For Stan Fletcher - Be Your Own Dentist

Find out how I whiten my teeth at home!
Find out how I whiten my teeth at home!

(Note: This was written in response to a challenge issued by Stan Fletcher. DO NOT use these home remedies!)

If you don’t have dental insurance, a visit to the dentist can be extremely painful to your pocketbook. Unfortunately, dental problems can cause excruciating physical pain, too. In fact, before dental care was available, there were actually a few of our knuckle-dragging ancestors who killed themselves due to abscessed teeth, according to anthropologists. I totally believe this. I had an abscessed jaw tooth several years ago that caused me so much pain I tried to knock myself unconscious by banging my head on the wall. I didn’t succeed, but I did break the wood paneling in the hallway. Afterwards, I found a pair of hubby’s pliers and tried to pull the tooth myself. When it started popping and cracking, my husband became nauseous and took his tool away from me.

All this occurred at midnight on a Saturday. Hubby finally got hold of the dentist and told him if he didn’t do something immediately, I was either going to kill him or kill myself. The dentist agreed to meet us at his office, which was 45 miles away. After the dentist saw my tooth, he informed that he could pull it, but because there was so much infection, he couldn’t use any Novocain. I told him I didn’t care – it couldn’t possibly be any more painful than what I was already experiencing. He forced the offending molar out, gave me some antibiotics, and sent me on my merry way.

After I had fully recovered from the ordeal, I began thinking, “Heck. I coulda pulled that tooth out myself if my significant other weren’t such a wimp. It’s not like Dr. Dent used any anesthesia, anyway.”

From that point on, I began doing all my own dental care. If you want to save a bundle of money and not spend time waiting in a dentist’s office, below are some tips I’ve learned from my own experiences.

Abscessed tooth

I must forewarn you that this is a somewhat uncomfortable procedure, so you’ll need some sort of painkiller first. Choose your poison, then drink it, smoke it, swallow it, or snort it. The trick is to use enough to knock the edge off the pain yet still retain your faculties.

Once you’ve achieved an I-don’t-give-a-damn attitude and your pliers have soaked for 10 minutes in bleach, you’re ready. Grasp the tooth firmly with the pliers and work the tooth back and forth, breaking it away from the gum. Once the tooth is loose enough, you’ll be able to lift it from the socket.

If it’s a molar with long claw-like roots, you might have to break the tooth into separate pieces in order to remove it. This can be achieved with a small chisel and a large hammer. Simply hold the chisel on the top of the tooth with your left hand, and strike it repeatedly with the hammer, which is held in your right hand. As an instructional video, you can watch the tooth-striking scene from Castaway. Yes, I know Tom Hanks used an ice-skate blade, but I’ve found that a chisel is more precise. Since the tooth will now be in numerous pieces, you might have to dig them out with some tweezers.

Cavity

Cavities should be filled as soon as they’re obvious. One of the first signs of a cavity is that you have to dig food out of it after a meal. It’s imperative to take care of a cavity before it reaches the dentin and causes a painful abscess (see above).

Before starting, clean the hole out well. Then use a fast-cure epoxy glue to fill the cavity. As the epoxy hardens, you’ll need to leave your mouth open until the compound has completely cured.

Broken tooth

Don’t let a minor mishap like a broken tooth send you running to a dentist. You can take care of this yourself at home, as long as you retained the broken piece.

First, make sure the tooth and the broken piece are both completely dry. This is best achieved with a blow dryer turned to its hottest setting. Next, place two drops of super glue on the main part of the tooth and quickly place the broken piece back in its original position. If you used too much glue, there will be a rough place on the tooth. Simply sand this down using 120-grit sandpaper.

Caps

If you have just a nub of a tooth left and think you need a cap, you can save a ton of cash by taking care of it yourself. For this procedure, you’ll need a substance called “Sculpty,” available at most craft stores. Sculpty is a pliable clay that hardens once it’s been cured.

Take a small amount of the clay and mold it into a tooth shape with your fingers. While it’s still soft, place it on your tooth so that the mold will be a perfect fit. Next, place a small amount of super glue onto the Sculpty tooth and set it in place.

Sculpty requires significant heat to cure and harden. Here, you have two options. You can either place your head, with mouth open, in a 350-degree oven for 10 minutes, or you can use a blow dryer. If you opt for the blow-dryer method, you’ll need to hold the dryer nozzle directly on the cap for at least two hours.

Sculpty is gray, so unless you’re okay with a gray tooth, you’ll need to paint the molded cap once it’s completely dry. To do so, apply several thin layers of acrylic paint with a small brush. I always use titanium white. Between each layer of paint, use the blow dryer again for drying.

Whitening

Home dental care isn’t just for emergencies. You can also use it for cosmetic purposes. If your teeth aren’t as dazzling as you’d like them to be, a simple remedy is to use white-out or another correction fluid. The kind that comes with a small brush in the cap works best.

Your teeth have to be completely dry before applying the fluid. Using 120-grit sandpaper, “rough up” the surface of your teeth. This will help the fluid adhere to your teeth better.

Next, apply a thin layer of white-out and allow it to dry completely. You’ll need to drag out the trusty blow dryer again for this. Once the first layer is dry, use 1200-grit sandpaper to sand the new finish. Paint on another layer of white-out, let it dry, and then sand it down. Repeat this process until the desired shade is achieved.

Once you have the look you want, apply a protective coating. I’ve found that the best thing to use is polyurethane. If you want shiny teeth, use a high-gloss polyurethane, and for a more natural look, use a polyurethane with a matte or semi-gloss finish.

 

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Comments 72 comments

msorensson profile image

msorensson 6 years ago

Your answer to the challenge was commendable, habee.lol..


Mighty Mom profile image

Mighty Mom 6 years ago from Where Left is Right, CA

*wincing at the thought of tooth extraction without anesthesia*

Wow, Habee! I knew you were one tough Mama, but I had no idea you were this resourceful!

The abscessed tooth part reminds me of that excruciating (to watch) scene in the movie "Castaway."

Good job. I especially like the "don't try this at home, kids" warning:-). MM


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 6 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

OMG! are your eyes REALLY that BLUE???

Maybe they just look that way next to the white-out teeth!

I'm casting another vote here. I hope Stan doesn't penalize everyone for multiple votes. And if you win, will the Blizzard hit your teeth and cause you to scream?????

Oh, and don't use bleach, use 100 grain alcohol. You can then just light the alcohol and not have to worry about the hair dryer when you need to set things.


lorlie6 profile image

lorlie6 6 years ago from Bishop, Ca

This hub made me cry, habee! I am still crying, though, at the most descriptive adventures you describe!

Waah, waah, you've done an amazing job here, but I can't really comment further since I'm a judge on this Stan Fletcher thing.

All my best!


bayoulady profile image

bayoulady 6 years ago from Northern Louisiana,USA

What did I miss? Heck,I stay gone two days and I dunno whad up...So I guess you have been challenged or something. A bit sad...I thought I was finally going to get someone to tell me a way to whiten my teeth without buying an ebook.lol!..I wanted white teeth and sapphire eyes like you!


Stan Fletcher profile image

Stan Fletcher 6 years ago from Nashville, TN

Holy Cow Habee! This is awesome. The funny thing is, it all seems completely reasonable. I was just kidding originally, but now that you've shown my the way, no more dentist for me! I have everything I need out in the garage!


travelespresso profile image

travelespresso 6 years ago from Somewhere in this exciting world.

Habee you are a star!

This is great and I might just use some of these treatments myself especially if I ever get another abscess.....which I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy. They sound entirely plausible - perhaps you should issue a warning with this hub. LOL. Fantastic!


H P Roychoudhury profile image

H P Roychoudhury 6 years ago from Guwahati, India

Madam,

I become jealous to see your whitish teeth.


ltfawkes profile image

ltfawkes 6 years ago from NE Ohio

Admirable effort, habee, but scary. I have a funny feeling certain parts of this hub are going to work their way into my dreams tonight.

L.T.


MartieCoetser profile image

MartieCoetser 6 years ago from South Africa

Oh no! Gosh! You must be joking? I had about six struggles with abscessed teeth in my life. HoRriBle pain! One time that gum-deadening stuff of the dentist landed in my bloodstream – I almost went west! Another time I thought I was going west, because I did not eat before the shot. (It is not to be taken on an empty stomach!)

Pulling my own teeth? Are you serious? My roots are ROOTS - I will pull out my whole damn jaw with it.

Perhaps I’ll try the ‘whitening’ – but may I sue you when my teeth don’t look as pretty as yours when I’m done?

Great hub, Habee! LOL! Voted UP and UP.


drbj profile image

drbj 6 years ago from south Florida

Holle -

The Tooth Police are looking for you,

They represent dentists wanting to sue.

It is unfeeling and even uncouth,

To suggest to folks, we pull our own tooth.


nifty@50 profile image

nifty@50 6 years ago

I've been fortunate and have never had a cavity and have been to the dentist maybe 5 times in my entire life! My philosophy is your teeth are important and taken care of will serve you a life time, if I every have any problems with my teeth I wouldn't hesitate to see a dentist!


Scribenet profile image

Scribenet 6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

You have me cringing. Your description of tooth extraction was rivetting! Yikes!


dallas93444 profile image

dallas93444 6 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

Try tyeing a string around a loose tooth and tied to a door know. Slam the door and it eliminate a trip to the dentist. Save tooth for tooth fairy. I never met one, but I hear she is cute...


sheila b. profile image

sheila b. 6 years ago

Oh, boy, what a horrible subject to make so funny! I'm laughing and cringing at the same time.


Hello, hello, profile image

Hello, hello, 6 years ago from London, UK

Habee, I am glad you are my friend. That is exactly what I needed. Thank you for sharing such fantastic tricks. Where is that throne and the crown? You definitely need to be crowned. No kidding.


Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 6 years ago from United States

Habee, I loved this hub and almost fell off the chair laughing so hard from the horror of the procedure.


Neil Sperling profile image

Neil Sperling 6 years ago from Port Dover Ontario Canada

LOL - could you not use duct tape to hold a tooth cap in place while the glue sets? It all seems so real.


prasetio30 profile image

prasetio30 6 years ago from malang-indonesia

Habee, welcome come back. You teach me with something new like this one. Thank you very much. Take care!


Loves To Read profile image

Loves To Read 6 years ago

Wow Habee, this certainly puts a whole new meaning to the Iron Chef. he he

I may have missed something just like Martie said but you certainly wrote a good one here.

My husband has pulled the molars out of our son and daughters mouth with pliers, at their request. But the hammer and chisel bit got me.

Love and Hugs


DeBorrah K. Ogans profile image

DeBorrah K. Ogans 6 years ago

Habee, This is one is quite interesting? You were really in some dreadful pain girlfriend! I am not sure if I want to be my own dentist lol! But in case of an emergency thanks for the tips!

Are you kidding about the whiteout? What beautiful pearly whites you have...

Thank you for sharing, In HIS Love, Peace & Blessings!


Allan Douglas profile image

Allan Douglas 6 years ago from Great Smoky Mountains, Tennessee

A lot of the trouble with sculpty can be avoided by using Epoxy Wood Putty. Self-sticking, no heat required, sets up firm in 5 minutes, hard as nails in 24 hours.

Tastes kinda funny though.

Congratulations on meeting the challenge!


DoorMattnomore 6 years ago

HAHAHAHAAAA white out. ;) The whole tooth pulling out bit made me wince. My dad was convinced he was a dentist and all my baby teeth were yanked with plyers the moment they showed any wiggle. ugh....great hub Habee. I shuddered, gasped, had to look away for a minute and still laughed!!


Garnetbird 6 years ago

Yo're very brave--I LOVE the idea of filling your own cavities with glue. I use a store bought whitening tray and fill it with over the counter white-gell; then I scrub it off with baking soda. My teeth don't look great, but they're nicer than before!


anglnwu profile image

anglnwu 6 years ago

Habee, so good to have u back. Looks like there's nothing a good hair-dryer will not do when it comes to fixing dental problems. Your hub had me wincing one moment and smiling the next--it's a delightful read. Awesome!


2besure profile image

2besure 6 years ago from Charlotte, North Carolina

I had a tooth that lost a filling. I patched it with that dental putty I found in the drugstore. It worked fine, because the tooth had previously had root canal. This will hold until I get to the dentist.


MPG Narratives profile image

MPG Narratives 6 years ago from Sydney, Australia

Seriously, what contest? I've been busy for a while and come back to find dead kittens and no need for dentists! I am still laughing, Habee, you are one tough girl. Voted up.


mysterylady 89 profile image

mysterylady 89 6 years ago from Florida

I have a friend who actually used Super Glue to repair a broken tooth! Eventually he did go to the dentist.


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Thanks, Melinda!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

MM, I'm not as tough these days as I used to be!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Too funny, Austin! Nope, the eyes are fake, but the teeth are real!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

I understand, Laurel. Can you be bribed?? lol


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Jackie, read my hub about teeth whitening!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Thanks, Stan! I'm loving your contest!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Travel, I placed a warning at the top!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

HP, I whiten them at home!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Sorry, LT!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Sorry, Martie - no lawsuits allowed! lol


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Drbj, at least it's not the tooth Nazis!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Nifty, there have been times when my dentist was my best friend, for sure!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Scribe, that really happened, too!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Dalls, my hubby was the tooth fairy once for a Halloween party - VERY scary!!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Sheila, don't you love having a spectrum of emotions at the same time? lol


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

HH, it's so good to see you, my friend!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Pam, glad you got some good chucks from my hub!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Neil, my hubby is king of duct tape! Might work if the tooth is dry enough. lol


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Hi, Prasetio! How ya been?


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Lovestoread, you have tough kids!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Yes, Deb - the whole hub is a joke. I don't think white-out would stay on teeth. Unfortunately!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Allan, great idea!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Oh, Doormat, that must have been terrible!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Oh, Doormat, that must have been terrible!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Cool, Garnet!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Anglnwu, it's GREAT to be back!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

2be, my daughter used that stuff, and it worked well.


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

MPG, Stan's just-for-fun contest!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Mystery, I don't see why that wouldn't work - at least temporarily!


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK

I don't know why my own messages here do not show up. It must be a communist conspiracy!

Hold on! This time it's published. Let me try again then:

As one of the three judges of this here competition may I just say that I consider this Hub to be a likely candidate for first prize? A candidate, mind you, not a cert.

May I also casually mention that we have formed a new charity, coincidentally called “The Three Judges Charity” and any contribution you may care to make to it shall be given the consideration it deserves?

Furthermore, I wish to give the lie to inaccurately spurious and dastardly rumours spread by a person who shall remain nameless (let’s call him Stan for argument’s sake) that we shall be happy with bribes of only chocolates and flowers? Naturally we live for literature and are doing this for the good of humanity, but any poor chump who thinks that he or she will have a chance in hell of winning this competition with a bunch of flowers, has another thing coming. ;-)


ehern33 profile image

ehern33 6 years ago

Tooth extraction without anesthesia? Done that.

Filling cavities? Done that.

Getting tooth capped at home? Priceless!

Just to funny!!


lilmissbookworm profile image

lilmissbookworm 6 years ago

wow, although this all seems do able I don't think I would have the courage to do it myself , with my luck I would probably pull the wrong tooth out or some thing. Good hub.


ethel smith profile image

ethel smith 6 years ago from Kingston-Upon-Hull

Are you booking appointments for hubbers?


Ben Zoltak profile image

Ben Zoltak 6 years ago from Lake Mills, Jefferson County, Wisconsin USA

Damn Habee, just...damn woman!

*grin*white-out*grin*

Ben


Cheeky Girl profile image

Cheeky Girl 6 years ago from UK and Nerujenia

Aaah Teeth, everyone's favorite subject, I notice! Hehehe! I smiled at the White-out way of whitening teeth. Some countries can do dental care on the cheap. Asia is most people's fave at the moment, it they feel the need. I have a friend who got amazing work done in the Philippines for just £160, it would have been thousands elsewhere. Pulling one's own teeth, yeeeugh! Great hub, Habee!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Ah, De Greek...what about some homemade goodies??


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Ehern, glad you got some chucks!


susansisk profile image

susansisk 6 years ago from Georgia, USA

This was fascinating. Funny thing, I actually thought about Sculpy last year when I was told I needed two crowns. Chicken to try though. I think I will try the superglue sometime.


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Funny, Bookworm! Thanks for reading!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Sure, Eth - wanna schedule one??


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Hi, Ben! Glad you liked it!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Cheeky, great to see you!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Susan, just make sure your teeth are dry! lol


aldo 3 years ago

umm, this whitout is just dissolving in my mouth and giving me headaches

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