Understanding Dental Ozone Therapy

Daniel Vinograd

Dental ozone therapy can help you keep your teeth and gums as healthy as possible. So what is ozone? And what can this kind of therapy do for you? We have the answers you need.

What Is Ozone?

Put in the simplest way possible, ozone is three atoms of oxygen joined together in a compound. This elemental form of oxygen occurs naturally and results from lightning or ultraviolet energy, among other things. In a dental clinic, we can use an ozone generator to simulate the effect of lightning and create ozone. It’s the same substance that’s in the partially depleted layer of ozone more than 50,000 feet above our heads. Ozone is also one of the many ways that nature repairs itself when smog is present.

Ozone possesses unique properties that make it especially useful in dentistry. That’s because it’s a powerful oxidizer that we can use to very effectively kill fungi, bacteria, virus and parasites — and the concentration required is much lower than with chlorine, plus there are no toxicity issue. A single ozone molecule works as well as 3,000 to 10,000 molecules of toxic chlorine and kills pathogens thousands of times faster.

The Battle Against Oral Infections

With an ozone generator, we can take medical-grade oxygen and change it to ozone using a corona discharge reaction that works in the same way lightning generates ozone. Evidence has shown that this machine can generate the right concentration of ozone to kill many sorts of pathogens.

In dentistry, much of what we do is a fight against infections. Pathogens like bacteria, fungi and viruses cause these infections. It may be a single type of organism or several that cause the problem. These pathogens can cause other problems in the body, just as infections in other locations of the body can cause dental issues. This has been well-documented. For this and other reasons, dental infections can be difficult to completely eradicate. Infections continue to reinfect impacted areas, and this can lead to long-term dental and overall health problems.

But many pathogens share one thing in common: ozone will punch a hole in the membrane of the organism and cause it to die. In the presence of ozone, few pathogens can live. In fact, studies have shown that the body’s own antibodies create ozone in some cases to kill invading organism, but they can’t always create enough. Ozone therapy, then, is a continuation of nature’s work.

Therapeutic Goals Of Ozone Therapy

Dental ozone therapy is based on evidence-based science and meets therapeutic goals consistent with the highest standard of care. These specific goals include:

– Elimination of the pathogens

– Restoration of correct oxygen metabolism

– Establishment of a friendly ecology

– Increasing of circulation

– Activation of the immune system

– Simulation of the body’s own antioxidant system

Ozone can be applied to oral tissue through three methods for best results: ozonated water, ozonated olive oil and oxygen or ozone gas. When using ozone therapy, we use it in conjunction with other common standards of care, including x-rays, pocket-probing and clinical exams.

Two Scientific Facts Behind Dental Ozone Therapy

– Ozone is generated when energy is applied to oxygen (O2) that causes it be split into O1, then that singlet O1 molecule combines with an existing O2 molecule to create O3, also called ozone. Lightning as well as sunlight and UV light cause this to happen in nature.

– Ozone is an oxidizer or oxidant. That is, it’s a substance that accepts an electron from some other substance, called an electron acceptor. It adds an oxygen atom to a compound that is being oxidized. Healthy cells have antioxidants in their cell membranes that prohibit them from being burned up — or oxidized — by ozone. Pathogens don’t have these antioxidants or have few of them.

How Ozone Can Help You

Dentists can use ozone in the dental office to help patients in several ways, including:

Protection and prevention. Use of ozonated water on a regular basis as a pretreatment can help disinfect your mouth. Ozone disinfects and sterilizes the mouth while leaving only oxygen and water as byproducts of the process.

Treatment. For specific care purposes, ozone can be used as ozonated water or as ozone gas. These can be used for treating infections without antibiotics or chemicals — only oxygen and water. This type of treatment can be used no matter the location, size or type of infection. Gas can penetrate even deeper than water.

In Europe, ozone treatment has been used for decades to speed the healing of wounds and treat a number illnesses. Research on the topic was done as far back as the early 1900s. When used in a controlled manner, it’s safe, effective and has no side effects. That’s better than with many medications. Ozone molecules are powerful weapons that can kill microorganisms quickly and effectively without doing any damage at all to healthy human cells.

Reverse Your Cavities

Millions of patients have been treated with dental ozone, something used by dentists around the world. Yet no side effects have been recorded from using dental ozone properly. It’s possible to safely create a highly oxygenated atmosphere in the mouth that can reduce cavities and help reverse them.

And dentistry isn’t the only place where ozone is being used effectively. It’s also proving its worth at the veterinarian’s office, in the home, for skin care and in the HIV-positive community where killing viruses and bacteria is particularly important. Ozone has even shown great potential for treating diabetic foot ulcers and MRSA infections that don’t respond well to antibiotics and other treatments.

There are now hundred — perhaps thousands — of dentists in the United States who are treating patients using ozone for periodontal disease, decay therapy, remineralization, root canals, canker sores, bone infections, tooth sensitivity and much more. It is perhaps the idea of stopping and healing decay that is most unique and intriguing.

Click play, then on ‘Ozonized Water & Preventing Gum Disease From Home’

Minimally Invasive Treatment For You

In the dentist’s office, no treatment is less invasive that clean, comfortable dental ozone therapy. Early decay, in particular, can be treated effectively with ozone, preventing the need for cutting holes in teeth to remove it. We’ve managed to cut hundreds fewer holes in teeth because of minimally invasive ozone therapy.

We’ve also been amazed and astounded that this therapy can penetrate enamel and help heal and improve the deeper structure of the tooth. Few other therapies can do that. Depending on how long you’re exposed to ozone and its concentration, the penetration of the effect can be several millimeters or more.

As a dental team, there’s now a continual discussion in our office about whether to heal or whether to cut to solve a dental issue. In some cases, cutting and drilling are required, and we have the best possible array of tools to do that easily and painlessly. But sometimes, dental ozone therapy can allow us to heal your mouth instead of cutting on it. That’s an astounding advancement.

Cavities happen in an acid environment below the tooth’s surface. Ozone can kill that acid-making bacteria and effectively neutralize the waste product, creating a new environment that’s conducive to overall health and hostile to pathogens that cause disease and decay. Healthy bacteria can replace the bad ones. The acid niche is gone — and stays gone for months. With ozone treatment in the office and at home, it’s possible that the healthy situation can remain and the unhealthy situation can be kept at bay for months or years — perhaps forever.

Our ozone periodontal program includes regular oral health evaluations, cleanings, oral cancer screenings, full mouth debridement, oral hygiene coaching, ozone irrigation, ozone injections with MI desensitizer paste for total comfort and a home care kit with instructions.

Can we help you understand how ozone can be part of your dental health program? Of course, just call (619) 640-5100

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Dr. Daniel Vinograd, DDS |
10450 Friars Rd, San Diego, CA 92120 |
Phone: 619-630-7174    •    Dr. Vinograd, DDS, is a Dentist in San Diego, CA, offering services as a periodontist, and providing teeth whitening, dental crowns, invisalign, implants, lumineers, dentures, root canals, holistic, family and cosmetic dentistry.


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