Health and Medicine

That TikTok Is True: Dentists Really Can Tell If You've Recently Had Oral Sex

James Felton

James Felton

Senior Staff Writer

clockFeb 10 2021, 17:30 UTC
A woman receiving a dental inspection

Don't let this stop you going to the dentist (or having oral sex). Image credit: OneInchPunch/

A TikTok video by a dentist has gone viral, which isn't a sentence you expect to type very often.


The reason? Well a few days prior, TikTok user cianmcbrien posted a video with the caption "Just found out the dentist can find out whether someone has given [oral sex] or not I'm screamingggggg" while Somebody to House by Thord Yodo played in the background for unfathomable reasons.

A dentist with 685,000 followers saw the TikTok and decided to do their duty and confirm to everybody that this was the case.

 "Yeah, I get this question a lot, and yeah, we know. We know," TikTok Dentist posted, adding "How do we know? I think if we go into details, TikTok will censor it."

A few days later, after his initial video took off, he came back to explain "Palatal Petechiae" using lollipops as an analogy for the human penis, ruining dentist trips and candy while he was at it.


"Let's say you really like sucking on a lollipop, one or two here or there: not a big deal. But let's say you like to suck on multiple, multiple, multiple, multiple lollipops all the time, you got a problem: It's going to cause Palatal Petechiae which you can see here," he says in the video. "As you can see, bruising of the soft palate and irritation right there. And guys, if you have braces, all I can say is: yikes."

So, that's the TikTok version, but here's a medical case report to back it up. In 2018, a 47-year-old man went to a routine dental appointment, where it was discovered he had a lesion on his soft palate (the roof of the mouth). The patient hadn't noticed any irritation of the palate, nor spotted it at all until it was pointed out. 

All sorts of lesions can be found during examinations, with causes ranging from iron deficiency to infection (it's not always overindulgence in lollipops), and so the team took a medical history of the man.


In true medical case report form, they began by defining oral sex.

"Fellatio is defined as the stimulation of a man’s penis by a partner’s mouth by sucking or licking, although it can be undertaken by adults of any gender," the team wrote, before launching into the trauma it can cause.

"This practice has become very popular, particularly among young people, because it is considered safer than regular sex. The contact of the palate with the penile glands may cause a haematoma due to blunt trauma and dilatation of the blood vessels because of the negative pressure created while sucking."


The interview revealed that the man had oral sex, the last time being three days before his checkup.

"We found the lesion to be associated with the practice of fellatio," the team wrote. "Oral sex is a very common sexual practice, and as clinicians, we should consider it as a potential cause of palatal lesions in our differential diagnosis."

The treatment for the patient was essentially to tell him that it was nothing to worry about, and it would resolve itself all by itself. The worst trauma involved with the lesion was a slightly awkward chat with a dentist.

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