The internet brings a ton of knowledge into our homes, and we have become accustomed to seeking answers from the web, especially with cheerful personality overlays named Siri, Cortana, or even just Google. We are so accustomed to asking the internet for information that DIY seems the norm. Pinterest, Instructables, and similar sites are full of instructions on how to do just about anything for yourself, at your own home, using supplies you can gather for yourself.
Just as easy to find on the internet are examples of DIY fails. There are hilarious photos, often posted by the author of the disaster, showing how the simple tutorial has gone hideously awry.
These projects, while good for a laugh when shared, end up being a waste of time and supplies, and a clear illustration that not all projects can be done by just anyone with an internet connection and a can do attitude.
When DIY CANNOT Afford to Fail
Some botched nail art or a staggeringly bad hair do are minor and temporary self-inflicted harms. An ugly cookie is probably still edible. But, DIY turns dangerous when people decide to follow instructions on the internet for their own health instead of turning to trusted medical professionals.
DIY dentistry instructions are available online, and the temptation can be strong. Perhaps the individual is driven by a strong desire to pursue a natural lifestyle. It’s possible that the budget is tight and money saving is the motive. Maybe the individual does not have a regular dentist and just doesn’t know where to turn. No matter the good intention, DIY dentistry can have catastrophic costs.
Some online suggestions may not be dangerous in themselves, but if one engages in “oil pulling,” rinsing teeth with oil, for six weeks while forgoing treatment, damage can still occur that could potentially cause irreparable damage to a previously salvageable tooth. Online formulas for tooth powders to replace commercial toothpaste may be utterly benign, but they may contain ingredients that can be dangerous when used incorrectly. The lack of fluoride in the tooth powders may also exacerbate conditions from poor brushing technique. Recipes to heal caries (cavities) that call for raw meat may not damage teeth, but raw meat, prepared incorrectly, can cause terrible gastrointestinal illness.
More dangerous still than trying to use natural remedies are the sites that offer information about how to drill into your own mouth and use household products to glue cracked teeth. A mouth full of super glue is not a solution to a dental emergency; it’s a new problem in need of a solution. Temporary filling materials that claim to be dental quality are no substitute for professional care. Just because an online retailer will sell you a diamond drill bit does not mean it should be in your mouth. Your oral health deserves skilled eyes and hands.
The DIY Answer
The bottom line is that your health deserves the best care possible, and that care should involve help from a qualified professional. The best thing you can do for yourself is to find a dentist you can trust who shares your healthcare values. There’s a lot you can do at home working with your dentist to preserve a beautiful, whole life smile, but trying to go it alone is a recipe for disaster.
If you are drawn to natural dental care, consider adding CTx2 Xylitol Gum to your home care routine. The xylitol in the gum kills cavity-causing bacteria in the mouth without harming the healthy bacteria. The gum is also fluoride free and helps prevent painful dry mouth.