The Dawson Academy Blog

Dental Articles on Occlusion, Centric Relation, Restorative Dentistry & More

Dr. DeWitt “Witt” Wilkerson graduated from the University of Florida College of Dentistry in 1982, the same year he joined the Dawson private practice group in St. Petersburg, Florida. Witt is currently a Senior Faculty member and Director of Dental Medicine at The Dawson Academy. He is Past President of the American Equilibration Society(AES). Witt currently serves as President of the American Academy for Oral-Systemic Health(AAOSH), and is an Adjunct Professor in the Graduate Program at the University of Florida College of Dentistry. He has formerly served as an Associate Faculty Member and Special Lecturer at the L.D. Pankey Institute. Dr. Wilkerson lectures both nationally and internationally on the subjects of Restorative Dentistry, Dental Occlusion, TM Disorders, Airway/Dental Sleep Medicine, and Integrative Dental Medicine.

Recent Posts

Tips for Treating Airway Disorders

So I want to give you a few quick tips on treating airway disorders. We're learning so much about this. It's been incredible. But let me just share with you a couple of key things to think about.

Number one, a lot of patients come in that are snoring or feeling poorly during the daytime or may have mild sleep apnea that are mouth breathers.

Very, very common. So here's a quick tip. Put tape across their mouth and have them breathe through their nose at night. Just try that, even as you first begin to analyze their airway problem. And often, you'll find that people will come back and say, "I slept great. I felt better. I wasn't snoring." And we've found that even mild apnea may go away through, just, simple mouth taping.

Transcript continued below...

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How to Educate Patients: A Dentist's Role in Treating Sleep Apnea

As our understanding of Dentistry’s role in whole health advances, we have increasingly meaningful conversations with our patients and community. One of my patients is a wonderful physical therapist, who is strongly committed to educating her patients about whole health subjects, including oral health. She has asked me to write several articles for her practice newsletter.

This month we discussed obstructive sleep apnea and systemic inflammation. Below is how we explain a complicated subject as simply as possible, communicating the role of the dental team in whole health.

Perhaps you have opportunities in your community, through your patients and medical colleagues, to get the word out, about Complete Dentistry from TMJ to smile design, and from sleep apnea to systemic inflammation!

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[Webinar] The More Complete 'Complete Dentist'

You can really get involved in the broader spectrum of dentistry, taking the concepts that we’ve learned at The Dawson Academy and expanding those into the whole body.

Today we have so many great things happening in the medical field. As you look here at the titles of books being written, you’ll notice each one of them are written by an M.D.

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The Connection Between Oral Bacteria & Overall Health

Supercentenarian Jeanne Calment from Aries, France, was born in 1875 and died in 1997, at the age of 122 years. When asked the secret to her record longevity, she answered, “Always keep your smile. That’s how I explain my long life.”

Though Ms. Calment may have been referring to a positive attitude, her words inadvertently had a scientific basis, related to oral health. Always keep your smile; meaning always keep your teeth and keep them healthy and free of disease. This will allow you to prolong your health and longevity.

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Introducing Patients to Dental Occlusion

Introducing patients to the concept of dental occlusion and complete care can, at first, seem like a daunting task to many. Dr. DeWitt Wilkerson discusses the following points essential to explaining dental occlusion and complete care to patients in the video below:

    • What is a physician of the masticatory system?
    • What is the role of a dentist?
    • How do you educate your patients?
    • What tools can you use to demonstrate occlusal problems to your patients?

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Creative Dental Treatment Planning

One thing that becomes quickly apparent, when seeing many patients with unusual and difficult histories, is how often we must make decisions, based on scientifically based logic, when textbook answers are not available for each and every situation.

I had an interesting case in point a couple of weeks ago. A patient I restored last year, due to severe anterior wear, called asking us to see her 19 year old daughter. She was experiencing sore muscles, left side TMJoint clicking, and facial pain each morning upon waking. She was also suffering from headaches 2-3 times a week.

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