Sukhmani Singh, a doctor of dental surgery candidate at the University of Minnesota, has gone viral on TikTok for her wild claim that dentists know if their patients are expecting a baby. Known as @thatdentalgal on the video-sharing platform, Singh often posts informational videos about oral health and shares how dental techniques work, all in the name of what she refers to as "edutainment."
In a video posted in early May, Singh shares with viewers that dentists and oral surgeons can often detect early signs of pregnancy by looking at a patient's mouth.
"Your dentist may be able to tell that you are pregnant," she starts. "This is not only due to nausea and enamel erosion but also from something called 'pregnancy gingivitis,' which is seen in about 30 to 50 percent of patients."
"The gums become inflamed, tender and more prone to bleeding," she explains.
The American Dental Association (ADA) reports that pregnant women have a higher chance of developing gingivitis, characterized as an "infection of the gingivae [gums] that can cause swelling and tenderness." If left untreated, it "can affect the supporting tissues that hold your teeth in place."
In some instances, pregnancy gingivitis can appear as "lumps...along the gum line and between teeth. Known as "pregnancy tumors," they are not cancerous and typically disappear post-pregnancy, but can be surgically removed if deemed medically necessary, according to the ADA.
Mothers took to the comments section on Singh's video to share their own pregnancy gingivitis stories. "My gums bled so much during pregnancy!! During my cleaning they were extra careful because even the smallest touch caused so much bleeding!" one woman shared. "My mom said the dentist asked, 'How far along [are you?]'—she didn't know she was pregnant yet!" another viewer claimed.
Others claimed that their pregnancy caused other dental issues. "Omg when I was pregnant I kid you not some of my teeth were loose I was terrified," one commenter wrote. "Lost at least 1 to 2 teeth with each pregnancy [4 kids]. No job ever gave me dental. Truly sucks," another claimed.
Singh's video was part of a series in which she tells viewers that many experienced dentists can tell a lot about your current health by checking your teeth. In other videos, she noted that they are able to infer whether a patient is an active smoker, has had an eating disorder like bulimia nervosa, is suffering from a sinus infection, or was exposed to certain medications in utero.
Newsweek reached out to Singh for comment, but she did not immediately respond in time for publication.
In other pregnancy news, a woman from South Africa has allegedly broken the world record for most children born at one time. She reportedly bore 10 children at 29 weeks pregnant on Monday, and if confirmed by the Guinness World Record committee, it will also be the first recorded case of a human having decuplets.