I’m currently a student studying to be a dental hygienist. I am in the last year of my degree. Anyway, one day at our on-campus oral health clinic, a women comes in for a clean. She had a moderate amount of tartar build up, with the worst area being the inside of her lower incisors (this is extremely common). I cleaned off the tartar, which is usually met with a happy patient saying how great their mouth feels. Not this woman. She looked worried and said to me “my teeth feel different like there are holes”.
Turns out she had worn down gums from brushing her teeth too hard. I explained to her the reason why they felt different was because the tartar had been there, masking the fact that her gums had receded. She still looked worried so I called our supervisor who is a practicing Hygienist over (who is a woman to explain). She said exactly the same thing I did. The patient was still not satisfied and asked for the dentist (a male) to have a look. He did and explained exactly what we did. The patient was then happy and said “oh! that makes sense now!” and left.
Kim, New Zealand