Having a strong gagging reflex can interfere with your dental treatment. In particular, many people are sensitive to the use of a physical impression material, and they can gag. This can prevent them from getting impressions made for reconstructive dentistry like dental crowns, white fillings, and more.

Acupuncture has now been proven to help with this problem, but in our office we have an even better solution. Using CEREC for most of our dental crowns, white fillings, dental bridges, and more means that your impressions can be taken digitally.

Acupuncture Studied for Impression Taking

Two significant studies have looked at the effectiveness of acupuncture in helping patients who gag when impressions are taken. The most recent was published just last month in Acupuncture in Medicine, a British Medical Journal imprint.

In this recent study, 20 patients with a history of gagging during dental impressions was given two full sets of impressions for the upper and lower mouth. In between, they were given acupuncture treatment. After each impression, they used a visual scale to register the level of gagging they experienced.

The level of gagging decreased significantly for both upper and lower impressions as a result of the acupuncture. Gagging from the upper impression decreased from 6.8 to 1.1, while the lower decreased from 5.5 to 0.4.

The earlier study was published in 2006, and used a much simpler methodology. The study used 37 subjects who had been unable to take an impression because of their gagging. After acupuncture 81% of them could tolerate the impression.

Digital Impressions Are a Better Solution

But if you’re not the kind of person who goes in for acupuncture, whether you don’t believe in it or just have nearly as much problem with needles as with impression material, you still don’t have to worry. Dr. James B. Polley rarely uses impression material. For most of the things that we need to take an impression for, such as dental crowns and ceramic fillings, we use CEREC. This not only means you can get your restorations made while you wait, it means that impressions are taken digitally.

To learn more about your reconstructive dentistry options, please contact Dr. James B. Polley in Las Vegas today.