So unless you've been living under a rock you might have heard about a documentary on Netflix called Root Cause.
The documentary highlights one mans story ( Frazer Bailey) about how a root canal he had done whilst in his 20's caused a mirade of
medical issues, including chronic fatigue.
Throughout the first 20 minutes, the documentary highlights the many, many techniques and approaches Frazer took to try and get his body right and rid himself of his chronic fatigue.
And he tried everything from reiki, coffee enemas, chinese cupping and other holistic medicinal techniques. You name it - he tried it!
Until one day, after many tests and questions the penny dropped and he realised, that a root canal was the sole cause of all these medical issues that he faced.
Hmmmm.... we hear you say.
How did one man come to such a conclusion.
If you're unsure this is how a root canal procedure works ( See below)
The doctors, fellow dentists, holistic specialists within the documentary who give their opinions on the matter echo the same opinion when it comes to root canal treatment.
Their argument is a follows: ( Paraphrased)
"Bacteria in the tubules ( in dentine) cannot be sterilised, so after a root canal is completed there is still bacteria within the tooth. And with no access from the patients blood supply any longer, the body can't even deliver its own immune defences to help keep the infection in check. Thus potentially leading further damage to the body"
It was also mentioned in the documentary, that certain studies and alleged evidence had proven that a high percentage of women who had breast cancer also had a root filled tooth on the same side as the cancerous tumour.
Whoa! what a big claim to make.
Our opinion on Root Cause the documentary:
1: It's one sided. After watching this documentary we really believe that it's a one - sided approach that does not give an balanced view on dentistry, particularly the speciality of endodontics.
Although there were opinions given by dentists in the documentary, at no point did we hear from an endodontist.
2: It's melodramatic. The whole documentary is incredibly melodramatic in every single way. It's almost as if the producers and directors had to be reliant on the persistent use of cinematic shots and the re-enactments of the numerous treatments Frazer tried to get well, in order to make up for the lack of substance that the overall documentary provides.
3: It's scare mongering! Anyone who watches Root Cause and already has a fear of dentists or has heard 'bad things' about root canal treatments would be put off even more. Making our job as dentists, even more difficult. Thanks Frazer(!)
4: Evidence Based Dentistry is imperative.
This documentary really proves that proves that as a dentist you need to be sure about the treatment you provide and why you provide it.
Evidence based dentistry supports this and has the science and statistics to back why we practice what we preach.
Otherwise you'll get swept along with the fairies and and end up believing everything you read on Google and everything you see on Netflix.
Would we recommend the documentary? If only for jokes. It is definitely not a valid source to seek valid information - but it definitely opens up the wider discussion about questioning what we've been taught in dental school and why we do what we do.
What are your thoughts? Make sure you share below and share this post if you liked it.