Dental professional alerts scrolling through charming photos of pet dogs and felines could harm your teeth
Do you ever find yourself scrolling through pictures of cats and dogs thinking, ‘It is so cute I could eat it’?
Well, it’s called cute aggression and it might be bad for your teeth, according to one dentist.
Cute aggression is a type of ‘dimorphous expression’ — where your outward actions or expressions don’t match how you’re feeling on the inside. For example, crying out of sheer happiness.
Dr Rizwan Mahmood, a dentist based in London, claims it can result in ‘crunching and biting our jawline tightly’.
Do you ever find yourself scrolling through pictures of cats and dogs thinking ‘It’s so cute I could eat it’? (File photo of the Netherland’s Eveline Smit’s YouTube-famous daschund and a duck)
Well it’s called cute aggression and it might be bad for your teeth, according to one dentist (File photograph by Bridget Davey in England)
Dentist Dr Rizwan Mahmood claims cute aggression can result in ‘crunching and biting our jawline tightly’, which he said risks ‘cracking, chipping and breaking our teeth (File photo)
This, he said, risks ‘cracking, chipping and breaking our teeth’.
And it could be easier to do dental damage than you think.
For instance, Love Island star Mollie May this week admitted to grinding her teeth so much one fell out, claiming cute aggression was to blame.
She said: ‘I’m my own worst enemy because whenever I look at the cats or I look at Ellie Bellie (her stuffed toy elephant) or I just talk to Tommy in a stupid baby voice, I do this thing where I grind my teeth.
‘I bite down and my tooth literally came off last night.’
Dr Mahmood, of Ruh Dental, which has clinics in Manchester and London, said: ‘It’s an instant physical response when humans see something cute like a fluffy kitten, puppy or rabbit which makes them react physically rather than verbally.
‘It doesn’t necessarily take too much pressure to do the damage either.
‘So, if you are scrolling through cute footage on Instagram or TikTok, be mindful of your mouth.
‘If you see something cute, verbalise it instead of physically reacting to it. It could save you a lot of money, and toothache.’
Bizarre: Molly-Mae Hague has admitted to damaging a tooth because she couldn’t cope with the cuteness of her cats or Ellie Bellie
Dr Mahmood, who works at Ruh Dental – a cosmetic dentist with clinics in Manchester and London, said: ‘It’s an instant physical response when humans see something cute like a fluffy kitten, puppy or rabbit which makes them react physically rather than verbally (File photo)
Dr Mahmood warned that if you have cosmetic dentistry, the cuteness could be costly (file photo)
He also said it could prove ‘extremely expensive’ for people with porcelain veneers because ‘they can crack under pressure’.
However, not all dentists are convinced it’s something to be alarmed about.
Dr Alan Clarke, of Paste Dental in Belfast, said the cute aggression would have to be an ‘overwhelming urge for hours’ to do any real damage.
He said: ‘The literature says that it can indeed lead to tooth grinding or clenching.
‘But the jury is out as to how much of an impact it has, and I feel this is very person specific.
‘You would need to view a lot of puppies and feel this overwhelming urge for hours on end to leave an impact your dentition.’
Dr Clarke added: ‘The occasional fluffy kitten or a doggo in a pram is not likely to cause terrible damage and might release enough serotonin or dopamine to boost your mood for hours.’