We have reopened for regular dental appointments. In light of Covid-19 public health concerns, there will be some changes to our usual protocols. Click here to learn more.


Serious Barrie dentistry: collaborative dentistry, or “what do my teeth have to do with my heart?”

Serious Barrie dentistry: collaborative dentistry, or “what do my teeth have to do with my heart?”

In North America, dental decay was such a problem in earlier times that dental research and development was given its own avenue for growth.  Thus began in the U.S, under the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the National Institute of Dental Research (NIDR) (Now the National Institute for Dental and Craniofacial Research).  The NIDR has made great strides in dental understanding, but for some reason,  there is the unfortunate separation of dentistry from medicine both in academia and in the minds of the public, and not necessarily for the better.  Our goal is to bring these fields together, as better integration of dentistry with medicine (and all the other allied health professions) can only mean better care for the patient.

Now we are still fighting the notion that teeth have nothing to do with general health, in a time when health care is becoming more and more fragmented.  Complete oral health care does not only depend on healthy teeth and gums (and joints and muscles), but also on clear communication with other health professionals.  What goes on in the mouth can certainly affect the body, and can even be a warning sign that not all is well.

Some examples?  Lots. We have diabetes, which can worsen the health of gums , but just as importantly, if the gums are not healthy, can negatively affect diabetic glycemic control.  Autoimmune diseases can manifest in the mouth in addition to other places in the body.   And even oral cancer, which can be a location of primary or metastatic growth.

Health care is becoming more and more specialized, and especially with an aging population with multiple health care needs, the more health care providers are involved in patient care, the more it is important to have effective communication between them.  It is health care’s responsibility to coordinate effectively, and from a dental office point of view, that means involving physicians, pharmacists, physiotherapists, nursing staff, personal support workers, and any other relevant practitioner.

Your responsibilities?  Take your health seriously, and mention everything to everybody.  Don’t hide information from certain health care professionals.  Show up for your appointments.  Follow recommendations.  Take medications as prescribed.  The whole system works when even the patient is involved, and don’t let things get in the way of proper health care- this means insurance companies, or even well-meaning friends and family who may love to chime in with their non-expert opinions.  Health care is here to help, but only if you let it.

Contact us for a serious, thorough oral evaluation.  We’d love to be your dentist in Barrie.


Dr. Elston Wong Portrait

About Dr. Elston Wong

Dr. Elston Wong completed his dental degree at The University of Toronto in 1999 before arriving in Barrie in 2002. After graduating, he continued to learn everything he could about dentistry. Now he has taken the time to share important information for anyone to read.

Meet The Whole Team

Ready to bring your smile back to glory?

Our Team is Ready to Guide You to Long-Lasting Oral Health