Dentist Warns Against DIY Dentistry Amidst ‘Turkey Teeth’ Trend

TikTok user created trends have proved not to be advised in the past, and the current one is no exception…

Social media can certainly be a source of inspiration for many, but at the same time it could encourage the spread of some dangerous trends.

Interested in what dental hacks people are sharing online, experts at ExpressDentist.com decided to find out the most popular DIY dental procedures on TikTok by extracting a list of popular procedures and collecting the number of views each had generated.

Dr. Greg, expert at ExpressDentist.com, provides exclusive comments on each of the TikTok DIY dental trends and the dangers they might pose.

The four biggest DIY dental hacks on TikTok…

Teeth Whitening – 10,851,300 views

Rubber Band Braces – 7,300,000 views

DIY Dentures – 659,000 views

Teeth Filing – 266,800 views

Topping the list with more than 10 million views on TikTok is teeth whitening. Users of the social media platform have shared multiple videos on achieving the perfect white smile. The most popular hacks appeared to be: the use of 3% hydrogen peroxide mixed with water, lemon juice mixed with baking soda and even Mr. Clean Magic Eraser.

ExpressDentist.com expert, Dr. Greg:

“We only get one set of teeth, and they don’t repair themselves once they’re damaged. Many of the trending whitening techniques come with significant risk of damage to teeth. For example, Mr. Clean Magic Eraser contains abrasives that are as hard as glass. Abrasives erode tooth enamel the same way sandpaper works. Lemon juice is extremely acidic and can rapidly erode enamel. While some methods may be harmless, others come with the risk of serious damage. Stick with professional, approved methods for better results and healthier teeth.”

With over 7 million TikTok views, second place goes to rubber band braces. This DIY hack has been used in an attempt to close gaps between teeth with the use of rubber bands.

“This may seem relatively harmless, and it’s unlikely to cause major problems. However, clinicians apply specific forces to move the entire tooth, including the root. Uncontrolled forces may tip teeth towards each other, and this can be difficult to maintain as the teeth attempt to tip back to their original position. In other cases, movement can result in bite changes with the opposing teeth. Consider a simple aligner system under professional supervision if you’re attempting to move teeth.”

In third place are DIY dentures, which have generated 659,000 views on the platform. This trend shows people using mouldable plastic to create their own dentures for missing teeth in home conditions.

“This is a reversible procedure that’s unlikely to create any damage if you’re able to control the material and achieve the appearance you want. It’s unlikely to function adequately long-term, but it could offer a short-term solution.”

And the least popular TikTok DIY dental trend is…

Having 266,800 views in total (10,584,500 less than teeth whitening in first place), teeth filing places last in the study. TikTok users posting videos of this trend can be seen using a nail file to file down their teeth, in order to try and make them look straight and symmetrical.

“Filing your own teeth isn’t recommended by dentists, and it should be done at your own risk. Tooth enamel doesn’t grow back, and there’s only 1-2 mm of enamel over the underlying dentin. Dentin is much softer and can become sensitive when it’s exposed. You should have a dentist evaluate your tooth structure and leave reshaping and filing in their trained hands.”


Methodology

ExpressDentist.com sought to find out the most popular DIY dental procedures people are trying out at home, according to views on TikTok.
A list of four popular DIY TikTok dental hacks was identified after referencing multiple reputable online articles.
Following this, each DIY dental procedure was manually inputted into TikTok utilising the search variation #dentalhackname and the number of views generated was recorded. Search variations, such as: #teethwhiteningathome, #diybraces and #filingteeth were used in order to obtain accurate results.
All dental hacks were then ranked based on the amount of views they had generated, so that the most popular on TikTok could be determined.
Data was collected on 8 June 2022 and is subject to change.

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