15 Dentists Reveal The Worst Things They've Seen On The Job

Voting Rules
Vote up the worst stomach-turning stories these dentists have to share.

Lots of people hate going to the dentist. Maybe they don't like a stranger poking around in their mouths, or maybe they forget to floss and don't want to hear the lecture that entails again. But have you ever considered what it's like to be on the other side of that scraping hooked tool? Well, according to these dentists, the grass isn't always greener. Sometimes, it's funny dentist stories these professionals are sharing, but what you'll more commonly see is the full-on dental horror story!

Pro-tip: make sure you're not eating anything before you dive into this mouth of madness.

  • 1
    441 VOTES

    Nope. Nope. NOPE.

    Posted by u/RadicalOptimist:

    I worked in a dental clinic for four years. Oh, the stories. But the ones that stick out the most are:

    Dentist was working at the clinic, and an elderly man was brought in to get his dentures repaired. For those who don't know, dentures are to be taken out and cleaned EVERY DAY. This poor guy, who was under nurse care in a home, hadn't had this thing removed in 10 months. The dentist removed his denture, and the most intense smell of rotten food and infected gums was released. Food had been impacted under his denture for so long, it had deformed his gums, and his dentures didn't fit anymore. The dentist took the liberty to go to the home and counsel every single nurse on how to care for their patients' dentures.

    When I was in training to do cleanings, we had an instructor that told us she had a patient that had a calculus bridge behind her front teeth on the roof of her mouth. A calculus bridge is essentially plaque that has been there for so long, it hardens, and the only way to get it off is to get a cleaning by a professional. The bridge part of it means it stretches between multiple teeth, creating a 'bridge'. Anyway, she's doing her work breaking apart this thing, and she removes a piece and notices MAGGOTS underneath. She has to leave the room before she gets sick and has to come back to finish the cleaning. Pretty horrible.

    441 votes
  • 2
    361 VOTES

    For When You Want That Extra Clean Feel

    Posted by a former Redditor:

    When I was a student, my instructors told me some stories.

    A lady came in saying her gums were sensitive. They looked in her mouth, and her gums were literally peeling away. They had her rinse, and actual pale pink pieces of gum were coming out of her mouth. It was the consistently of bubblegum when it gets chewed for too long and it's extra sticky. So they ask what she's been doing, and it turns out she's been brushing with Comet (the powdery toilet-cleaning bleach) because it was cheaper than whitening.

    361 votes
  • 3
    328 VOTES

    He Lost His Lunch, And Everyone Else Lost Their Appetite

    Posted by u/SamK2323:

    When I was a student in dental school, we worked on an emergency clinic once a month on a rotation basis. This acted as primary care for people either without a regular dentist, homeless people, or people who were just visiting the city. A man, middle-aged with no relevant medical history, came in with the complaint of sore gums. When he opened his mouth, his gums were blood red (not a good sign) and were actually weeping blood as I sat there. Whilst performing a periodontal examination (checking for gum disease using a blunt-ended probe), I must have burst a pocket of infection underneath the gum, because this wash of pus ran down his teeth and onto his tongue, and he threw up then and there. Fun times.

    328 votes
  • 4
    299 VOTES

    A Hairy Situation

    Posted by u/kittyboomsta:

    This one little girl opened her mouth, and each tooth was surrounded and full of knotty pieces of her black hair. It was just everywhere, masses of it with gunk, too... Can't forget the horror from seeing and cleaning it all out... like cleaning the shower drain! Obviously, she was a rabid hair chewer/eater. Not sure what caused her to do that, though.

    299 votes
  • 5
    294 VOTES

    Free Agents

    Posted by u/AegonTheConquerer:

    As a dental resident, I rotated through a couple hospitals. One hospital was specific to patients with neurological/spinal issues - basically patients who were not able to take care of themselves, i.e., brush their teeth for whatever reason. One patient specifically did not brush their teeth for YEARS. Their calculus/plaque literally coated all his teeth completely and engulfed them. The teeth were literally floating in space, held together due to the plaque.

    294 votes
  • 6
    399 VOTES

    It's Not Like The Seagull Was Using It

    Posted by u/RedRox:

    I'm a dentist in New Zealand.

    Was working in hospital and a woman came into the clinic. She was complaining of pain in her front tooth. She had had multi-extractions in the past, and also had a lot of carious lesions in her mouth.

    The front tooth in question looked nothing like a tooth. Asking her about it, she said that she'd had the tooth extracted some time ago, but didn't like the gap. One day she had been walking along the beach and found a dead seagull. She basically took it home, cut the beak off and shaped it, then super-glued it into her mouth. It flapped around, of course, but she seemed happy with it - although the gum around it had turned malignant, probably due to the superglue and also the continuous irritation of this beak.

    TL;DR: Woman super-glues a bird's beak onto her gum to look "better."

    399 votes