Every person has different reactions to the thought of dental visits. Although cases of dental anxiety and phobia are more frequent among children, even some adults also experience the heebie-jeebies when coming to their dental appointments. From tooth extractions, root canals, oral surgery, and other major procedures, many people will admit that they dread the idea of sitting in a dentist’s chair.
Often, our fear of undergoing dental procedures compels us to lie to our dentist. Believe it or not, many patients are guilty of lying to their dentist about their oral hygiene. They stretch the truth (even a little bit) to make it appear that they’re actually cleaning their teeth or skip a major procedure because of the fear of pain. Foregoing dental hygiene or skipping out dental treatments can do more damage to your teeth. It also includes lying to your dentist about forgetting to floss, giving up smoking, or not drinking alcohol.
The truth is, our dentists are well aware when you’re not being honest or exaggerating the truth. This is because your entire mouth is full of clues and is a reflection of how you look after your teeth. To avoid embarrassing yourself on your next dental appointment, here are the top lies that your dentist knows you’re telling:
Lie # 1: “I floss regularly”
People can get so busy with their lives that they don’t have time for flossing. We all know flossing can be time-consuming and difficult, especially for people with braces. But flossing is a critical part of dental hygiene since brushing isn’t enough to remove all the plaque from the teeth. Once plaque and food particles settle in between the teeth, they increase the risk of gingivitis, gum disease, tooth decay, and other dental problems. This explains why your dentist is always keen to remind you to floss your teeth.
The appearance of your gums is a major tip-off whether you’re flossing regularly or you’re doing it wrong. Plaque causes inflammation on the gum line, so once your dentist sees your inflamed gum line, it’s a sure sign that you’re flossing correctly or regularly as you should.
Lie # 2: “I don’t smoke”
This is a common lie for most dentists here from patients who are frequent cigarette smokers. Tobacco is one of the worst habits you can do to your oral health. It contains huge amounts of nicotine which are notorious for staining the teeth. Since tobacco stains vary for every person, your fingers and your smell are already a dead giveaway that you’re actively smoking!
Nicotine stains on your fingers, the smell of your breath and body, the color of your teeth are common signs of smoking. Even if it’s a habit you’re not comfortable confessing, any experienced dentist can easily tell your smoking habit.
Tobacco smoking isn’t only notorious for staining your teeth but also increases your risk for gum decay, tooth loss, tooth decay, respiratory diseases, and cancer. So, quit telling your dentist that you don’t smoke because they won’t stop reminding you to break the habit.
Lie # 3: “It isn’t painful”
Sitting in the dentist’s chair is the wrong time to act like you’re tough. Our dentists have dealt with countless patients with different levels of pain threshold. This means the dentist always knows when you’re feeling any discomfort or pain.
People have different responses when reacting to pain. No matter how hard we hide it, some parts of our body will clench, flinch, or become tense, especially if the pain gets too unbearable. More often, it is often our eyes, tongue, and legs that will immediately respond to pain. These actions put our bodies into defensive mode.
When the dentist senses discomfort during a procedure, they will immediately ask you if it’s hurting you. In this case, don’t be afraid to speak up if the procedure is causing pain. People have different pain tolerance, so enduring pain won’t make you look more fearless. The dentist would be willing to apply a topical anesthetic to make the process painless. So, do yourself a favor and stop pretending.
Lying to your dentist about your dental hygiene and habits leads to long-term problems. If you’re lying to your dentist to skip a dental treatment, then you’re only increasing your chances of damaging your teeth, which can lead to major dental procedures. Save yourself from the embarrassment and harmful consequences by being honest with your dentist. Dental professionals are experts who can help you improve your oral health and reduce your chances of undergoing scary dental procedures.