Dental Tips Blog


3 Tricks to Overcoming a Sensitive Gag Reflex

Going to the dentist isn’t something that a lot of people enjoy doing, especially if they have a sensitive gag reflex. If you tend to gag frequently, it can be difficult to have anything from routine x-rays to a dental exam completed. Thankfully here are a few easy tips and tricks you can try for your next check-up:

Salt on Your Tongue

Nobody really knows why, but salt can help some people make it through a dental visit without any problems. Sprinkling a small amount of salt on the tip of your tongue is all that is needed. The next time you visit a fast food restaurant, grab a few packs of salt and bring them with you to your dental appointment!

Just Smile

Smiling helps inhibit the gag reflex. The actual movement of muscles used during smiling will suppress the muscles that make you feel as if you are going to gag. Keeping a big grin on your face may feel a little silly, but it’s proven to work!

Hold Your Foot Up

If you’re able to, hold one of your feet up into the air when you start to feel a tickle in your throat. Yes, it’s a mind over matter thing, but the technique can help you get through that important x-ray to check out a toothache. If you feel like it’s not working, switch feet!

Living with a sensitive gag reflex doesn’t mean you have to avoid going to the dentist. Your dental team may have even more great ideas to help you get through your appointment gag-free…set up your visit today. Your smile will thank you!

Posted on behalf of:
Pure Dental Health
2285 Peachtree Rd #203
Atlanta, GA 30309
(678) 666-3642


Salt and Dental X-rays: What’s the connection?

Posted in Digital X-Rays

There’s a new trend in dental x-rays: salt. Why salt, you ask? It may surprise you, but it can make your routine dental x-rays a little more comfortable, especially if you have a tendency to gag during the short procedure. Basically it comes down to one very important find – some people find it useful to sprinkle a little bit of salt onto their tongue before having dental x-rays taken, because it inhibits the gag reflex. It just takes a pinch, but it may be all that you need to get you through those few shots that your dentist needs to take each year.

Gagging can have a variety of causes, and for some people it can be a difficult problem that prevents them from ever feeling comfortable in the dental chair. Some tricks work, like holding a foot up in the air, breathing deeply through the nose, or smiling. For some people though, severe gagging is just something they live with and it makes dental care a negative experience. No dentist wants this for their patients, and it can make care more difficult to complete at a high quality level.

The next time you’re headed to the dentist, if you’re a gagger, bring a small pouch of salt with you…just in case. Your dentist may not have any on hand or may have not even heard of this trick, but it can be one of the best kept secrets for patients that loathe having impressions, x-rays, or things tickling the inside of their mouth during the visit. Now you have no excuse to skip those x-rays, and your dentist will be able to get a great view to screen for cavities or bone loss!

Posted on behalf of Dr. Omar Damji, Executive Park Dentistry


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