Reflections On Health
“The excellence of the body is health; that is, a condition which allows us, while keeping free from disease, to have the use of our bodies; for many people are 'healthy' as we are told Herodicus was; and these no one can congratulate on their 'health', for they have to abstain from everything or nearly everything that men do.” - Aristotle
Allow me to share the words of two doctors who I greatly admire. Dr. Harold Wirth was a visionary in the middle part of the 20th century. Dr. Michael Schuster is one of my mentors and writes extensively on practice and philosophy in health care.
Healthy, attractive mouths are found in all walks of life, rich and poor, highly educated and not. These mouths are seen in people who think well of themselves and have come to appreciate the deep physical and psychological roles their mouths play in their life. They know that teeth can make or break careers or inter-personal relationships.
The mouth, in its entirety, is an important and even wondrous part of our anatomy, our emotions, our life; it is the site of our very being. When an animal loses its teeth, it cannot survive unless it is domesticated; its very existence is terminated, it dies.
In the human, the mouth is the means of speaking, of expressing love, happiness and joy, anger, ill temper, or sorrow! It is the primary sex contact; hence it is of initial importance to our regeneration and survival by food and propagation. It deserves the greatest care it can receive at any sacrifice.
Psychiatrists have found that the improvement of unhealthy or unattractive mouths produces a profound emotional response in oneself and when others observe unattractive or unhealthy mouths. On the other hand, they are often baffled by the occasional person who becomes emotionally disturbed as a result of the loss of teeth. This emotional castration is not easily treated by the psychiatrist. And it is not easily undone by an accomplished dentist.
A sensible approach seems to be learning about one’s mouth and overall health. Thus, preventing disease and creating a customized plan for optimum health, function, beauty and longevity. Intelligent action consistent with personal values for health, function, beauty and a long healthy life will follow.
- Drs. F. Harold Wirth and Michael Schuster
As our nation continues to wrestle with issues of Health Care delivery and Cost Management, I'm inclined to ask what we, the patients and consumers of treatment, are asking of ourselves. If "personal values for health, function, beauty, and a long life" are truly deciding factors, I suspect the answer to our national conundrum lies closer to home than Washington DC.
Dr. Sandlin | Sandlin DDS Lawrenceville, Ga