Thursday, September 24, 2009

Indigenous Toothbrush ---> Abrasion !!!!!


After a long day in the hospital where you talk and deal with nothing but teeth, the last thing I would like to carry home is dentistry. Not because I don't like it but like all things an over dose of it , day in -day out is something I am yet to deal with ........but sometimes I come across clinical cases that I would like to share, like the one I am going to put up today.
The case I happen to see today is of a local lady , who came to the department with the complaint of severe hypersensitivity. After taking her history, I found that she has the habit of chewing a lot of betel nut and there after cleans off her teeth to remove the stains , with these indigenous toothbrush, called " Snep Kwai " in the local language. These are actually covering of the betel nut or supari, that are cut and shaped like the one in the picture. It does clean your teeth to a certain extend, but can also cause a condition called " Abrasion " on the tooth surface leading to hypersensitivity and even acute pain.
Theoretically, a lot can be studied about Abrasion. Text books explains that it is a pathological wearing away of tooth substance through some abnormal mechanical process. It usually occurs on the exposed root surface of the tooth. The most common cause can be faulty tooth brushing or using an abrasive dentifrice eg. charcoal powder. Less common cause may be related to habit or occupation of the patient.
Naturally, my first advise to her was to immediately stop using these brushes and then asked her to invest in a proper tooth brush.....educated and motivated her , followed by the rest of the treatment.
Ignorance can be bliss , I agree, but not at the cost of one's health and definitely not at the cost of losing your tooth either. What you say folks ???? Happy Brushing and keep smiling !!!

4 comments:

penak said...

interesting and informative post . Nice to see the dentist in you.

Lin Floyd said...

my husband had this problem too but from overbrushing and his enamel wore off then his tooth got infected and his jaw swelled=after several root canals and other treatments plus antibiotics he's back to normal, lol.

Onkar said...

Nice to get some free medical advice from you now and then.

Anonymous said...

good advice really