Practical Application of Preventive Dental Medicine (III)

By MELVIN E. PAGE, D. D. D. Muskegon, Mich.

Index of Endocrine History

Physical characteristics help us to determine which side of the autonomic nervous system is dominant.

The sympathetically dominant are apt to be high strung and are more numerous among females. They dislike hot weather and thrive when it is cold. They are apt to have a more rapid pulse than normal. Many have high blood pressure. They require less sleep than normal, and may in severe cases be classified as emotional and sometimes mentally unstable. Women between the ages of 15 and 50 of this type are apt to have large breasts and be heavy through the shoulders, whereas their legs are sometimes so thin that one wonders at their ability to support the heavy upper portion of the body. Severe cases have the pouter pidgeon build and can be symbolized by a triangle standing on its apex.

The parasympathetically dominant usually have a high calcium and low phosphorus, but this phosphorus level will fluctuate in those having arthritis or pyorrhea.

Men are inclined to early loss of hair, and the hair of both sexes is inclined to grey at an early age. The nails may be ridged and the lumen slight or invisible –they are tired most of the time, and exert much will power to keep going. This continual effort is sometimes evinced in the wrinkled brow as a sort of worried look. Some get fat, but the majority are thin.

Women between the ages of 15 and 50 show disproportion of body build; the breasts being most always small, the shoulders thin, ribs prominent, while their hips and legs seem to have most of their weight. Many such women cannot buy clothes of one size to fit them, but may take a 16 upper portion and an 18 or 20 lower portion of their dresses.

These disproportions of body build are so characteristic of endocrine dysfuntion, that the author uses a system of arm and leg measurements to aid him in classifying his female patients.

It consists of measuring the circumference of the forearm and lower leg in five equidistant places and dividing the leg measurements by the corresponding arm measurements.

The results obtained are added and divided by five to obtain the average. This figure then represents the proportional size of the leg to the arm.

From the results obtained from a series of cases, a chart was prepared showing the caries average together with the proportion obtained.

The fact that caries increased in direct proportion to the disproportion is significant. The figure showing a proportion of the lower leg to the arm of 1.420 to be about correct, as caries were noticeable by their absence when they measured this proportion.

The calcium-phosphorus tests pretty well coincided with the

General Treatment

Parasympathetic dominance.

These people are put on some form of sea food to furnish the trace minerals and are denied sugar and white flour. The rest of the diet is scrutinized to see that it contains the other essential. Met, eggs, cooked and raw vegetables and fresh doors a great deal are given cod liver oil plain.

Blood analyses are made at weekly intervals and if progress is too slow, endocrine treatment is begun.

There may be difficulty in determining, from physical characteristics, just what the autonomic imbalance is. In such a case after two or three blood analyses have been made on a sugar free diet and that patient’s average calcium-phosphorus level determined, thyroid in quarter grain doses may be given once or twice daily for 3 or 4 days and another test taken. Improvement in the phosphorus level wound then indicate that the patient is parasympathetically dominant and the sympathetic needed the stimulation which is obtained from the thyroid medication.

The treatment with thyroid substance then could be continued possibly with a smaller does and its effect noticed on the subsequent analyses. Care should be taken to so regulate the dosage that the phosphorus level does not become too high, or a case of arthritis may be produced.

If a satisfactory does becomes established, occasional tests should be taken to determine if the dose used is still satisfactory, for the effects of thyroid medication are somewhat accumulative, and too, any glandular regeneration which occurs necessitates smaller doses.

Sympathetic Dominance

The treatment of the sympathetically dominant is also by establishing an adequate nutrition for that individual. These individuals seem to have a stronger endocrine system that the parasympathetics and show resistance at times to some of the ill effects of dietary insufficiency. They are apt to grow fat, which the author interprets as an effort on the part of the organism to overcome the disability of insufficient mineral intake by an increased consumption of food. These people though sometimes fat are energetic, perspire freely, and like cold weather. They are unlike the fat parasympathetics who are sluggish and do not like cold weather.

Since the thyroid is in the sympathetic system, many of these people showing sympathetic dominance may show symptoms of hyperactive thyroids.

Women at the menopause having sympathetic dominance usually have a serious time both physically and mentally while the endocrines are undergoing the re-adjustment necessarily taking place at this time.

Insulin in three unit doses acts as a specific in both cases. As near as it is our privilege to see miracles happen, we have the opportunity to its greatest extent by the well considered use of three unit insulin in the sympathetically dominant.

Gums: —Healthy, anemic, hyperemic, receded, calculus, little calculus, no calculus.
Diet: — Foods used habitually: milk, meat, eggs, fish (freshwater or saltwater), kelp
(4 mo.), white, bread, whole wheat, corn, rye, candy, cake, pie, sugar (teaspoons daily)
(0). Cooked vegetables: peas, beans, cabbage, carrots, spinach, tomatoes, greens.
Raw: cabbage, lettuce, carrots. Fruits, vinegar, cheese, yeast, cod liver oil, beer, wine, liquor.
Remarks ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Medical diagnosis & history …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Diagnosis_Sub-normal body chemistry which accounts for her average of four caries annually.




Recommendation ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..


Case number one is of a girl aged 21 of Swedish extraction. Her caries average per year was 5; her measurements showed her to have had a slightly subnormal body chemistry. Her diet was very good with the exception of sugar and trace mineral intake. She was given Macrocystis pyrifera, 6 tablets daily, to be certain that these minerals were in her food, and was asked to forego sugar for awhile.

The results were that her phosphorus level began to increase immediately and after a slight period of fluctuation steadied at the ratio of ten of calcium to four of phosphorus.

The response of this patient was very rapid, accounted for probably by her recent European ancestry. General conditions also improved remarkably. Her chief symptom of being tired most of the time left her. If she continues her dietary regime she is bound to be caries free, since her usable calcium-phosphorus level is considerably above the danger line.

Case number two is of a woman aged 55 in need of partial restorations. Her caries average had been 4 annually. It was explained to her that the cause of dental caries was an underlying systemic condition which if not corrected would cause her to lose her remaining teeth and the supporting process for her partials also.

This woman was born in Sweden and came to the United States when she was 20. At that time she had no carious teeth, but developed them soon after arrival here. Her diet was not good. She averaged 14 teaspoons of sugar daily in her coffee, and ate mostly bread, meat and fruit. Vegetables bothered her as she expressed it.

Upon dietary correction by insisting upon vegetables both raw and cooked and upon the daily use of Macrocystis pyrifera to furnish the trace minerals found only in sea food, her response was very rapid. The improvement in general health was remarkable. She found to her surprise that she could go without sugar and that vegetables no longer bothered her.

To data she has developed no new cavities and there is no evidence of alveolar change.

Case number three is of a woman eighty years of age who had alveolar absorption under full dentures and who was developing cataract in both eyes.

Her general diet being very good, only the addition of Macrocystis pyrifera was made to it. She was asked to go without desserts containing sugar which was no hardship in her case as she used very little anyway.

The improvement in her calcium-phosphorus balance is evident, and to her great delight her eyes improved so that upon re-examination by her oculist she could read two more lines on his chart.

Treatment in this case consisted entirely of adding the trace minerals to her diet.

Case number four is of a woman aged 44 of Nordic descent who by her measurements showed sympathetic dominance. She was from out-of-town and could stay only one month. Her dentist in her home city referred her to the author for attention if her gums should bother her while here. He had been treating her for pyorrhea for some time.

Treatment after the second visit was three units of insulin twice a week plus Macrocystis pyrifera and the discontinuance of sugar.

Inflammation and soreness left her gums at the third visit and she continued to improve. It was believed that continued dietary control would prevent further trouble. Calcium Gluconate was given her to take if she had any recurrent inflammation.

Case number five is of a man aged 32, whose caries average was 5. His diet was not good. His selection was good enough, but his work necessitated his eating two meals a day in restaurants.

Discontinuance of sugar and the addition of daily amounts of Macrocystic pyrifera had the desired effect. It was nearly a year after his first blood test that he became sold on the idea of prevention, having had five new cavities in that time. No new cavities have developed since that time about, one and one-half years.

Case number six is of a girl 15 years of age who averaged three cavities annually. Thyroid was indicated because of her measurements and because time of treatment was to be limited. The dose of thyroid selected was ¼ gr. daily for five days of the week. After two weeks the dose was cut to one-tenth gr. thyroid five days per week. This was discontinued in two more weeks.

The author was of the opinion that abstinence from sweets and the daily use of Macrocystis pyrifera with her otherwise good diet, would clear up the underlying cause of her caries.

Case number seven is of a man 22 years of age of Mediterranean ancestry, who gave a history of three cavities per year and also neuralgiac pains in the shoulders.

Dietary correction and the extraction of a devitalized tooth proved beneficial to the shoulder pains. This case is yet unfinished as his calcium-phosphorus level is still too low and they are not in balance.

Case No. eight is of a woman 52 years of age who had been treated for pyorrhea for twenty years. Her teeth were all sound and very good looking.

Dietary correction solely by the addition of Macrocystis pyrifera was started at the time of taking the first blood test.

Extraction was found necessary one and one-half years later, with a marked change in the graphed blood analyses for the two years following.

No other treatment was indicated in this case because of her measurements. The result was interesting because it showed so well the effects of infection upon body chemistry.

Case No. nine is of a normal. Normals of Nordic descent are very rare in Michigan. This one had been taking Macrocystis pyrifera on her own initiative for two years before the author saw her. As the author had no  normals he persuaded her to serve as a guinea pig. Tests were taken frequently over a period of two years. Occasionally experiments were tried on her to find the effects upon the calcium-phosphorus levels of different substances. She had not always been a normal as evidenced by her teeth, but has not had a cavity in the four years she has been taking this mineral food supplement.

In all of the cases charted, the ingestion of sugar caused the phosphorus to drop and the calcium to rise. Any inflammatory process such as acute pyorrhea, arthritis or a sore throat was accompanied by a high phosphorus, in excess of the amount of calcium available for compound formation.

In short, calcium-phosphorus balance is an index of efficient body chemistry.