Many people known to me use their false teeth only in order to be able to smile. They cannot chew with their plated and either swallow their food unmasticated or they take out the artificial teeth and endeavour to chew with their gums. I suppose dentistry is like surgery.

A STOCKBREEDER judges the health of the animals he wishes to buy by the condition of their teeth. Judged by that test, the health of the civilized is deplorable. On the other hand, savages who live on primitive foods have magnificent teeth. That applied to the primitive races in all climes, from the Poles to the equator, whether they live exclusively of flesh and fish, as do the Eskimos, or are lacto-vegetarians, as certain African and Indian tribes, or whether they are mixed.

Length of life has greatly increased among the civilized in the course of the last few decades, and medical men have taken the credit for the reduced mortality, scarcely with justification. Civil engineers have provided the nations with an enormously increased supply of water in no longer disease-bearing, but is purified by the chemists. Engineers have provided the towns with an excellent drainage system.

Men no longer drink foul surface or well water contaminated with disease organisms. Housing and the food supply have been enormously improved, and last, but not least, deficiencies of the masticatory have been made good by the dentists. In the olden days elderly people had foul mouths which poisoned them and then they became toothless and they lived on slops. Loss of the teeth gravely interfered with nutrition. Besides it interfered with hearing. Toothless jaws are pressed together at a different angle those bearing teeth, and hearing suffers. Many of the toothless who have no false teeth become deaf.

The dentists have been a blessing to the elderly and to the toothless. Unfortunately only a small minority of the dentists are competent. The great majority of dentists mechanically patch the teeth of their patients, and often do a great of mischief. To may sorrow I have experienced the incompetence of dentists. In accordance with the advice generally given, I tried to preserve my teeth as a youth by going every few months to a dentist to have them examined and, if necessary, attended to.

My dentist was man in the Harley Street quarter, who treated many distinguished people, among them some dukes and duchesses. He charged very high prices, had nice manners, and never gave pain. He scaled away the tartar where it was visible on the outside of the teeth above the line of the gums, filled up hollow teeth in the usual way, etc.

Through faulty living my teeth began to deteriorate and they grew very soft. My dentist commented upon the fact that my teeth were so soft that it was difficult to put in a filling by the never enquired about my diet. Preserving teeth by natural means did not interest him.

Perhaps he thought it to his advantage is his patients did not know how to preserve their teeth. I know now that dental decay can be arrested by attending to the patients bowel and by a natural diet, rich in mineral elements and vitamins, which will greatly strengthen the structure of the teeth.

In course of time I experienced discomfort and pain about the gums, and I suspected that pyorrhoea had developed. My dentist pooh-poohed the idea. I then had an X-ray taken by the best radiologist, and showed it to him, and I found to my amazement that this fashionable but incompetent dentist did not know how to read an X-ray picture. Convinced that I had pyorrhoea I went to another dentist who occupied a professorship at one of the leading London hospitals.

He confirmed that I had pyorrhoea, explained to me that that trouble was due to germs and prescribed to me a special tooth-brush in a sterilized container, a special germicidal tooth powder and a germicidal mouth wash, which of course proved absolutely useless. I then discovered that the gums can be strengthened very greatly by massaging them and incidentally the pus at the roots of the teeth can be squeezed out. No dentist had ever informed me of this simple treatment.

Pyorrhoea is very frequently a disease produced by faulty dentistry. If was so in my case. Dental decay above the margin of the gums very often extends beneath the gum margin. After having drilled away the diseased portion of the tooth, my dentist had filled the hollow with the grossest carelessness, allowing long snags of metal to protrude from the side of the tooth below the gum margin into the gum, producing irritation which eventually turned into an abscess, producing pyorrhoea.

The incompetent individual was perfectly satisfied if the outer appearance of the teeth was pleasing to the patient, caring only for the outward appearance. This incompetent individual freed my teeth of the tartar only above the gum margin where it was visible. He did not pay any attention to the tartar below the gum margin. Here it was allowed to accumulate for years, forming a thick layer, loosening the teeth and irritating the gums and producing septic developments.

J. Ellis Barker
James Ellis Barker 1870 – 1948 was a Jewish German lay homeopath, born in Cologne in Germany. He settled in Britain to become the editor of The Homeopathic World in 1931 (which he later renamed as Heal Thyself) for sixteen years, and he wrote a great deal about homeopathy during this time.

James Ellis Barker wrote a very large number of books, both under the name James Ellis Barker and under his real German name Otto Julius Eltzbacher, The Truth about Homœopathy; Rough Notes on Remedies with William Murray; Chronic Constipation; The Story of My Eyes; Miracles Of Healing and How They are Done; Good Health and Happiness; New Lives for Old: How to Cure the Incurable; My Testament of Healing; Cancer, the Surgeon and the Researcher; Cancer, how it is Caused, how it Can be Prevented with a foreward by William Arbuthnot Lane; Cancer and the Black Man etc.