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Dental Work and Tinnitus: Here’s What You Need to Know

Unfortunately, despite your best efforts, there is a limit to the extent to which you can take care of your teeth properly. It’s possible that going to the dentist twice a year is the single most essential thing you can do for your oral health.
There is no denying the importance of maintaining good oral health, and we should all make it a priority to see the dentist on a regular basis. There are instances when there really is no other choice. Dentists are the only medical professionals who can do procedures such as fillings, cleanings, root canals, crowns, and everything in between for you. Now, let’s take into consideration the fact that you suffer from a condition known as tinnitus, which may make the situation a great deal more challenging. Tinnitus is an irritating condition that can even be downright debilitating.
There are various factors associated with dentistry and your mouth that have the potential to create tinnitus symptoms or exacerbate those that are already present. If you suffer with tinnitus, we are not suggesting that you avoid going to the dentist at all costs; nonetheless, there are a few things about which you should be knowledgeable. Hence, with regard to dental work and tinnitus, the following is the information that you need to know.

Tinnitus and Dental Drills and Procedures
When it comes to dental procedures, the drill might be one of the most bothersome aspects for those who suffer from tinnitus. Drilling is an integral part of a significant number of dental operations. Without the use of a drill, it is impossible to place a filling or complete a root canal procedure. The issue is that the drill makes a piercingly loud and high-pitched noise, which is not only irritating to the ear but also poses a significant risk to the user’s hearing health.
The fact that wearing ear protection will not be of much use throughout the exercises is a negative aspect of the activity. It is true that you may put your fingers in your ears as often as you want, but the reality of the matter is that the loud drilling sounds does not enter your ear canal and cause damage. Instead, it generates sound and vibrations in your jaw bones, which then go all the way up to your ears. Consequently, the source of the harm to your ears is not coming from the outside but rather from inside your mind.

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Thus, putting earplugs in your ears won’t help you in this situation. The finest piece of advice that we can provide is to instruct your dentist to only drill for little periods of time rather than for an extended period of time. This will reduce the amount of damage done to your cochlea; although it is not a perfect solution, it is preferable than the other possibility. While the drilling does not create tinnitus, it may significantly exacerbate the condition if it already exists.

Tinnitus and dental fillings
There is also a connection between tinnitus and fillings, which are unsightly restorations that dentists place in patients’ teeth in order to treat cavities and prevent further tooth decay. In this context, we are especially referring to amalgam fillings, which are dental restorations comprised of silver and mercury. It’s possible that you believe amalgam fillings are composed mostly of silver, but in reality, they include a significant amount of mercury in addition to the silver.
Mercury, which has been proved to cause neurological disorders, mercury poisoning, and of course death, is the clear source of the problem here. In most cases, having one or two fillings in your mouth is not a reason for concern; but, if you have more than that in your mouth, it is possible that this is the root cause of your increasing tinnitus symptoms. It has been shown that individuals whose mouths have several mercury fillings absorb, on a daily basis, an amount of mercury that is higher than what the World Health Organization considers to be safe.
Because of the high concentration of mercury in your body, these fillings have the potential to either create tinnitus or just make the condition of those who already have it worse. The basic line is that mercury-based fillings have the potential to have an effect on tinnitus, but we are not going to dive into the specific science behind why this is the case. Your best chance is to inquire about composite resin fillings, which is something that we would advise you to do regardless of whether or not you have tinnitus.

Tenseness in the Jaw
Bruxism is the medical word for the habit of clenching one’s jaw, and it is yet another factor that has been linked to the development of tinnitus symptoms as well as an increase in the intensity of preexisting symptoms. The tightening of the jaw might have a detrimental impact on the nerves in your body.
The persistent clenching of your jaw might have an effect on the nerves in your ears due to the fact that everything in your brain is related in some way or another. Since the factors that lead to clenching often have treatments that are not too complicated, this is one of the less significant issues. On the other hand, there are specialised therapies available, such as a straightforward mouth guard, that may lessen the intensity of your clenching as well as the frequency with which it occurs.

Dentistry and Other Possible Causes of Tinnitus
There are a few other dental treatments that have been linked to the development of tinnitus symptoms or the exacerbation of existing ones.
• Plaque cleaning using ultrasonic waves • Extraction of impacted wisdom teeth • Treatment of TMJ disorders • Abscesses in the mouth

Dentists and the Symptom of Tinnitus
It should not come as a surprise that a shockingly high percentage of dentists throughout the world suffer from some kind of hearing loss in addition to tinnitus. These results were found. There is a connection between this and the dental drill that we discussed a moment ago. It has been shown that high-speed dental drills are responsible for or contribute to the development of tinnitus symptoms in an overwhelming majority of dentists who use them on a regular basis.
Based on the findings of one limited research, dental practitioners are more than twice as likely to have tinnitus than other types of medical practitioners. It is believed that anywhere from 30 to 100 percent of dentists already suffer from or will suffer from some sort of tinnitus later on in their careers. This is a very high proportion of the profession. It is reported that working with a dental drill all day is comparable to standing next to a running gas-powered lawnmower with your head in the same position the whole time.
The fact of the matter is that those whose professions include exposure to loud noise, such as musicians or those who handle heavy equipment, are not the only ones who run the risk of acquiring tinnitus. As a consequence of this, the majority of dental schools now mandate that students wear ear protection while they are working with dental drills.

Conclusion
Things might become a bit complicated when discussing dental and tinnitus at the same time. On the one hand, dental treatment has the potential to make the situation much more severe, but on the other, it is often something that must be done.

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