replace the crown, the tooth bled like crazy. The bleeding was partially due to the infection in the pocket but also the gum had grown up under the crown and also there was some decay. The crown made the tooth feel better but it's still sensitive to the cold. I went back they did some sort of deep cleaning and injected some antibiotics. But the gums are still sensitive, red, and bleed when I use the sonic tooth brush. I also have three teeth on my lower jaw that have inflamed gums. So here's my plan. I bought a waterpic and used it tonight. I also have some great toothpaste from the healthfood store plus a homeopathic drop to put on the gums ( that drop numbs the gums) Plus I also got a mouth was from there for gingivitis. Sounds like over kill I know but I need to heal. After reading your blog I think I need to drink only water and a lot more of it, and like you said fast in the evening. What I am wondering is how long did it take for your gums to show improvement.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Once they hit on the right combination, most people I hear from see improvement in their gums in a few weeks. If you don't see any improvement, something is still missing.

Jessica said...

Hi Thomas, I did a google search to find the ideal WaterPik setting and came across your blog. I had mostly 4s and some 5s in late 2014. I agreed to do root planing (not so bad in my experience) about 6 months ago mostly for a preventative measure to keep it from getting worse. 3 months later many pockets were better but still measuring some 5s. I know it can take time to improve. I've been using a Sonicare brush, flossing, and using a Waterpik. I found out about another neat tool I've been using since March, so not sure on its effectiveness yet, but it gets great reviews. It's called a Sulcabrush. They don't sell them in stores that I know of so I got mine on Amazon. I use it every night and on problem areas in the morning. Your information about the fasting is very interesting and I think I'll give that as try as well. I already do the nightly but want to try the longer duration fasts. Thanks so much for sharing the info and your experience!

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Thanks for the tip. The Sulcabrush looks like an interesting device based on the Amazon reviews.

Anonymous said...

This is a great blog Tom!
I was diagnosed with severe periodontal disease a month ago and was advised that my bottom second molars have to be extracted (third molars were extracted 15 years ago). I have deep pockets (8-10mm) around the two teeth.
Since the diagnosis, I have been following a program similar to yours: I use the WaterPik, the Sonicare tooth brush. I use diluted peroxide inside WaterPik. I also use the baking soda toothpaste from Arm and Hammer.
In addition to all this, I also use the Vitapick syringe from albrite.com (advocated in the book "The Smile Method"). I use the Vitapick to irrigate my deep pockets all the way in. I use diluted peroxide (0.5 to 1%) for the purpose.
I saw another periodontist last week having adhered to the new cleaning regime for only 3 weeks, and he was surprised that one of the pockets had reduced from 10 to 8!
I hope to save my two teeth and 10-15K in the cost for implants.

I have deep cleaning scheduled in a month. I think the periodontist will clean up the area around the two teeth really well. I am scheduled for a single visit for about 1.5 to 2 hrs. Is that something I need? I don't seem to have any problems since I started the new method? Thanks


Thomas Gail Haws said...

thanks for the kind words! I'm not clear on the difference between a deep cleaning and a root planing. 1.5 to 2 hours sounds like more than I ever had for my "periodontal cleanings". I didn't feel like my "periodontal cleanings" were overly invasive or harmful. Bottom line, I am not sure what to think. It does sound like you are getting good results. If you want to get really serious, a fast would be heavy artillery.

You might ask your dentist if there is an intermediate level cleaning you could get now and maybe the 2 hour cleaning later if there is still trouble in a year?

Tom

Anonymous said...

Hi Tom
Wonderful blog. II have severe periodontitis with bone loss around molars upper and lower both sides. Recently got Open flap gum surgery on left side bottom and top. Right side was scheduled this week but, after checking my mouth again yesterday my dentist says we shall postpone right side surgery by a month. He saw good improvement on left side as I I am following his instructions of using intetdental brush after everymeal, I have also started oil pulling with coconut oil. I will order waterpik now. Hope all the home dental regimen will help me avoid surgery on right side.
The pockets readings ranged from 3mm to 6mm.6mm in molar region.
I quit smoking 2 years ago, but picked up chewing tobacco that I am giving up right now.
I had one loose molar on top left that has tightened up much after surgery.
I am looking forward to health.
Thanks a lot for sharing your experience and knowledge

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Thanks for your kind words. Don't forget the power of extended swishing not only with oil in the morning, but after every time you eat.

Anonymous said...

Hi Thomas
Today I received the waterpik WP 100. Had ordered online, waterpik was recently introduced in India (lucky me). I will start using it regularly and hope it helps. I also started frequent water swishing through out the day. I cannot do multiday fast as I am on hypertension medication (I have to take a tablet everyday before breakfast). Thanks again for sharing your knowledge and experience.
Regards Ajay

Anonymous said...

Hi Thomas,

I really like your blog and have gotten some nice information from reading the comments here.I was wondering if you could recommend a site that has a healthy diet for people suffering from Periodontal disease?or if you could list some foods you have found that are good? I seem to have a problem with everything I eat as far as giving me bad breath because of the periodontal disease.I have been very bad about eating sweets and candy but am now stopping.Thanks!

Thomas Gail Haws said...

While I am not a doctor, you probably want to focus on foods that strengthen your immunity. That probably excludes sugary things (maybe even extra sweet fruits like oranges) and processed foods. And make sure you aren't eating something that is a specific problem for you (like wheat is for me). D'Adamo's Genotype Diet may have some hints for you if you find it fun to do. I understand that peanuts are good for the breath, but really once your get your gum disease in retreat, your breath should clean right up.

If ninja swishing/rinsing and a waterpik (irrigator) don't give you prompt results (pinker gums and cleaner breath, you may want to focus on your nightly fast. Whatever you do, have fun with your changes!

Anonymous said...

Thank You.The Peter D'Adamo diet looks really interesting.I need to read more on that.I do swish and use a waterpik regularly as well as a sonicare and regular trips to dentist.In the last year my teeth and gums have improved a good deal but I still seem to have flare ups of inflammation.When this happens I have a bad taste in my mouth and breath gets worse.I am attributing a lot of this problem to my diet at this point.As I said I have been consuming a good deal of sugary foods and candy which I know the bacteria which causes periodontal disease must love.Peanuts sound good also.Thank you again for a great website!

Thomas Gail Haws said...

You are very welcome. And thank you for commenting and replying back!

Anonymous said...

Hi I'm 37 have lost almost all my molars.. As a child of was only taken to the dentist when I had a toothache , and at that point the tooth was extracted. Growing up I never paid attention to my dental hygiene. Once I started going to the dentist they started pulling teeth again but never told me I had a gum disease, instead they gave me a partial. Years later I changed dentist and I got the news that I would loose all my teeth that I have left... Of course I cried and tried to commit suicide.. But I'm still here. I have tried the oil pulling don't really feel a difference I think my disease is just to advanced my dentist never checks my pocket depths I guess I'm just a lost cause... I do have the sonic care and try a tea tree oil toothpaste..I'm tempered in trying the fastening and the bleach I mean I don't think it can get worse.. I always have a yucky flavor in my mouth maybe the fastening will work....

Thomas Gail Haws said...

I am really sad to hear your story. I have heard of amazing results from fasting with extreme cases. You may want to try talking to Dr. Mark Manhart. It's just a thought.

Drew said...

To the Anonymous poster whose message dates from May 12, 2016 at 5:22pm:

I was in a very similar position to you just 6 months ago. Today, I have successfully reversed 75% of my gum disease, according to my dentist. She told me she'd never seen a reversal like it.

How did I do it? I used the Vitapick that someone else on this thread also mentioned. It's a syringe-like applicator that allows you to deliver an antiseptic solution directly into the deep gum pockets themselves (you insert the applicator in between the tooth and the gum line and slowly depress the plunger to ensure that the solution enters the gum pocket).

I started out using it three times a day because my situation was so bad and I was in excruciating pain from my infected gums. As each day passed, I could feel the improvement and eventually, I could see it too. All but one gum pocket has healed entirely and it's only a matter of time before that one is fully under control as well. My gums went from being soft, red and inflamed to a firm, healthy pink today. They've even regained their normal "orange-peel" texture.

As for the solution inside the Vitapick, I simply used saturated saline (add non-iodized salt to plain water and shake to dissolve; keep adding salt until the water can no longer dissolve any more).

I want to stress that along with this daily protocol (again, starting out 3 times a day, down to 2 after a couple of weeks, and now just once a day - it's the last thing I do before I go to bed after I've brushed, flossed and cleaned my tongue), I also introduced megadoses of Vitamin C (in the form of sodium ascorbate). The vitamin C helped to deliver the nutrients I needed to start healing my gums. In the beginning, I took up to 25,000mg a day, which, fair warning, wreaks some havoc on your digestive system. If it's too hard on your stomach, I'd suggest getting some liposomal vitamin C (which is much easier on the bowels). My current dosage is about 8,000mg a day, which helps to maintain the health of my gums without any digestive distress whatsoever.

That's it, the entire protocol that healed my gums: Vitapick and Vitamin C.

This is the website where I order the applicator that I use: http://albrite.com/

Here's a recently-discovered cheaper (but equally effective) alternative applicator:
http://www.dentalwellness4u.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=TDWI&Product_Code=IS&Category_Code=OH

I hope my message reaches you, and that you find relief and healing. All the very best!

Thomas Gail Haws said...

I love it!

Anonymous said...

Hi Tom , thanks very much for your helpful post and excellent recommendations. Can I ask what you think about the "deep cleaning -- scaling and planing" at the dentist? Did you have it done? Do you think it's necessary or do you think these alternative methods are good enough? I have several 4 mm pockets and 1 5mm pocket. I've had them for a while, and previous dentists have told me that by flossing and better oral hygiene, it would be fine. But I just visited a new dentist and hygienist, who recommended the deep periodontal cleaning. From the limited research I've done, I am a little skeptical. Maybe it's just fear talking, but the procedure seems a little invasive, and I've even read that it could cause more damage. I have insurance that covers it so I know I should do it, if it will be helpful -- of course followed up by the electric toothbrush, waterpik, swishing that you recommend. Any thoughts you have would be much appreciated. Thanks!

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Hi. A lot of people have mentioned scaling and planing. I did used to have "periodontal" cleanings. But I don't think they were root planings and scalings. And I don't think they were the determining factor in my healing. As you probably saw, my pockets were a bit deeper than yours, and what really turned things around was my beginning of 100% faithful nightly cleanings, fasting, and swishing. If I were you, I would see what results you have in six months rather than starting with a planing. Personally, I would rather fast 12 days than have a planing/scaling. Anyway, you can just wait and see. Nothing wrong with that as long as you have turned over a new leaf in your home care.

John Coffey said...

I was diagnosed with moderate gum disease. I had several 7mm pocket depths along with 6's, 5's and many 4's. I had a Deep Cleaning done.I then started using a Waterpik along with a sonic toothbrush. I would brush and Waterpik after I ate breakfast, after last meal of the day I would use a floss pick,then waterpik on a 8-10 pressure. I have a 3 unit bridge that I use teepee brush to clean on last brushing also.

I just had a 26 week(6 months+2 weeks) check up after my Deep Cleaning and was told I basically had no tarter and no cavities. All my 7's are 5's now. My 4's and 5's are all 3's now.

I drank and swished water in my mouth all the time. I eat 2 meals a day only and rarely snack. I am 50 years old

Thomas Gail Haws said...

John, this is exactly the kind of report I was hoping to see. Mainly a sonic toothbrush, WaterPik, and rinsing. And lots of short fasting (nearly every day), but no long fasting. Thanks for the great news! Come back again when you have more!

John C said...

I have another appointment in 4 months and if my gums have shrank even more mt Dentist is going to do regular cleanings every 6 months unless things change.Of course I will be back and post my results! =)

It is funny because I basically did the same thing as you and got results,I actually had more deep pockets than you did and going by your experience I reduced em down and I thank you for that. I did have a deep cleaning done in the beginning but I think it helps to start with a mouth you know is clean.

I used a pocket tip on the Waterpik on a setting of 2 every couple of weeks also,I used Alcohol Free Colgate Whitening Rinse for that as the third ingredient is Hydrogen Peroxide.I had tried Colgate Total at first but it started to stain my teeth brown.

With deep pockets I notice that that even after flossing I still got gunk out with the Waterpik,almost always. For deep pockets I would stake my life that flossing alone will not be enough,pockets can't heal if there is any food or plaque in there and fasting gives the clean pockets time to heal.

Using a 8-10 setting,in my opinion,also gets rid of any plaque in your pockets.

I never eat or drink anything except water after last meal and never go to sleep at night with a dirty mouth.(with food anyway =P)

I'll talk again in four months =)

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Very good points all around. Big congratulations. I feel the very same about flossing vs. Waterpik. By the way, I am 50 right now too.

It's good to know that you are able to use 8 to 10 setting without any adverse effects. I will make a note of it. Also that a good dental cleaning is important. I note that neither you nor I used the terms "root planing" or "scaling". I wonder why our dentists are not telling us that. See the comments 4 and 5 up from this. Do you think it's good for me to continue questioning the need for those (planing and scaling) like Dr. Mark Manhart does?

Tom

John Coffey said...

My "deep cleaning" took a total of 50 minutes with no numbing or shots,as for pain it was nothing that a Ibuprofen didn't fix.

They still charged me $536 out of pocket with insurance.

This was the second Dentist(Private) I had went too, the first(Dental Chain) wanted to use Arrestin and more procedures that would have cost over $2500.

I think you are correct in questioning the need for "root planing" or "scaling" like you have been.

Maybe our Dentists told us Deep Cleaning for tarter below the normal gum line cleaning but not deep enough for planing and scaling?






Thomas Gail Haws said...

I think you are right.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing your experience. I'm sure that you've helped a lot of people. I was just wondering if you had loose teeth when your journey began and if so, did they tighten following your method? And the periodontal cleanings you mentioned, were they done under anesthesia? I get regular cleanings twice a year and I am following your suggestions to helped my gums. Thanks again.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

I was not aware of any loosening. And I was not put under anesthesia. Just 7mm deep pockets.

Anonymous said...

Love your blog Thomas. Working on your recommendations now. Along with prayer in Jesus' name. God bless!

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Thanks for your encouraging comment. Blessings to you in your undertaking.

John C said...

Had my cleaning today. I only had 3 spots measure a 5 today when probing pocket depths and that is from a erupted tooth in the very back molar on my right side upper, all other 5's from previous visit are now 4's.
I am now going in every 6 months for cleanings.

I have to add that I have controlled Type 2 Diabetes and high blood pressure.I could stand to lose a few pounds as they say.
I used to smoke(31 years) but have been completely smoke free for 8+ years.

I would also like to add for other poster, none of my teeth were loose when I began my journey either and when I had my "Deep Cleaning" I received no anesthesia. either.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Great results. Congratulations. Sounds like we have a protocol. I don't know if you are interested, but Dr. Jason Fung has some interesting results about Type 2 Diabetes.

Stelios Stylianou said...

Hey, Could I ask what what Philips Sonicare model you bought?
I am 22 and already had a surgery on my gums and I am having a lot of trouble with my gums.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Hi. I don't know what model I have. I like my sonic toothbrush, but I don't think the brand or model of sonic brush is all that important in my success stopping my gum disease compared to the importance of using a WaterPik after brushing every night and rinsing after every time I eat anything. Sonic brushes and irrigators are expensive, and I would recommend much more highly that a person buy an irrigator than a sonic brush first. An irrigator is a complete game changer, whereas a sonic brush is little more than a labor saving device, in my opinion.

John C. said...

I use a Waterpik Combo (WP900) that had Sonic Toothbrush(SR3000) and irrigator together,normally $100 but if you catch a sale it can be gotten much cheaper. I agree with Thomas, the Waterpik and swishing water in your mouth anytime after you eat or drink something is the key,and of course to be consistant.

I am not trying to promote Waterpik, it is just the brand I use and why. =) I have no problem with the Phillips except the price.

John C. said...

I use a WP-900 from Waterpik that has the irrigator and toothbrush(SR3000) combined.

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Thanks for the input, John C.

John C said...

Just had my 6th month cleaning
all 2's and 3's with only 2 4's. No 5's anymore

Thomas Gail Haws said...

Huge congratulations. Keep it up.