This page explains what HealOzone is and what its advantages and limitations are. The following article is from our legacy website, and has now been archived.
Fun Dentistry with HealOzone
2004 saw the best Easter in the history of Dental Fear Central so far! This is what we found in our nest of e-mails (well hidden among the 57 and 58Kb viruses)… yep, you’ve guessed it, the eagerly awaited feature article on HealOzone by Keiththeteeth, BDS!
“Hi everyone – yep, I got lots of eggs! But I’m on a diet, so I’ll have to rely on my son to demolish them. My daughter doesn’t like chocolate, imagine that! When I decided to go on a diet one of my friends /patients gave me some advice. She said if you look in the mirror and see a fat person it means one of two things; 1- You are anorexic, and are not seeing the real you or 2- You’re fat! Anyway, swiftly moving along to the question:
What is Healozone?
Healozone is the best bit of news for anyone who doesn’t enjoy dentistry. Does anybody who you wouldn’t want to meet on a dark night really enjoy dentistry? Well, at least my friends/patients can now laugh with me about it!
Healozone is a clever bit of kit which makes Ozone (3 oxygen atoms stuck together) and delivers it straight to your tooth through a handpiece with a little squidgy tip on it. (So when patients think they’re biting my finger they are actually biting the squidgy thing.)
Ozone is a tiny molecule which breaks down bacteria, viruses and even fungus like candida/thrush. It always works and you can’t be allergic to it. Neither can those bacteria develop resistance to it.
So why is it the greatest thing since sliced bread I hear you say?
Because it requires no injection AND it’s painless. In fact, there is no sensation to being zapped with the ozone machine. The only way you can hear it working its little miracle is you can hear the machine bleeping. Also, I usually do my little party trick at the end and demonstrate how it breaks down a latex glove in 10 seconds. So far none of my fingers have dropped off and I can still count to 9 _ – dang! Would you believe that!
OK, you’re still reading this. You know that the only way Healozone can hurt is if I drop it on your foot. After 40 seconds application, we get you to rinse with a remineralisation (<-Great word that) rinse which contains Fluoride and minerals that help the tooth to repair.
This is how I first got interested in Ozone. My middle name is Abraham, and my wife, Mrs Lot was looking back at our old practice, Sodom and thinking, well Gomorrow were going to get Healozone when there was a blinding flash of light and she turned into a pillar of remineralised tooth enamel.
– Actually, I was working at the Royal London Hospital trying to reduce tooth decay on a group of patients who had received radiotherapy for head and neck cancer. These patients are highly susceptible and we found that using diet, fluoride and mouthwash we could reduce their tooth decay. Then along comes Ozone, and I thought this is the answer.
Following the Ozone treatment, my friends use a kit containing special toothpaste, mouthwash and a little handbag spray. Don’t worry if you don’t have a handbag – you can put it in your pocket!
What do I use Healozone for nowadays?
During the last 14 months, I have learned more about the uses of Healozone. It was developed to treat early tooth decay before it was a hole. It’s great for that, but we also use it every day for treating much bigger patches of decay. Often we paint in some pink filling (no metal), into the damaged tooth to act like a bandage on the tooth, and stop bits from going into the hole. We may zap the tooth again a few weeks later to help the repair process.
When do I NOT use Healozone?
- When I’m on holiday, (though I do talk to other people about it, but I’m getting better.)
- When I don’t need to because there is no sign of tooth decay.
- Healozone is not actually a miracle and if my friend/ patient thinks that it will cure everything, and that they are invincible, I will not recommend it.
The point is that if you have tooth decay you must be willing to change the circumstances that created it. We can use Ozone, but you must change the diet factors which initiated it. Together we can have a simple, quick and painless way of solving the problem. But only through cooperation.
The only disadvantages we have seen are that we cannot yet apply Ozone to all situations. It is just difficult, but we may overcome this with new developments currently being tried.
Cosmetically, while we have reversed the tooth decay, we cannot change the colour, so if you want to disguise the dark patches we usually bond a tooth coloured resin (no metal) over the dark marks.
What’s the cost?
Most dentists seem to charge around £45.00 for treating one tooth and usually £25.00 each tooth thereafter. Many like myself include diet advice, remineralisation kit and re-treatment if required in with the original cost. For example, to Ozone all four adult first molar teeth, remin kit, reassess and diet would cost £120.00. This would take about 30 minutes- mostly explanation! And require a short 5-minute second visit about eight weeks later.
The future of Healozone is bright (but not Orange!). We have a wonderful new technique – I am still finding new uses for it every day, treating ulcers, cold sores, piles (No not Haemorrhoids) of things!”
© Keith Hayes, 2004
Keith “Keiththeteeth” Hayes (47) got his BDS degree in London in 1977. His hobbies include travel, music, friends and work! (no honestly…) He runs a small friendly caring Dental Practice in Tunbridge Wells, Kent called “Rose Cottage”, so bring your handbag! Before anyone gets too excited, here’s the snag: he’s married *sniff*…
Keith wrote this article back in 2004, when HealOzone was first emerging as a new technology, and as a result, there was a lot of optimism in the air (or ozone rather). Please be aware that while ozone really can work, the technology is not yet reliable enough to work for all or most situations:
We have had everything from no results to very good results with Ozone treatment. I think as a treatment modality it at present lacks predictability but like any new technology I think this may come with time.
We deliberately downplay Ozone on our web site as it has a tendency to raise peoples hopes and they are then disappointed when they find out that it is not suitable for use in their situation. I think dietary considerations and eliminating the true causes of decay are an important first step after which the Ozone may well have a role to play. Alas, it is human nature to want things to work the other way around.
My main concern is that the ozone protocols have evolved rapidly and patients treated early on may require practitioners to re-visit these areas. Almost every dentist stresses the need for long term follow-up with Ozone so this should not be a problem but I don’t want to see this treatment modality get a bad reputation on the basis of the early learning curve that we all have to follow with any new treatment.
Generally, I see it as a useful tool to have available to me but I do not think it should be used as a marketing aid to anxious patients as typically at presentation someone who has not been for a while may have more extensive decay that ozone can cope with. That said if Ozone is suitable then this can be a really pleasant surprise that no needles are required during treatment.
Our current approach to care focuses on identifying the causes of tooth decay and gum disease in our patients first and showing them how to stop the disease process themselves before we go on to any major restorative work in the practice. This seems to work really well especially for our more anxious or phobic patients as once the disease process is controlled we generally have much more time then to deal with any necessary fillings etc at a pace that genuinely suits our patients.