Changing Lives One Whole Smile at a Time: diet & dental

Originally from Oregon, Dr. Brion Long is the visionary mind behind SmileWorks. But he is not your typical pediatric dentist/orthodontist. I had the honor of interviewing him to find out more about what makes this fascinating fellow tick.

Drawn to the health field earlier in life, the seed to study dentistry was planted as a high school student. Dr. Long completed a residency program at the University of Florida in orthodontics before making his move to Tallahassee and forming SmileWorks. The venue comprises of a modern architectural style that is spacious, clean, and designed with patient comfort in mind.

In addition to the state-of-the-art facility, SmileWorks offers unique features like having both dentistry and orthodontics (adults too) accessible at the same location- a huge parent win! The like-minded and caring staff of 22 helps to fulfill the envisioned patient-centered-care model. Dr. Long designed the building ensuring an efficient operation, providing value to as many people as possible, all while offering high-quality service. While dental disease afflicts as many as 7/10 children, Dr. Long’s heart is to help as many children as feasible.

One of the most unique services SmileWorks offers includes laser fillings. The procedure works on the mechanism of pulsing a tooth whose nerve fibers send messages to the brain, but the overloaded messages result in a virtually pain-free experience. Here is what a mom of 11 has to say about her children’s experiences with Dr. Long.

“The new laser technology had the procedure done in about 15 minutes. No Novocain, no shots, no all-day numbness, no biting tongues, or spilling drinks out of the mouth. I was thoroughly impressed.”

Tammy B.
Relaxed patient getting shot-free laser filling from Dr. Brion Long and Dental Assistant.  
Photo credit: Tammy B.
Relaxed patient getting shot-free laser filling from Dr. Brion Long and Dental Assistant.
Photo credit: Tammy B.

Dr. Long is a firm believer in nutrition directly affecting dental health. The lack of the right kinds of fibrous foods in a child’s diet can prevent jaw structures from forming properly. Just like outdoor sunshine (20 minutes a day is recommended by pediatric eye experts) is quintessential in proper eye development and to avoid myopia/near-sightedness, Dr. Long insists that the jaw needs to be exercised with the proper movements and pressure provided from chewing nutritious foods. When a child does not obtain proper nutrients and fiber, not only can jaw shape and size be adversely affected, but this can lead to mental challenges such as not sleeping well and/or ADHD.

Acting as a faculty member, Dr. Long has participated in multiple weeklong mission trips to Guatemala serving with a team of 30 from the Christian Dental Society, where 200 locals were served per day. Village people in need walked as much as 10-15 miles or stayed overnight to make sure they were one of the first few hundred in line to ensure a free dental treatment that day. Otherwise, it might cost an entire month’s wage to have a tooth pulled. It was a grounding experience for him to see people with so very little to have found so much happiness in life and how quickly an empty water jug can become a makeshift soccer ball to a shy, young child eager to play with friends.

Though all of these things are rather impressive, it was originally, “I’m on a 40-day juice fast”, that first got my undivided attention. Dr. Long is an avid influencer among his staff, with roughly 25% having at least tried juicing. “They think I’m crazy, but they know I’m right”.

There are many things that go on behind the scenes both in and out of the office. For example, when there are choices, Dr. Long will often source upgraded dental supplies to help further protect his patient’s health by minimizing exposures. He enjoys looking for organizations to serve locally in the community that can benefit from local dental care missions. But his most intentional life mission is to “treat the whole person, not just the teeth”. 

To find out more, please visit https://smileworkstally.com/ for pediatric dentistry and all-age orthodontics. Extra COVID-19 precautions and are in place.

Kathryn van Zwieten is a Natural Health & Life Coach, Researcher, Lecturer, Author, Creative Chef, and Executive Director of Healing Harvest, L.L.C. Known as a visionary and entrepreneur, Kathryn fuses her high creativity and passion to bring the education of natural and restorative healing to many.  She inspires others to live a healthy lifestyle, by having learned from her own miraculous healings and those of her children, as she shares the latest scientific truths and giftedly guides others to fill in missing gaps in their own health journey. Helping others achieve their ‘highest human potential’ is her mission. Her favorite question is, “What is humanly possible?”- because she is ready to trail blaze to find out. 

Kathryn’s most passionate areas of interest include human brain development beginning in the womb, biological pathway communication (cellular and relational), mitochondrial restoration, the gut/brain axis connection,
epigenetics/nutrigenomics, genetic SNPs, consciousness and quantum physics.   

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