Social media, especially platforms like TikTok, have created an entire “hack” culture. Influencers offer advice about everything from fitness to beauty and even recipes. Many influencers promote “hacks” or shortcuts that make doing things yourself fun, easy, and cheap. Unfortunately, you don’t need fancy credentials or specialized education to offer DIY hacks to the masses. All you need is an audience. Therein lies the problem. Not all advice you see on social media is good advice. In some situations, following the latest online trend can be detrimental to your health. Case in point, viral DIY dental hacks.
What are DIY dental hacks? Can they hurt your smile? The team at Babylon Dental Care has the answers.
What Is a DIY Dental Hack?
A DIY dental hack is a dental care shortcut to save a person time and money. Instead of heading to a dentist or oral care professional for help, influencers and social media personalities show people how to “care” for their teeth at home. Most DIY dental hacks revolve around solving common dental complaints like gap teeth, crooked teeth, or discolored teeth. Their claim? You can get perfect teeth at home without spending money on dental care.
The problem with the DIY dental hack approach is that the people spreading dental care advice are not dental care professionals. They do not have the training or credentials to offer safe medical advice. Most DIY dental hacks on social media and TikTok are dangerous and can ruin your smile and dental health.
Common DIY Dental Hacks
Unfortunately, there is no shortage of dental advice on social media. Some of the most common DIY dental hacks include:
- Whitening with hydrogen peroxide or lemon juice– Everyone wants gorgeous pearly whites. However, whitening your teeth at home can cause damage to your tooth enamel. Popular DIY dental hacks tell impressionable people to use as much as 3 percent hydrogen peroxide to whiten teeth. Others say to use lemon juice. Strong concentrations of hydrogen peroxide can cause chemical burns to the mouth and gums. Acids like lemon juice and apple cider vinegar can also wear down tooth enamel, leading to decay.
- Filing down teeth – The average person wants a straight, symmetrical smile. Influencers recommend filing down your teeth with a nail file or other abrasive medium. Filing teeth can also destroy tooth enamel. It may also potentially damage the blood supply and nerve structure of teeth.
- DIY rubber band braces – Influencers also recommend using small rubber bands to close gaps between teeth. It’s a damaging practice that can cause significant tooth and jaw problems.
- Closing gaps with dental cement or epoxy – Another remedy for gap teeth advises people to fill gaps at home with dental cement, a paste used to fill cavities. It’s a practice that is dangerous and can destroy teeth.
Avoiding Misinformation and the Temptation to Do-It-Yourself
DIY dental hacks can destroy your enamel, damage teeth, and cause long-term oral health problems, including decay, tooth loss, and jaw pain. Saving money now can mean spending thousands of dollars later to fix the problems created by a DIY hack. It’s not worth it.
Dentists, orthodontists, and other dental care professionals have specialized skills and training. This training enables them to care for teeth safely and effectively. Tooth enamel doesn’t grow back. Adult teeth do not grow back. Once you alter them, you cause long-term and sometimes irreversible damage.
Contact Babylon Dental Care for an Appointment
If you are concerned about the appearance of your teeth, talk to a dental professional. At Babylon Dental Care, our compassionate dental care team wants to help you put on your best smile. We offer routine dental cleanings, whitening, and cosmetic dentistry. We can do it all! If cost is a concern, talk to us about our dental care plans. We strive to make dental care accessible. Don’t resort to viral DIY dental care hacks. Call our office at (631) 893-6665 to make an appointment today!