We are committed to continuously improving access to our goods and services by individuals with disabilities. This website is currently being updated to enhance the usability and experience for persons with disabilities. If you are unable to use any aspect of this website because of a disability, please call 508.832.5731 and we will provide you with prompt personalized assistance.

176 Auburn Street | Auburn, MA 01501

Book an Appointment
Make Appointment

Redheads More Resistant to Novocaine

Posted on: August 17th, 2016 | Categories: Dental Tips

Although the connection seems unlikely, there is new evidence that suggests that if you have red hair, you are more resistant to local anesthetics like Novocaine. This fact leads to redheads being about 20% more likely to have anxiety about dental procedure, and that much more likely to skip a trip to their dentist! All these studies arose from an urban legend of sorts that circulated in the anesthesiologist community, claiming that people with red hair were more difficult to fully numb for procedures. Surprisingly enough, scientists found substantial evidence to support the claim.

This phenomenon occurs as a result of gene mutations. The gene in question is called MC1R gene, which produces melanin in dark haired and blonde people. When a specific mutation to this gene takes place, it produces a chemical called pheomelanin, which causes red hair and fair skin. In addition to producing these chemicals that determine hair/skin tone, MC1R also belongs to a family of receptors that receive pain signals in the brain. Research leads scientists to believe that this mutation causing the production of pheomelanin also creates a heightened sensitivity to pain. It’s also worth mentioning that this particular gene mutation does exist in non-redheads, but in much lower proportions (97% of tested redheads had the mutation, whereas it was only present in 26% of tested non-gingers).

What does all this mean for the one to two percent of humans with red hair? Well, it means that you’re more than twice as likely to avoid going to the dentist if you have the red hair gene. This obviously can lead to poor oral health, which can lead to poor overall health. So, if you or someone close to you has red, awareness is the key! Don’t be afraid to mention this to your healthcare professionals, and ask for a bit of extra Novocaine next time your getting dental work done!

Source

Posted by:

All Services in One Location

Book an Appointment
To book an appointment please feel free to call us at 508.832.5731 or complete the form below.

Terms and Conditions

Here at Central New England Dental Associates, we work diligently to protect our patient's rights and privacy. Requesting an appointment via our Internet portal is considered part of what HIPAA has identified as electronically protected information (ePHI). Unfortunately, despite the best efforts we make or take, there are people or entities that may attempt to intercept the data you transmit to us. By checking the box, and electronically making an appointment, you understand that you are making an appointment over the internet and that Central New England Dental Associates will keep this information confidential but cannot guarantee that others, outside of our practice, may not illegally intercept this communication. As a result of continuing, you are sending this transmission and accepting the inherent risk(s) associated with making this request for an appointment. As an alternative, you are always welcome to contact our office via telephone to schedule your appointment.

Georgia
Playfair
Didot