A Reflection on Previous Action Research Learning – 2017 – A Holistic/Whole Initial Journey into Dental Health Nutrition. Part 1.

Am I a holistic practitioner? what is a holistic practitioner? Should it be renamed? And, if so, to what? Our professional guidance alludes to some of the answers. I started to feel a change come upon me several years ago and this was a part of my first attempt at moving forward where there seemed no external learning available from primary or secondary dental sources. The journey took shape in the form of Action Research which is similar to Inquiry Based Learning (see the menu for information regarding this under Action Research and Life Long Learning).

In 2017 I completed an Action Research project and presented it to a professional audience twice, in Nelson and Auckland. I had undertaken similar research before and presented and published. This, however was slightly different as I was quite a way out of my professional comfort zone. Learning journeying into other health related subject matter, namely systematic, metabolic and nutritional topics was like a swim in the wild deep waters.

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I can honestly say that there wasn’t much more I could have done better in terms of content. Delivery was awkward, I’m good at that. I was pleased that it went beyond the dental aspects and explored more of the nutritional and political aspects of the debate. Since then a lot more has been written, discussed and debated and moving on to the next project I feel it needs to so still dwell on the previous a little to incorporate new learning experiences. The project really enlightened me with new knowledge, a lot was new and has since been incorporated into evolving my oral health facilitation in a stronger way. Moreover it has deeply enshrined in me the oral, systemic, nutritional and lifestyle model of improving oral health with the link to well-being and nutritional behaviour changes in the dental context. There seems so much more to learn and this I will now try to do.

Moving Forward

Where is my next learning journey? I’m struggling a little to find the way ahead. There appear to be a few routes where my “weaknesses” or “learning needs” are going to be targeted.

  1. Learning more about optimal nutrition, fasting and various beneficial dietary trends and behaviours.
  2. Oral and gut microbiome, the connection between them and the negative and beneficial effects of optimal / sub-optimal nutrition ( energy dense nutritionally dense foods ), sleep, lifestyle behaviour change adaptation and well-being.
  3. Mental health improvement in relation to dental health improvement.
  4. Oral Myology.

I have now moved to Nelson, I’ve left a really good practice in Blenheim with a great team and have been amazingly fortunate to find another. I’m especially looking forward to learning about oral facial myology and working with dentists, orthodontic auxillaries and all the support staff at Quin Dental. A very big thanks goes to Deb Pratt and very good friend and ama.zing colleague, I owe you more than one. My journey continues.





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