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Dental device distracts brain from shot pain

May 24, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
Hate going to the dentist? You're not alone. Fifty percent of all Americans say they dread going. The biggest reason? Painful injections. But now a new device is giving patients a little distraction from the pain.

"If I tell a parent a child needs a filling or a restoration, the first question typically that's asked of me is, 'Is he or she going to need the shot?'" said pediatric dentist Dr. Jane Soxman.

But now a new handheld tool is taking the sting out of the shot and sending good vibes your way. The DentalVibe looks and sounds a lot like an electric toothbrush. Its tip has two prongs that vibrate your gums, while a space in-between them allows your dentist to inject anesthetic.

The vibration reaches the brain before the pain sensation does, blocking the patient's brain from feeling the injection.

"The vibration is going on on both sides of this needle stick, and so you're preventing that signal from getting out," said Andrew Weiman, Bresslergroup product development specialist.

Use of the DentalVibe is not limited to pediatric patients. Doctors can use the device on their adult patients as well.

The DentalVibe Injection Comfort System just rolled out earlier this year and it's slowly showing up at local dentists' offices.

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