Introduce yourselves and tell us what you do!
We're life-loving soulmates on a mission to redefine what it means to be a healthcare professional by taking the best care of ourselves first, and shifting the medical focus from fixing to healing. We specialize in functional integrated dentistry; bringing the mouth's function and oral ecosystem in alignment with the rest of the body.
We are also yoga teachers, globe explorers, and founders of a bi-annual dental-aid yoga retreat in the Dominican Republic jungles.
What are your non-negotiable morning rituals Before Life Happens?
Hydration, gratitude journaling, movement, breathwork, cold immersion, and kitchen lunch prep dance parties :)
How are you bridging the gap between eastern mysticism and western medicine?
By shifting the focus from fixing symptoms to healing the human behind the symptoms. The first and most important step is to SLOW DOWN and get to know each soul we encounter; what drives them, what scares them, what lights them up, and what they desire so we can discover why their health matters to them and how we can help.
Leading first with love, curiosity, and compassion rather than following a textbook script to prescribe the quickest fix and move on to the next person, and showing other dentists how this approach leads to a more successful and rewarding overall career!
What are your top tips for healthy teeth?
Stress matters the most: We see a strong correlation between chronically high blood sugar and stress hormones and unhealthy teeth and gums. High stress relates to grinding and clenching, craving more sugar, and many unsustainable chemical imbalances in the body. Therefore, we recommend creating a solid self-care regimen that prioritizes rest and recovery to end chronic stress cycles.
Along with that, we recommend trying your best to eat locally grown whole foods, diversify with probiotics, get adequate vitamin D, and of course, brush and floss twice daily. For optimal freshness, we haven't found anything close to Before's SuperMint formula!
You also host retreats that are part dental aid and part yoga retreat. Tell us about your upcoming retreat and how it benefits the communities that you visit and dental professionals.
We have fallen in love with a small village in the northern Dominican Republic jungle, it's called El Valle. The locals live off of fishing, farming, and tourism and have no access to dental care. The community is growing with wellness-driven boutique hotels, and 1-2 times a year we bring 15-20 dental professionals to this magical place to offer the locals free dental care and to offer the dentists the opportunity to reconnect to their mission; their why, what drives them at the core. For more info check out dentalyogis.com or follow @dentalyogis and @revivemission on Instagram.
Can you shed some light on the mouth-body connection? What should we know, what should we practice?
The mouth is a reflection of the rest of the body. We've gotten pretty good at diagnosing pre-diabetes and early stages of heart disease just from dental examinations alone. The World Health Organization published that 3 out of every 5 humans die from chronic inflammatory diseases globally, and this was pre-covid! In other words, stress is our greatest killer, and to change this we need to slow down and shift the focus to mindfulness.
We believe that everything can be a drug or medicine, in other words, everything we consume or encounter can be harmful or medicinal. What best distinguishes the two is the underlying intention. For example, consuming a meal with the intention of breaking bread and celebrating with loved ones has an entirely different effect on the body compared to eating for the sake of numbing/escaping a stressful and overwhelming day. In the former, you're likely to consume the food slower and digest it much better. When the underlying intention is driven by the desire to be more immersed and engaged in your current life experience, the outcome is more likely to be medicinal.
What other self-care practices do you have that support you in feeling your best?
I, Cristian, love to say, "the quality of your life is predicated by the quality of your breathing." Nothing has impacted my life more profoundly than taking conscious control of my breathing. In the morning we practice tumo style, deep and fast, breathing to speed up the heart rate and overcome anxiety-driven discomfort. Then throughout the rest of the day, we make a conscious effort to practice deep, slow, and intentional breathing and we've found it to greatly enhance our sense of presence.
We've come to notice that most people are breathing short, fast, and shallowly almost all the time, and this is the hallmark of chronic stress.
How you breathe is how you live!
How do you end your day?
We like to put a hard stop on discussing work matters and then snuggle on our couch to either watch a show (with blue-light-blocking glasses) or share our inspirations of the day :)