What are Turkey Teeth and why are UK dentists warning about this viral trend?

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The desire for a perfectly aligned and bright row of teeth at a great price leaves Brits with excruciating pain and abscesses, with the possibility of having their teeth removed

Representative picture. AFP

A recent dental trend called ‘turkey teeth’ is becoming a nightmare for British dentists, who are warning about it.

Like new BBC Hundreds of UK dentists have reportedly treated patients with serious complications after traveling abroad to obtain crowns at discounted prices.

What are turkey teeth?

When Lisa Martyn traveled to Turkey from Ireland “hoping to achieve the perfect smile for her son’s wedding,” little did she know she would be getting dentures at 48.

According to the BBC She reportedly paid £2,960 for the cosmetic treatment, which she thought were veneers but were actually a set of crowns.

Veneers are usually thin shells that are placed around minimally shaved teeth. Months later she discovered that she had indeed been given crowns.

In cosmetic treatment, 60 to 70 percent of the natural tooth is ground down to fangs or stubs before a tooth cap is bonded on top.

Patients can choose the shape, material and color of these caps, and often opt for a bright, white, symmetrical smile, the report said.

Since it involves travel to countries like Turkey, it is known as “Turk’s teeth”. The trend has become popular on social media, where a TikTok hashtag has garnered more than 130 million views, and among several reality TV influencers.

Why do dentists advise against it?

Months after Martyn returned from Turkey, she was in severe pain due to nerve sensitivity. She cannot eat properly because of the pain, has lost more than 12.7 kg and has been on painkillers for months.

As the pain increased, an infection and abscess was found in Martyn’s teeth, which she said paralyzed almost half of her face.

According to the report, she was told that the only long-term treatments available were implants or dentures.
Several British dentists have stressed that crowns can cause serious complications.

The process, they said, could result in their licenses being revoked.

According to the BBC According to the report, 597 dentists out of 1,000 said they had both treated patients with crown complications and seen patients visiting Turkey for their dental treatment.

Almost one in five respondents said repair costs exceeded £5,000.

According to a medical study, after 15 years, on average, a quarter of the crowns have to be extracted.

Crowns also increase the risk of future root canals, extractions and dentures.

“Unfortunately, many UK dentists are now picking up the pieces when something goes wrong. We strongly advise people considering this to check a dentist’s qualifications and experience, and to check they have insurance in case something goes wrong,” warned Eddie Crouch, Chairman of the British Dental Association (BDA).

With contributions from agencies

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