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AUDIO - HSP #182 - Chris Kammer
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VIDEO - HSP #182 - Chris Kammer
Dr. Kammer shares how he continually finds joy despite major professional (and persona)l set backs.
For more than 20 years, Dr. Chris Kammer has been at the forefront of emerging technologies and approaches in dentistry, and has become America’s most active advocate for the “oral systemic” approach of disease prevention. A founding member of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, Dr. Kammer has spent his career introducing and implementing technologies that have revolutionized dental treatment – changing lives, improving systemic health, and creating beautiful smiles. His work with the oral systemic approach, a recent movement in medicine and dentistry that improves general health by optimizing oral health, has helped many of his patients gain increased resistance to chronic disease, including heart disease, stroke, diabetes, some types of cancer, and Alzheimer’s, as well as pre-term birth, and obesity. His work in cosmetic dentistry has helped to change dental protocol in America and abroad.
Dr. Kammer’s work has been presented at numerous dental conferences, conventions, and seminars, and has been published in leading dental journals. He is also on the technology team for Dental Products Report. In recent years he has been a passionate educator in the media and in professional forums about the importance of the oral systemic approach. His Hygiene Transformation seminar was the first in the country to train dentists on performing in-office blood testing and how it relates to dentistry and systemic health.
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Howard Farran: It is a huge, huge honor to be interviewing Chris Kammer today, right, Kammer, that’s how you say it?
Chris Kammer: Yeah, let’s go with that. That’s correct.
Howard Farran: I was in love with your father probably a decade before I met you. I think your father seriously was one of the most amazing men in dentistry. He founded, didn’t he found like five different dental groups and associations?
Chris Kammer: Yeah. He founded the American Academy of Dental Group Practice. He founded the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry and that’s enough I guess.
Howard Farran: Yeah. That’s just amazing. Was that hard growing up under the shadow? Here, you are a young boy trying to find your own way and be a dentist and your dad is like this amazing dentist?
Chris Kammer: Yeah. I always admired him and always respected what he did. Frankly, I wouldn’t go on into dentistry if I wouldn’t have appreciated what he had been doing in his field and how he lived his life and I’m glad I did.
Howard Farran: I’m sorry you didn’t long enough to see the day. Now, they have their first woman president of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, my friend Joyce Bassett who lives in the same town I do, north of me.
Chris Kammer: Yes, absolutely. I know Joyce. I know a lot of those people from the early years. He kind of dragged me along for the founding meeting. He said, "We’re going to Vegas. I want to start an academy", and so I went along for the ride.
Howard Farran: What year was that?
Chris Kammer: Was it 30? Let me think, how old are they? Are they 30 years old?
Howard Farran: Are they 30?
Chris Kammer: Wow. It was when it started. They just celebrated a milestone last year I think so I think it’s been 30 years, yeah.
Howard Farran: On the other one, the American Academy of Dental Group Practice, that’s still in existence too?
Chris Kammer: Yes it is, yeah.
Howard Farran: Yeah. Who would have guessed, when he started that that someday, group practice would have turned into corporate dentistry, groups of sizes. I wonder if you ever imagined that far. He’s quite a visionary.
Chris Kammer: I think he did imagine it because quite frankly, that’s where dentistry was going. He was always way ahead of the curve and he decided to get out of it when it became very somewhat corporate and he decided, he preferred to practice on his own and that was when he decided to move in the direction of cosmetic dentistry, changed the name of our practice to Center for Cosmetic Dentistry and never looked back.
Howard Farran: You started really your own, you started the American Academy for Oral Systemic Health?
Chris Kammer: Yes, I did.
Howard Farran: That’s going to be bigger and more important than the AACD and group practice because that is, if I can think of anything that’s changed the biggest and the most in the 20 years I’ve been a dentist from '87 to 2015, it’s the fact that dentistry, when I got to school, dentists weren’t even doctors, they weren’t even considered part of the human body. We were like this detached iPhone in your pocket.
Chris Kammer: Yeah.
Howard Farran: People pull out their wallet, their car keys and their mouth and I still think it’s quite insane. You’ve done a lot of stuff with it, the troops with the Halloween Candy BuyBack, that’s for the troops.
Chris Kammer: Yes, absolutely.
Howard Farran: Those poor boys come home and they’re all in the age, only have two disease, wisdom teeth and dental decay and their insurance doesn’t cover mental health or dental disease. It’s like how can those guys sit there in Congress and see all those boys that serve coming back with post-traumatic stress and all this stuff and not cover the psychiatrist and at their age, with wisdom teeth coming in and cavities around the mouth, not covering their dental?
Chris Kammer: Yeah.
Howard Farran: That’s just crazy and that’s part of that whole mentality that the brain, how can health insurance not cover the brain and the teeth?
Chris Kammer: I’m glad you mentioned that.
Howard Farran: You’re on the forefront of changing that and I applaud you for that.
Chris Kammer: Thank you Howard. It always seemed odd to me that at some point, somebody said, "Okay, here’s what we’re going to do. We’re going to have everybody who wants to take care of their mouth go move in that direction and the rest of the body, they’ll all go that way and it’s like who separated the mouth from the body? What we’re trying to do is put the mouth back into the body and work together with the medical community because really, the mouth is absolutely the first place to start with health and it’s connected to the only place that’s connected to all of the serious diseases that are killing people every day.
If your mouth health is poor, if you’ve got periodontal disease or bacteria or any of the bugs that originate in the mouth, you’re going to be more at risk for heart disease, stroke, diabetes, pancreatic cancer, Alzheimer's, arthritis, it just touches so many things. It’s just mind-blowing to me that the medical community and the dental community aren’t working in sync with one another but that’s one of the missions of the American Academy for Oral Systemic Health is that to bring that altogether and work together for the best interest and for the best health of the patients that we serve.
Howard Farran: Actually, I spent a lot of time looking into that and it turns out that the architectural engineers and the architects say that your physical environment really affects your mental health and all this and I’ve long been clamoring that if you’re going to spend basically a third of your waking life in a dental office, why is your dental office 1,000 square feet and then your home or relaxation is 3,000 to 5,000 square feet? Why don’t you just make your dental office a little bigger? It was actually back in Baltimore where the dentist needed an upright chair and the physicians needed a lay down bed and from that architectural constraint, they separated them.
Chris Kammer: Weird.
Howard Farran: It came down to an architect and a building design and we needed to set up and we stand up with our patients sitting upright and they wanted lay down beds and that was just a weird fork on the road.
Chris Kammer: We got to move away from that because the health of the mouth is just impacting overall body health and the studies show that you’re more at risk for all those serious diseases and a lot of people don’t take it all that seriously. I think the thing that kind of moved me in that direction, Howard, was that at one point, I started getting really, really interested of why we were doing cosmetic dentistry.
One of the things that I noticed, maybe mine was the only practice but occasionally, there would be a lot of people with bleeding gums. You know what I’m saying? In other words, that’s the one disease that never seem to get under control and nobody ever seem to care much about getting under control or they thought it wasn’t possible, like they’ve given up. I got all focused on trying to do everything possible to get periodontal disease under control because it just seemed to be the most out of control, undiagnosed and untreated disease of all and that bears out to be true because all the major organizations would say that 70% to 80% of the population has got gum disease, the ADA, the AGD, the surgeon general, so we know there’s that much gum disease out there.
When you look at the insurance statistics, dental practices are acting like everybody is healthy because everybody gets a prophy which by definition is to be done on healthy mouths to prevent disease, but every dental practice that you ask will say, "Even out of the prophies that come in, about 80% of those people are bleeding", which coincides with the 80% that all those organizations say have gum disease and nobody is doing anything about it so it’s kind of a supervised neglect thing where they still keep doing the prophies on the bleeding gum patients not doing anything to get that gum disease under control and when gum disease has life and death ramifications, it’s time to put up the red flag or something. We need a five-alarm fire. It’s insane.
I don’t understand why even dentistry as an even organized industry isn’t reading our profession the right act about, we got to help people live longer. We’ve got to get gum disease under control. There’s more that we can do. I think that they know that nothing is being done because they know the stats. If I was 60 minutes, if I wanted to bust the profession of dentistry, I’d get all the major organizations that say okay, there’s all this gum diseases. Roughly 80% of all people have gum disease, right? Then I’d say, "Dentists, you’re looking to us like you’re not treating it because the insurance statistics say that you’re treating 90% or more of the people as if they don’t have gum disease. Those are completely opposite." I don’t get it.
Howard Farran: It’s interesting because the gum tissue is about the surface area of the palm. Anybody would know that if their palm was raw and bleeding and oozing blood and bloody that that could be a source of infection. When you try to explain that this could be an oral systemic issue, I find it ironic that when the, I think one of the most progressive people on this is the American Academy of Periodontitis, they are always having great social media things about this and that and their biggest detractors are dentists. It’s the same thing with every state. I can’t give a flu shot but a tech at Walgreens, not even a pharmacist can give a flu shot.
When you go to the state board and try to get dentists have a permission to give a flu shot, since we see that elderly people so often and we could be saying to grandma and grandpa, "Did you get your flu shot?" Who stands there? Our own dentist. They say, "Thanks pal."
Chris Kammer: Yeah.
Howard Farran: Yeah. Thanks for that. Dentists are the ones at the state board level making us more mechanics when they don’t let us give a flu vaccine, HPV for oral cancer. I can’t even give an HPV vaccine but they can die from oral cancer.
Chris Kammer: Yeah. That doesn’t make any sense, yeah.
Howard Farran: The bodies are starting to stack up. Now, it’s amazing how many dentists that then say, "Yeah, I know." I’m sitting there thinking, okay, that girl was in your office every six months for a cleaning for 10 years and you never suggested to mom that she had HPV vaccine and you didn’t offer, you didn’t say, "It’s a $10 copayment. We’ll vaccinate you right now." Look at Delta Dental, they don’t even cover an oral cancer screening. Could you imagine if health insurance didn’t cover a woman's cancer screening downstairs?
Chris Kammer: Yeah.
Howard Farran: They’d be outraged. The CEO would probably have to resign, but in dentistry, it’s like, that’s about right.
Chris Kammer: Yeah. As you move down this road where you’re offering people more screening and more diagnosis and more therapy that insurance doesn’t cover, that’s always a big challenge but people have a right to know, they have a right to have it offered to them. If they say yes or no, that’s their deal, but we do a lot of scaling and root planning on patients that would not be considered candidates by insurance companies because I think insurance companies say, "You got to have X number of 5 millimeter pockets and this and that and the other thing", but look, if they’ve got bleeding and they’ve got bacteria, that’s infection and that’s a reason to disrupt that biofilm going below the gum line and by the definition of even scaling, you’ve got to scale and root plan those patients even if they don’t have the stereotypical thought of someone else that needs scaling and root planning, like massive amounts of tartar.
A lot of this is microscopic, you can’t even see it but you’ve got to go in there and disrupt that biofilm to get rid of that disease, to get that gum disease under control and to get that microbiological level, those pathogens down to a level where the body can tolerate them. That’s another thing that dentists aren’t even, this is growing now but the other side of periodontal disease that dentists can’t see with the naked eye, Howard, of course is what are the level of pathogens in the saliva. How many of those bad bugs are having a party in your mouth and how serious are they? That’s the size of periodontal disease that most people are not looking at especially periodontists, Howard.
Howard Farran: The evidence-based dental movement is not very humble and the fact that they discover a new species of bacteria in the mouth every quarter. Every year, they find four new bugs. People have to realize that 1,000 years from now, we’re going to look pretty … look at my life experience. When I went to [Creighton 00:13:31] from '80 to '83, they taught me that an atom was 99.9999% empty space and all the mass was in the nucleus and the electron. Now, it’s like, wait a minute. Excuse me. Now, we say that dark matter and dark energy contain 95% of the mass of the universe, you can’t see it, and that electron is flying around and basically this massively dense thing.
Who knows what they’re going to look 1,000 years from now but today, you have to be humble and say, "Okay, we don’t know everything but we know one thing." This is the problem. Someone asked this, when you’re talking about a stereotypical dentist, we have a natural selection, we only get picked because we ace calculus, physics, chemistry and biology.
Chris Kammer: Yeah.
Howard Farran: If someone said to me, "Who is the least stereotypical dentist that you know?" [Inaudible 00:14:29], you’re tall, dark and handsome, you’re a dancer, you’re a musician, you’re a singer, you’re an artist, you started out as the advertising dentist.
Chris Kammer: Yeah.
Howard Farran: That dentist listening to you who knows your story which has been an incredible journey, they’re saying, "Yeah. Chris, come on. You could sell snow to an Eskimo." How does an introvert scientist, engineer geek dentist explain thorough because if their interns only pay us for a cleaning and then you say they need a deep cleaning, a special cleaning and they have to pay out of pocket, they just pick up their purse and walk out the door. I imagine you can probably sell any damn thing you want to be. What tips could you give my thousands of introvert listeners on their way to work about how to get more, advertising externally is what you, the advertising that was, but advertising internally is selling to the patient. They don’t even like that word.
Chris Kammer: Yeah. This is all about advertising internally because I’ve tried to advertise externally to save people's lives with periodontal therapy, that bombed like a LED balloon. That’s not one of those things that people automatically want. It’s not like life-enhancing, in their mind, smile enhancement sexy kind of a thing so it was a waste of time, but I once offered people $50 cash if they could come in to my office and have healthy gums. If they didn’t have gum disease, I’m going to give you $50 cash. I gave it out to one person, okay? But I still didn’t feel that that was, when I say I have an ad on the radio that played saying that gum disease could lead to your early death, I had people calling up and complaining that that’s too much hype and you’re just trying to scare people and they hang up. I’ve been through all of that.
What I found that works the best, Howard, is first of all, you have to get the team to care. The team has to believe. I have a team speech, I would be happy to send anybody that’s interested in this because you have to get the team on fire and they have to fully believe that you’re not just all of a sudden doing more periodontal therapy because you’re looking to make some more money from the hygiene department, you’re doing more periodontal therapy because indeed, gum disease, periodontal disease is the most undiagnosed and untreated disease on the planet and that it’s even in the Guinness Book of World Records as the most common form of inflammation in the entire body so you got to go after it.
I think once the team is on fire for it, that that’s a matter of making people own their disease. One of the challenges is you got to turn bloody prophies, right? You’ve been doing every six months seeing them and you’ve been doing a bloody prophy on 80% of your patients and now, you got to turn it into periodontal therapy which might be four quadrants of scaling and root planning and send them home with all kinds of home care products and following up with them every single month to get that bleeding under control. I just try to help them own it. Show them the bleeding. We do a lot of saliva tests. Show them the out of control bacteria levels. Let them know that you’re passionate about it.
Here’s one thing that I think would help. If you bring the passion and you bring the statistics and you bring the information to them, good news is nowadays, a lot of people have heard that the mouth health affects the body health and I sometimes will go even beyond the mouth health saying that, "Mr. [Jones 00:17:58], did anyone in your family have heart attack, stroke, high blood pressure, diabetes?" If they have that and then they have the gum disease as well, I’ll say, "Okay, I’m going to recommend a couple of tests that I want you to get at your doctor or we can take them here as well because gum disease is a very common inflammation, it’s a stress on the body, it wears and tears on your circulatory system and it could take years off your life. If you’ve also got a relative that’s had some sort of systemic illness, you’re even more at risk."
I lay it out to them so that they can make a decision because insurance may not pay for what we’re recommending. Ultimately, they’re going to make the decision. I’ve also learned that I don’t get broken down and sad if they don’t take it the first time, but the message never changes and I’ll still love my patients and I’ll still do that prophy but I might have them sign a release that we’ve made a recommendation for the therapy to get their gum disease under control. They’ve chosen not to do it and we’ll still polish their disease if they want us to.
Howard Farran: I’ve seen a lot of things change in my half century on this planet, one of them I’ve been [crimping 00:19:14] about forever finally changed. I always thought it was a racket that I couldn’t go to a place and order my own blood test but you had to go through the healthcare doctors, racket, [kick back 00:19:26] system and now, you can walk into any blood place in Phoenix, Arizona and order your own test and I think that’s a first step of breaking down the racket. What saliva test do you take in your office? How does that work?
Chris Kammer: Yeah. We do the oral DNA test which tests for the top 11 pathogens known to be harmful in gum disease. That’s basically a 30-second swish and spit into a little vial, pop it in the mail and a week later, you get a profile, I think I’ve got one here. You get a color profile which shows you the pathogens. I’m just going to …
Howard Farran: What’s the website of that? Www. what?
Chris Kammer: What is the website of this? I’ll tell you in a second here. You can look it up, it’s OralDNA. OralDNA.
Howard Farran: Are you familiar with the company or the founder, any of that stuff?
Chris Kammer: I’m not familiar with the founder. Tom Nabors was involved who’s a dentist and he was a researcher about all of the science behind this so he was very, very involved and I think he sold the company, but it was originally, I don’t know if it was founded by a dentist but it was driven by a dentist and Tom Nabors would know more about that. He’s been a huge friend of AAOSH, the American Academy for Oral Systemic Health. He was so instrumental in teaching us the science behind the saliva diagnostics.
Howard Farran: Can you send him an email and tell him I want to podcast him on this?
Chris Kammer: Absolutely.
Howard Farran: Right on.
Chris Kammer: I will do that, yeah. He’s a genius and he’s been such a friend to our organization. He’s the one that hooked us up with Bale and Doneen. Bale and Doneen are the heart attack, stroke risk reduction specialists. Their recent book is called Beat the Heart Attack Gene. They are the ones that actually made my light go on for the first time where I really learned the oral systemic connection from one of the tests that they do which is called the PLAC test, the P-L-A-C test which basically is a test that check an enzyme in your blood that if it’s at a high level, you’re about ready to have a blow-out. A blow-out means that the plaque that is lining your artery or the plaque that’s lining the arteries of your heart, that it’s just about ready to poke through that little layer that’s about one cell layer thick into your vessel, into your artery causing a clot, thrombus, blockage or a stroke if it’s in your carotid artery.
If that enzyme level is high, that tells you you’re really at risk. You’re at strong, strong risk for an event. One of the amazing things they found out was is that getting gum disease under control was one of the very, very few things that actually could bring that PLAC score, that enzyme score down, and it didn’t go down with anything, with cholesterol reduction or smoking cessation. Periodontal disease was one of the only things.
Howard Farran: You can actually buy a kit from Volkswagen to make that test level go down.
Chris Kammer: Really?
Howard Farran: Yeah. They just got busted for cheating on their emissions test. Bada-bing, bada-bing, bada-bing. How much does the saliva test cost? You have them swish in it, that’s a solution they swish, spit it back in and then you send it back to …
Chris Kammer: Right. Yeah. It’s a 30-second swish and spit test. It’s a $117-test to the office. In our office, we mark that up just a couple few bucks, it’s $137 in the office. There is some handling of that, some follow-up is required but it’s a great test and we show our patients what kind of bacteria is living in their mouth. Here is the interesting thing too, if they have high levels of bacteria and some of the dangerous levels of bacteria, what they do is they’ll show you how much bacteria you have in your mouth and they’ll show you a threshold line above which is considered that that’s where the tissue damage occurs. I’m going to just pull this one over, but this is what one of those looks like. I don’t know if you can see this or not.
Howard Farran: Yes, absolutely. Very nice.
Chris Kammer: Okay. Let me make sure I don’t have a name showing there. Okay, that horizontal bar you see there above all those columns, that’s what …
Howard Farran: It does say your name on it. It says Chris Kammer and it says something about chlamydia.
Chris Kammer: No. Howard, you’re cracking me up. Okay, we’ll start the jokes real soon because I did stand-up comedy. I don’t know if you know that.
Howard Farran: Of course I know that. You have your own YouTube videos doing that.
Chris Kammer: That’s right. I’m fearless, okay. Anyway, here are the levels of bacteria. Now, this was a dentist by the way, okay? What dentists don’t know is they have high levels of these bacteria. Now, this one has a high level of P. gingivalis, okay? I’m pointing to it right there I think, and this is over the threshold line. Did you know that a high level of P. gingivalis puts you at a 13 times higher risk for a heart attack?
Howard Farran: Wow.
Chris Kammer: That’s a study. That’s a study that we share. We share that in AAOSH, I share it with my gums of steel clients. This is serious stuff and you want to let your patients know that especially if they’ve had someone else in their family that has had issues with heart attack, stroke, cholesterol, blood pressure, whatever. Now, here’s the other thing that’s interesting. Because this bacteria is transmissible, husbands and wives have very similar profiles.
Howard Farran: I know. You’re talking right now, I think the last podcast, we had 7,000 listeners just on iTunes and you’re talking to dentists who will see the mom every three months for 10 years for gum disease and they’ve never even seen their husband.
Chris Kammer: Yeah.
Howard Farran: You’re like dude, if you’re treating her for gonorrhea every three months, after 10 years wouldn’t you say, "We think you’re banging someone with gonorrhea. Who are you sleeping with?" Do you think it would cross their mind once? Then you say that to him and they look at you like a deer staring at the headlights. We have a planet that all understands that you can pass a bacteria or a virus below the belt and it’s never crossed their mind that they can do it above the belt as they’re sitting there kissing their newborn babies on the mouth.
Chris Kammer: Yeah. Right. If you’re kissing your baby or your spouse and you got this load of bacteria in your mouth, that’s transmissible, that’s going right into your spouse or your loved one or whoever you’re smooching on. Now, even if you were dating, wouldn’t you want to say, "Okay, show me your oral DNA report because I’d rather be kissing somebody like this …
Howard Farran: Right. That’s mine by the way. If you’re looking at this, that’s mine.
Chris Kammer: That is Howard's by the way.
Howard Farran: That is mine.
Chris Kammer: It doesn’t mean I want to kiss you Howard. No offense.
Howard Farran: Oh, come on Chris. It’s legal now. All the [inaudible 00:26:40] said once it was legal that straight people would start doing it. Yeah, it’s just crazy times we live in. It’s just crazy that you still see, I got a 3-year old granddaughter and it blows me away how complete strangers or people that know, I just saw them in my office three days ago and they want to kiss little [Taylor 00:27:04] on the mouth and it was just like wow.
Chris Kammer: Or they still clean off the pacifier by licking it off and sticking it back in there.
Howard Farran: Yeah.
Chris Kammer: No. Howard, this area of dentistry, you alluded to it earlier but cosmetic dentistry took off. It was huge. It was a giant wave that swept over dentistry and it was wonderful. People came back to the dentist for something they really, really wanted. That was wonderful. Then the economy changed and it sort of tapered off and now it’s still there but it’s sort of ebbs and flows. This area of dentistry is only going to get more and more important, more and more concrete, it’s not going to go away. Do you remember when, there must have been some point in your life, Howard, where somebody said to you, "You’re just a dentist", because there were doctors and then there was the lowly dentist, right?
As time goes by, this lowly dentist is becoming more and more of a mouth doctor and more and more important in the ability to reduce people's risk for systemic disease that this doctor is supposed to be doing but they can’t do it without the help of a dentist. We’re finally getting to the point where we’re like, okay, we’re real doctors now and we’re even beyond and some point, they’ll be going to the dentist first to get clearance there and that’s happening now. Get healthy here first and then get everything else together.
What blows my mind is that the medical community can’t help, people entrust their lives to the medical community. They say, "Help me reduce my risk for heart attack, stroke, diabetes, cancer, blah-blah-blah, whatever, all these things", and yet there’s a major component that’s in our arena. We got to start talking about it, we got to start banging the drum because that’s real, that’s not going to go away and if we’re not working together with the medical community, then the public that we serve is at risk.
Howard Farran: Yeah. The Australians are learning something that I said 20 years ago there and I had been saying it my whole career here is that when you talk to Arizona senators or you talk to Senator John McCain and you go out on some Arizona citizens for better dental health, charity thing and he’s there with his wife or whatever, they’ll tell you that they get a lot of complaints that there must not be very many dentists because it’s hard to get in and they’re not open in the evenings or weekends and the Australian people complain about this forever and the Australian government finally took action and they let in 1,000 foreign dentists from Ireland and Europe and England and all these different places.
Right now in Arizona, if you have a toothache on a Sunday, you’re more likely to get gored to death by a unicorn or hit by a meteorite than find someone to help you, but if you broke your leg, your physician friends, they got hospitals 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and if it’s Christmas or Hanukkah and you need a doctor, they’re there waiting, but a dentist is going to get zero sympathy from their legislators when their patients are saying, "I broke my tooth on a Saturday night. I couldn’t get in until Monday afternoon." Americans aren’t going to wait 48 hours for a dentist to see them.
You said something very profound that really like, slap me up the head that I never really put into together. My two older sisters went into their Catholic nunnery straight out of high school and my favorite, growing in Catholic school, my two favorite Catholic priest is Martin Luther because he was a protester, he was a renegade guy like …
Howard Farran: He was a Radical. Yeah.
Chris Kammer: He was the first protester and started the protestants and all that stuff. He married a nun that was in my sister's nunnery, cloistered Carmelite monks. Anyway, Mother Teresa was my favorite female Catholic and you said that you’re not afraid of rejection and I realized that Mother Teresa, my favorite poem, Mother Teresa, anyway really answers rejection. She says, "People are often unreasonable, irrational and self-centered. Forgive them anyway." If you’re kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives, be kind anyway like you’re at about, I’m going to save your life with gum disease.
If you are successful, you’ll win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies. Succeed anyway. If you are honest and sincere, people may deceive you. Be honest and sincere anyway. What you spent years creating, others could destroy overnight. Create anyway. If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous. Be happy anyway. The good you do today will often be forgotten. Do good anyway. Give the best you have and it will never be enough. Give your best anyway, and the final analysis was never between you and God or you and your patients, it was never between you and them anyway.
That’s a neat deal where maybe a dentist will be able to handle rejection better if they just think of Mother Teresa saying there, okay, you did your job. You explained all this. They rejected you, people are batshit crazy.
Chris Kammer: Don’t take it personally, right?
Howard Farran: Don’t take it personal.
Chris Kammer: Don’t take it personal. Yeah.
Howard Farran: You and I have done two most of does most brutal art forms ever which is stand-up comedy. The thing I love about stand-up comedy, I’ve done every comedy deal in Phoenix, in Scottsdale, [inaudible 00:32:15], sometimes, those comedians walk up stage and they just lose it. They ball and all of that, the heckler or whatever, whatever and you just have to go out there and you just have to ride. Okay, so you get a heckler. Okay, so some guy doesn’t think you’re funny.
Chris Kammer: Yeah.
Howard Farran: Do your work anyway. It’s brutal. It’s brutal.
Chris Kammer: In regards to rejection, if you really, really enjoy being alive, like one of the questions I like to ask people sometimes is a question that no one ever asks them, why do you want to keep on living? Why? What are you doing that makes you want to get up every day and keep on living? Some people might say, "I want to make sure my kids are okay", but it is fun to bring joy to the world, to bring health to the world to make the world a better place. I know that’s something that you’ve always encouraged dentists to do is that you always said, "You might want to complain about the ADA, but go on there and make it better."
I like the thing that Deepak Chopra said where he said, "When you stand on the edge of the cliff taking a chance", whether you’re trying to educate someone to proceed with their periodontal therapy or whatever or you’re going to do a stand-up comedy routine or you’re just going to go be the first one to dance at the dance because everyone will be looking at you but oh my gosh, I hope I don’t look stupid. When you take that chance, you stand at the precipice of all possibilities which is really, really exciting because you’d never know what cool thing can happen when you take that chance.
A lot of dentists always wondered like, Kammer, why did you go on American Idol? You’re a nut bag. They said, "You look so ridiculous. You demeaned the prophies." Now Howard, some people said this, "You demeaned the profession by going on American Idol." For all the cool things that happened, for going on American Idol, I would recommend it to everybody and I have no fear. I always want the people that really want to challenge me to come, let’s talk about it because it’s really, sometimes, you have to get the dental message out there. You have to go through that door that says entertainment and that can get the message to somebody. I’ve never been afraid. Maybe I’m going to do it for you right now, Howard, I’m thinking my audition for American idol. Are you ready for that?
Howard Farran: Hell yeah.
Chris Kammer: All right, because honestly, I went on American Idol with a mission.
Howard Farran: Explain what American Idol is for our international viewers. This is downloaded in 206 countries so …
Chris Kammer: Okay. Wow. All right. American Idol is like, what’s that other show that Simon Cowell did but it didn’t take off? It’s a program, it’s a reality television program where they’re trying to find the best singer in the country. Who is going to be the next American Idol? Who is going to be the next superstar singing talent? Now, that’s been on for 15, I think it’s going to be the 14th or 15th year or might be the final year of it, but it was the number one show in America for many, many years so everybody know American Idol and everybody tried out for American Idol. They’d go to a big city and 10,000 people would show up to audition for their chance to be the next American Idol or to get on television and maybe have their audition show on television or whatever.
I always thought it would be fun to do that. Actually, my kids all wanted to audition as well, but by the time the day came to go audition, they backed out on me and I just said, "You know what, I got all worked up and ready to do this." They said no, I’m going anyway. Now, if I’m going to go to American Idol, I really thought I should bring the oral systemic message. The audition that I did was kind of like this, I got up there with a big giant toothbrush and a silver jacket and pants and I said, "You better get out the brush, get out the brush. Everybody, it’s time to brush because you’re about to lose your teeth up in here, up in here, started out with gum disease. Up in here, up in here. Drop somebody to his knees, up in here, up in here so we got to get you a toothbrush, rays of sunshine will appear and chase the dark clouds away.
We got to get you a toothbrush. The joy will astound you, this new world has found you now. Friends of mine, hey, the time is now to break those shackles that hold you down. Join me now as we reach up high. Reach up high. Touch the sky. That’s right Howard, I can’t lie. "We feel the power growing in our soul. New energy is going to take control because we got to get you a toothbrush. Rays of sunshine will appear and chase the dark clouds away. We got to get you a toothbrush. And now that I’ve helped you, help someone else too. Goodnight."
Now Howard, I might have been the first person to write the first love song for the toothbrush. Possibly. I don’t know, but I’m thinking maybe. Anyway, I knew I was going to be a novelty candidate on American Idol.
Howard Farran: Now toothbrushes, I was born and raised in Kansas before the toothbrush was invented because had it been anywhere like Kansas, it had been a teethbrush.
Chris Kammer: Rim shot. Boom. Okay. I want to open for you, Howard, what I …
Howard Farran: It’s so interesting, you’re so passionate, you’re so awesome that when you go to American Idol, you’re trying to bring your dental message. That’s so much passion and people would ask me, what did you like about stand-up? I just like stand-up but I figure they’re going to listen to a dentist and when they get that and listening to my routine, they learn more about oral health. If I go out there and do 40 jokes, 20 of them are dental-related. In fact, the number one question I get when I walk up that stage is, "Are you really a dentist?" I hand out my cards and I get patients. The closest bar to my house, Cactus Jack's, all their staff is my patient just because every time I perform there, no one believes people like you and me are dentists.
Chris Kammer: That’s true. That’s true especially when you’re out rocking and rolling and emceeing the rock concerts and doing the things that people just don’t expect you to be doing.
Howard Farran: I want to talk you down a little more specifics. When you’re doing the saliva test, will you buy this for $117, a swish for 30 seconds, you mail it out, is this more of an internal marketing where you already know what they need? Is this used primarily to increase treatment planning substance so they can see a third person endorsement that makes them own this disease, that they understand it?
Chris Kammer: It’s absolutely that. For those that are a little bit hesitant to go ahead with the therapy, it’s definitely a little bit of that. If they have other health issues, I want to make sure they don’t have a high level of aggregatibacter, actinomycetemcomitans which is the worst oral pathogen you could have in your mouth. That pathogen acts like, in the bloodstream, it goes up to the fat cells running through your bloodstream and it says, "Come here fat cell. Hold my hand. Nice to meet you. Come with me, we’re going to go into the lining of the artery." It actually helps fat cells go into the lining of the artery where they collect and start bulging out that artery where some day, it breaks through.
I want to show you people …
Howard Farran: Chris, I have to interrupt you, I got to get a hug from my oldest son. Eric, it’s the first time one of my sons [inaudible 00:40:21]. Say hi.
Eric Farran: How's it going?
Chris Kammer: Hey. Hello there son.
Howard Farran: That’s my oldest. Hey Eric, good to see you buddy.
Chris Kammer: He’s definitely got nice teeth Howard.
Howard Farran: He does, yes. The only four good moves I ever made was Eric, Greg, Ryan and Zach. They are just all four males and I’m so lucky that we all live in the same zip code. Does this change your diagnosis though? Is it more changing your diagnosis or the patient on it or a combination?
Chris Kammer: First of all, now I’ve got more of a definitive endpoint for gum disease. If someone says, "I want to make sure my gum disease is under control", that’s the thing. You just can’t. Sure, you could scale and root plan and use your ultrasonics and laser and maybe get rid of 99% of the bacteria, but some of those bacteria resist our best efforts. No, I need to know whether I need to put them on an antibiotic or not because a lot of those really bad bacteria, you remember that song [Shaft 00:41:23]? Shaft, you are a bad … Shaft is a bad mother, shut your mouth, right?
Howard Farran: Yeah.
Chris Kammer: These are bad mother bacteria and they’re so bad that they can resist your best efforts whether they’re getting the scaling and root planning, all the therapy and the patient's homecare is awesome, you may need extra efforts. You may need an antibiotic regimen to knock it out.
Howard Farran: Like what antibiotic?
Chris Kammer: It might be Metronidazole. It might be Metronidazole combined Amoxicillin. It might be Clarithromycin. It might be Clindamycin. Here’s the thing, Howard, everybody in dentistry is shooting blind because they’re going to say, "I think you got a gum infection. We’re just going to put you on Amoxicillin and then hope, cross our fingers that that does it", but now, you can customize it. When you got the ability to do a DNA analysis of their saliva and you know exactly what bacteria are present, there are 47 different potential combinations depending upon what bacteria you have present and at what levels they’re at so why wouldn’t you want to do the scientific customized approach instead of the shotgun approach?
This is a better way to get rid of the bacteria, find out what bacteria is there, know that some of them are living inside the tissue because they do, they migrate. They’re tissue-invasive so you can have the best periodontal therapy in the world and you might still have some of that bacteria living inside your gum tissue where it likes to go and you got to get at it systemically.
Howard Farran: For now, there’s no website address on that printout?
Chris Kammer: I think if you just do a Google search for OralDNA …
Howard Farran: I can do that.
Chris Kammer: It’s OralDNA Labs.
Howard Farran: Okay, OralDNA Labs. Oral …
Chris Kammer: Yeah. Check that out. Access Genetics is another name of the division of Access Genetics. OralDNA Labs.
Howard Farran: OralDNA Labs. All right. Very nice.
Chris Kammer: Is it oraldnalabs.com?
Howard Farran: Yes.
Chris Kammer: Okay. There you go. What’s really nice …
Howard Farran: They’re out of Minnesota, OralDNA Labs at Eden Prairie, Minnesota.
Chris Kammer: All right. Yeah.
Howard Farran: Interesting.
Chris Kammer: Right. Actually, I’m looking at the bottom page. You can just go to oraldna.com, so O-R-A-L-D-N-A.com.
Howard Farran: That’s kind of a risky name. The Europe changed from oral cancer to mouth cancer because if you Google anything with oral, you’d get 48 million porn site and so they changed it to mouth cancer.
Chris Kammer: Yeah. I wouldn’t know that Howard. Okay, leave it. Just leave it there.
Howard Farran: That’s funny. In comedy, you can’t joke about sex, religion, politics or violence. You stay away from sex, politics, religion and violence. You know what’s funny about that, whenever I do stand-up, they will say, "Dude, you’re the cleanest act in town. You never said the F word and you’re never talking about religion, sex and violence." Then you take the same act to a dental convention and then you’re like, "Man, that was too edgy. You’re too racist. That was …
Chris Kammer: You’re out of control.
Howard Farran: That was out of control. It’s like wow. Do the comedy club in Los Angeles on Sunset Boulevard and they’d say, "God, you’re just the cleanest act we’ve had in a year." Then take the same thing to the [inaudible 00:44:54] July, "I don’t know. That was just" … Humans are so affected by …
Chris Kammer: We can’t have that.
Howard Farran: Okay. I want to take you back a little bit. How do the advertising dentist, I want to ask you a two-part question.
Chris Kammer: Sure.
Howard Farran: You started out as the advertising dentist. How did that turn into the oral systemic dentist? Then on the second part of that question, how has advertising changed in your, you got to school in what, 1980? '81?
Chris Kammer: 1981, yeah.
Howard Farran: You’re coming up on your 25th year anniversary. Tell us first, how did you get into the advertising dentist and then how did that turn into the oral systemic, just your advertising and you realize this was your true passion, to prevent disease instead of …
Chris Kammer: Yeah, because I’ve never really been afraid of anything or anybody. I think a lot of dentists are very timid because they’re afraid of either what the dentist next door is going to think or that the organized dentistry might frown upon advertising. I always felt that advertising was another way of educating the patients as to what’s available for them. An advertisement might be the only dental education somebody gets in any given year. Now, I started doing this many, many years ago but advertising was really frowned upon and probably still is in some areas.
There are some very weird laws, not laws, restrictions on advertising if you’re a member of the ADA or if you’re part of a state society. They might come down on you for having your sign a certain size or, it’s just ridiculous.
Howard Farran: I’ve gotten almost six. I’ll never forget because Dentaltown is international and I’ll never forget some Hong Kong dentist that did my [30-day dental MBA 00:46:31] and he started doing all the sign and marketing and they suspended his license. He never even had an idea or a thought that it was illegal. The same thing has happened in Romania and all these other places and so yeah, it’s crazy. You know what what’s really cool, ADA was so foreign to me when I got out of school. They were just so from a different planet. Now, you have people like Maxine Feinberg who’s the president. She is actually cooler than you and me.
Chris Kammer: That’s good.
Howard Farran: Next one, Carol Summerhays, she’s got to be one of the most progressive, coolest people. Everything is really changing.
Chris Kammer: I’d really like to see something change so I’d like to see them get a little bit more bold and not be so worried about losing members and start talking about this oral systemic connection like it really is going to save people's lives and put dentistry in a whole new light that it’s never been in before. I’m rather impatient with them in regards to that.
Howard Farran: Maxine Feinberg, our president now, she’s a periodontist and you don’t get much bolder than a chic from New Jersey. That woman will give you a piece of her mind. She’s a no-hold-barred. Have you met with her?
Chris Kammer: I have not.
Howard Farran: Man, this would be the time. Then another person following her, Carol Summerhays, the same way, she’s from LA. These women are so progressive, they’re so like you and me and she’s a periodontist. I think the time is now that you should go from the American Idol to my American idol dentist because you got Maxine, you got both of her ears. She’d take your phone call. She’s that kind of woman.
Chris Kammer: Yeah. She’d be a great one to at least educate about AAOSH, the American Academy for Oral Systemic Health in ways that we could work together because I’m not opposed to the ADA, I just always felt that to have a voice in this arena that’s not afraid of the powers that be, we just had to become our own organization to start walking the talking and talking the talk and we do walk the talk. At our last meeting just about a week ago, we tested our members for saliva, we tested their blood for systemic inflammation, that’s the C-reactive protein, we [tested them 00:48:47] for A1c, we did a biophotonic scan of their carotenoids which is antioxidant level and we also tested their, we did the CIMT which is an ultrasound of the carotid arteries.
One of the things that I found over time through my Gums of Steel courses that I teach and then I’ve been doing this for anybody that takes a course from me as well, we do all those testing and I found that there’s interesting correlations between the levels of bacteria that people have and the systemic inflammation. C-reactive protein is like taking the systemic inflammation temperature of your body because your body could be on fire quietly. You may not feel it. Yet, when you have a high C-reactive protein level, that’s saying that your liver is kicking out this protein that’s saying something is on fire in this body. This body is burning down slowly and it could lead to an event.
To also check it, we check the carotid arteries because we see, all right, you have high level of P. gingivalis, high level of aggregatibacter, actinomycetemcomitans, those two deadly, deadly periodontal bacteria originate in the mouth. We see systemic inflammation, we also see plaques laying down in the arteries and sometimes, even soft plaques that tell us this is a person who’s got a high risk of having, I think a 40% risk of having an event in two years is pretty serious stuff, would you say, Howard?
Howard Farran: I’m 53. My dad died at 60. My mom's dad and my dad's dad both died at 60 so when you’re 53 and all of the male friends were dead at 60, hell yeah, you’re starting to figure this stuff out.
Chris Kammer: You want to start looking for early risk.
Howard Farran: Yeah, how little you know, when [inaudible 00:50:38] was telling me where they started really studying decay that by the time you get 5 millimeters down into a cavity, you don’t even have streptococcus mutans anymore, there are so many other different species. The San Diego Zoo has 4,200 species of animals on display and your mouth to your anus, that 30-foot tube has 12,000 species of bacteria, virus and fungi and they’re discovering a new species in just the mouth every three months. In that 30-foot tube, they’re discovering new species every week.
When some dentists consider and say, "There’s no oral systemic link to this and that", it’s like, okay, they’re finding these bacteria in Alzheimer's, hemorrhoid, plaque, they’re finding in all these places.
Chris Kammer: Right.
Howard Farran: You just know everything and you just absolutely know in the year 2015 that there’s no connection here.
Chris Kammer: Yeah. We’re also checking for spirochetes and these are, a couple on the hair, the treponemas. They’ve been found to be involved in dementia and other diseases and you wouldn’t even think that even pregnancy complications and fetal death. This is the stuff that we’re studying in the American Academy for Oral Systemic Health. This is the information that we show. These are the experts that we bring in at our meetings so it’s [genuine 00:52:02].
Howard Farran: Talk about your Gums of Steel live consulting and online programs.
Chris Kammer: I give my lectures online. It’s all prerecorded. I have modules, there’s six webinar modules and I’ve got all the materials, I’ve got the Gums of Steel manual. Basically, if you can’t come see me live and learn all this, get lit up by this passion for getting gum disease under control, getting bloody prophies under control, turning bloody prophies into periodontal therapies, doubling your periodontal therapy, I’ve even tripled periodontal therapies in offices within three months. Howard, it’s easy because you know it, it’s the most undiagnosed and untreated disease out there. It’s nothing but blue sky as far as my message and my training. Most offices need it.
I do live lectures, I’ve got a 6-hour presentation but you can get the whole presentation on the web. You can get my Gums of Steel manual which is basically the step-by-step manual as to how you walk your team through it. I’ve got all the materials, I’ve created materials where I’ve ...
Howard Farran: How much is the program?
Chris Kammer: The program is $9.95.
Howard Farran: Can I offer you, I feel humble to offer the advertising dentist any advertising information, but we have 202,000 members on Dentaltown. If you put the first module on Dentaltown, we put it, there’s 202,000 members in 206 countries, we put up 350 courses and they’ve been viewed 550,000 times, so over a half million times. Put the first module on Dentaltown then say, "If you want the remaining five, you’re going to need to go to, what is it, dentalproshop.com?
Chris Kammer: Yeah, dentalproshop.com.
Howard Farran: Where'd that name come from? You a golf pro and then you switched to dental?
Chris Kammer: Originally when I was doing the advertising dentist and I was doing a lot of lectures or inviting lecturers in and taping them and creating a lot of products, I wanted to be the one-stop-shop for all the various at-home learning, so that’s where it got the name.
Howard Farran: What year was that?
Chris Kammer: I’ve been probably doing that for 10 years.
Howard Farran: 10 years?
Chris Kammer: Yeah.
Howard Farran: What do you think about that? I’m a big fan of your 259 posts on Dentaltown and I would like to get your message out to more dentists to get more dentists listen to you that’s why it’s an honor that you gave me an hour of your day. I think putting up some of that on Dentaltown plus the online [CE 00:54:41] on the iPhone, we just passed 35,000 downloads of the Dentaltown app on the Android and the iPhone. It would just be massive marketing message.
Chris Kammer: Howard, it’s a done deal.
Howard Farran: Right on.
Chris Kammer: I appreciate the opportunity to talk to you and I appreciate your offering. Yeah, I definitely would love to get it out there. This is the message that is just about, everybody can hear and can improve in their office.
Howard Farran: Okay. I only got five more minutes. $1,000 is a chunk of change.
Chris Kammer: Yes it is.
Howard Farran: I want you to spend the last five minutes and explain what the Gums of Steel manual, live consulting online program is and how they can find it at dentalproshop.com. Okay, you got about 7,000 that is driving the work, why should I give you $1,000? Tell me about your program.
Chris Kammer: I think one of the main things is I know your hygiene department that the patients going through your hygiene department, their mouths are on fire with gum disease. I can prove it to you, I can show it to you, I take their stats. Look, if I know if you’re not doing the same amount of periodontal maintenance visits as you are prophies in your office, then by average, you’re not taking care of the gum disease in your practice. The average dental practice does about maybe 10 periodontal maintenance visits for every 100 prophies they do, okay? It should be 100 periodontal maintenance visits for every 100 prophies they do or more, or higher as it is in my office and some of my best Gums of Steel offices. My whole goal is to turn around your hygiene department so that you can start diagnosing and treating gum disease.
How do I do it? I start off by lighting the staff on fire for the message of zero tolerance for gum disease. One of my mantras is ZT for B3 which is zero tolerance for bleeding and bad bacteria, there’s three Bs. You don’t want bleeding, you don’t want bad bacteria in your mouth. What Gums of Steel is going to do is get the team onboard for diagnosing, to make it as simple as possible, easy way to diagnose and treat the gum disease that’s rampant in your dental office. It’s the most undiagnosed and untreated area in all of dentistry and it’s the place we are most at risk for getting sued someday if you’re supervising the neglect of all these people that have bloody gums for every prophy they get.
There’s six modules, it can all be done on the web, I actually give the lectures …
Howard Farran: How long is each module?
Chris Kammer: Pardon me?
Howard Farran: How long is each module?
Chris Kammer: Approximately 60 minutes. You could do it over our lunch, we have a lunch hour meeting, you can all watch the module together.
Howard Farran: It’s six 1-hour modules?
Chris Kammer: Six 1-hour modules.
Howard Farran: You’re going to put the first one up on Dentaltown?
Chris Kammer: I would gladly put the first one up on …
Howard Farran: I know my homies. I know dentists better than anyone. I lectured 1,500 times in 50 countries.
Chris Kammer: I know …
Howard Farran: I know what everyone is thinking, Chris. This is what they’re thinking. They’re thinking I can’t lead my team to this. I’m afraid of my hygienist. How can I get my hygienist and my receptionist? The dentist believes you, how does he sell this to the team?
Chris Kammer: If they want to watch this first module, we’ll get it up on Dentaltown. Just watching that first module with your team, anybody that can watch that first module know and come away saying, "We better do something."
Howard Farran: I’ll tell you, all staff, they never believe the dentist in the building, but they’ll believe any dentist 100 miles away from home with a good PowerPoint.
Chris Kammer: Amen.
Howard Farran: That’s a human phenomenon, isn’t it? An expert is anyone 100 miles away from home. That’s why you always take your staff with you to a seminar because they’ll believe the doctor lecturing or a hygienist.
Chris Kammer: Yeah.
Howard Farran: If you tell them the exact same thing and the same words, same pitch, whatever they like, you’re from Kansas.
Chris Kammer: Yeah, but I’ve had hygienists and dentists take my program. I get straight 10s on the program, I get hygienists telling me, "That’s the best seminar I’ve ever been since I’ve been on a hygiene school." This is a whole new area of dentistry. It’s exciting. If you’re bored with your hygiene department, this is a way to light them on fire and really have them doing the lifesaving care that they need to be doing.
Howard Farran: Which team members give you the most pushback or are you not getting much pushback?
Chris Kammer: When I started this, I had a hygienist leave that thought we were too aggressive and didn’t get the message. Thank God, Susan Ertel who actually helped me put the Gums of Steel manual together and still my hygienist to this day who I think is one of the top-producing hygienists in the country and most passionate, she bought it, we connected on it and we’ve been doing it ever since.
Howard Farran: Okay. We’re out of time, but I got to go two overtime questions with you.
Chris Kammer: Two overtime questions?
Howard Farran: I do. We’re past our hour. I’m supposed to end it but tell them, why did you become ABC World News Tonight Person of the Week in 2010? Was that your comedy act? Being tall, dark and handsome? Did they hear you’re sending, what was it?
Chris Kammer: It was not that.
Howard Farran: It was not that?
Chris Kammer: Howard, I started the Halloween Candy BuyBack, I didn’t invent the Halloween Candy BuyBack, it was an idea that I borrowed from someone that was talking on Dentaltown, their forums. This was not an original idea, but the only original idea that I brought to it was I said this has got to be the profession of dentistry's response to Halloween. Why not? We buy the excess candy back from the kids, we give them $1 a pound, it gives us a chance to get them in the office, we can teach them about xylitol which is a sugar alternative that actually is healthy for teeth. We buy the candy back and then we send the candy and toothbrushes. Our mission is here’s a 100,000 toothbrushes for the Halloween Candy Buyback. We send to the troops so it’s good for the kids, they eat less candy, it’s good for the troops, they get moral support from people back home, it’s great for moms and dads because here’s an alternative, the kids don’t have to eat the whole shopping bag full of candy and it’s awesome for dental practice because I’ve never done anything that got more PR.
Now, when ABC Television started noticing that all their affiliates were doing these stories, and I’m talking local affiliates, the local ABC affiliate was doing a story on Halloween Candy BuyBack, they searched for the guy that got it started and that’s how they got to me, did a story on me, I showed them how many thousands of dentists have been involved, how many tons and tons of candy we’ve collected and sent to the troops along with the toothbrushes and such and they decided to make me Person of the Week for doing that.
Howard Farran: That is just amazing buddy. My hat is off to you. You’re a rock star in so many different ways.
Chris Kammer: Howard, you’re so kind. Thank you. I’m speaking with the ultimate rock star in dentistry, that would be you …
Howard Farran: Did you ever do a lecture or anything explaining the Halloween BuyBack program? Do you have it on video or anything?
Chris Kammer: I do and I have it on webinars. I got webinars and I’m going to be doing …
Howard Farran: You should put that up separately. Right now, it’s September 29 and Halloween is October 31st. We should get that up before Halloween …
Chris Kammer: Let’s do it.
Howard Farran: … which by the way is my favorite time of year because I live the desert so now, it’s no longer 115 in the shade. It starts to get cool. Halloween is the first kickoff and then the next month is Thanksgiving then the next month is Christmas and then New Year. This is just the rocking hottest part of the earth for me.
Chris Kammer: Awesome. Yeah, it’s great. In dentistry, we’re not trying to shut down Halloween, it’s Americana and it’s fun.
Howard Farran: Right. Yeah. Everything in moderation. I got to go one more overtime question because you said something so fast that a lot of people might not have got it, but why are you a fan of xylitol? You’ve been talking about P. gingivalis and gum disease and Gums of Steel and gums, gums, gums for the whole hour and then at the last second, you talked about xylitol which basically streptococcus mutans, a totally different bacteria and a totally different disease, dental decay, why are you a fan of xylitol?
Chris Kammer: Okay. Xylitol is a sugar. It tastes like sugar, it’s the sugar that everyone should be selling in their dental office. I sell pound bags of it, it’s been the number one sales product in my dental office.
Howard Farran: What brand and where do you buy it?
Chris Kammer: You can buy it from Xlear.
Howard Farran: Xlear?
Chris Kammer: X-L-E-A-R.
Howard Farran: You say X-L …
Chris Kammer: X-L-E-A-R. That’s the Spry company. They make xylitol products, they make mints, gum. Xylitol does not feed the bad bacteria. It does not feed the strep mutans because the strep mutans eat it and they can’t metabolize it so it kills the strep mutans. Also, it clings to the operons on the outside of the membrane of the bacteria deforming it so it can’t stick to your tooth as well and it can’t stick together, clump together creating plaque or a biofilm. When you have a patient's mouth that has been doing five servings of xylitol a day, and these are small amounts. You don’t want to eat a whole lot of xylitol, you only need like a gram or two per serving. The surfaces of their teeth are so slippery, they’re so plaque-free, they’re so healthy. Studies show that you can reduce the amount of strep mutans in your mouth by 95% with six months and really, it’s pretty much darn near 100%, but I think …
Howard Farran: Do you have a www for that?
Chris Kammer: I would say X-L-E-A-R.
Howard Farran: X-L-E-A-R.com?
Chris Kammer: Yeah. It’s the Xlear company or Google for Xlear, X-L-E-A-R or for the Spry company.
Howard Farran: Or the Spry company?
Chris Kammer: Yeah.
Howard Farran: Yeah. I got the X-L-E-A-R. You buy this from them and you buy gum and mint. What do you buy from these guys?
Chris Kammer: We buy the gum and the mints and the pound bag of sugar. We also buy this little thing called the banana brush which is good for every little child. Their first toothbrush should be a banana brush so they can run around the house with it. It’s rubber, it’s flexy, it doesn’t have real bristles at it but it’s something they can gnaw and chew on and it comes with a strawberry-banana flavor gel which is xylitol and the kids can be gnawing on that gel and getting the benefit of xylitol to reduce …
Howard Farran: That’s from …
Chris Kammer: Once again, that’s from the Xlear, X-L-E-A-R.com.
Howard Farran: It looks like they’re from American Fork, Utah. I’ve never heard of American Fork.
Chris Kammer: Yeah. They’re right …
Howard Farran: Do you think someone as fat as me would have heard of every fork and spoon and knife in America? I must have missed the American Fork. We are triple out of time. I just want to end with, sometimes it’s hard to grow up in a top-your-own dad who’s a legend and you did. Jack would be so proud. Jack was my hero and you’re my American idol dentist. Thank you so much for spending an hour with me today.
Chris Kammer: I am Jack Kammer's kid and if he’s looking down and he’s happy with what I’m doing, I feel blessed and it was a miracle I even got to be his kid. I’m eternally grateful, I’m overwhelmed with blessings, life is great and I love being a dentist and I love being a joyful person bringing the joy and the passion to what dentistry needs today. Howard, it’s been an honor being on your podcast. Thank you for asking me.
Howard Farran: Thank you. I want to tell you, I love you too, so have a rocking hot day.
Chris Kammer: All right. Mutual love.
Howard Farran: Bye-bye.
Chris Kammer: Peace out.
Howard Farran: Peace out.