In efforts to live a more eco-savvy lifestyle, we’re bound to make what others revere as “crazy” life changes and decisions. Among my most recent eye-roll-worthy decisions was choosing to see a dentist who was certified by the Eco-Dentistry Association. I’m not sure what people thought was going to happen when I went to this “hippie tree hugging” dentist, but they thought I was off my rocker. As far as they were concerned, I was chewing tree bark, flossing with tall grass, brushing with a pine cone and using tree sap for toothpaste. Seriously, folks, I just got my teeth cleaned!
The biggest thing I’ve learned through visiting my EDA dentist? He’s a dentist. I still had panic attacks, I still hate the scratchy teeth scraper noise, I still loathe the tooth polish, I still can’t figure out what I believe about fluoride, and I still have slight to moderate gingivitis.
So, if it’s just a “dentist,” what’s the purpose of choosing an office with the Eco-Dentistry Association qualification?
To receive the EDA certification, the office has to pledge to find ways of lessening waste, conserving water, using less energy, […] and EDA-Certified offices are Eco-Dentistry Association members who have taken extra steps to re-think every aspect of their business and procedures to ensure they are a part of the solution, and a leader in the transformation of the industry. – ecodentistry.org
Honestly? My experience was mediocre at best. It was not life-altering. It didn’t feel “extra good.” It really just felt like a small step in the right direction. The office I chose was most likely on the lowest end of qualifying for this EDA certification, but I was thankful for the steps, albeit few, that they did choose to take. Their refreshment cups were compostable, they had recycling bins all around the office, they did not have single use or disposable dental instruments, they served organic fruits, and their sanitization systems were energy efficient. As far as dental products, they didn’t use anything completely natural or off-the-wall, although, I would have been completely open to it. Even more so, they actually semi-pressured me into a fluoride treatment since I use fluoride-free Tom’s of Maine. I was a little peeved, but since I’m non-confrontational, I obliged.
So, regardless of whether or not they’re doing absolutely everything they can to better our planet and be advocates for our healthy or just maintaining the minimums for membership into the Eco-Dentistry Association, I still think it’s a worthwhile cause to support. Every little bit helps!
Is your dentist Eco-Dentistry Certified? What do they noticeably do to maintain their membership? How have your experiences been?