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Redheads Are Sensitive To Pain

Redheads' Pain Intolerance Puts a Dent in Their Dentistry

When it comes to your biannual dental checkups, is there anyone out there who really enjoys going? If you're a redhead, you might just have more of a cause for your discomfort, according to a recent study.

"The reason we studied redheads in the beginning, it was essentially an urban legend in the anesthesia community saying redheads were difficult to anesthetize," anesthesiologist Dr. Daniel I. Sessler told the New York Times. "Redheads really do require more anesthesia, and by a clinically important amount," he added.

On top of that, the ginger-haired also need a heftier dose of local anesthetics, like Novocaine. As a result, they're two times less likely to visit the the dentist than their blond-, brunette-, and black-haired counterparts. It's all due to a mutation of the MC1R gene, which influences the redness of hair and lightness of skin. I wonder if any of these famous redheads experience dental anxiety? From the looks of their brilliant chompers, they don't.

Image Source: Getty
Join The Conversation
fishbulb fishbulb 7 years
I read that this gene mutation also causes redheads to be more susceptible to medication side effects. Not only that, they have more intense highs from drugs. This gene essentially causes them to feel everything to a higher degree. I am not a redhead, but my father is.
L0neLyHeArT L0neLyHeArT 7 years
That's interesting. I never knew that.
Florida-Snow Florida-Snow 7 years
I'm a redhead and I hate the dentist with a passion. I don't know if the pain-intolerance is isolated just to my mouth, but it seems pretty likely. I hate the dentist. It hurts a lot. :(
pinkpeonygirl pinkpeonygirl 7 years
I am not a redhead but when I need a anesthesia then they have to give me more than the usual amount, but that's just because I'm so anxious I guess. At the dentist I try to have as much work done without the Novocaine as possible.
risqueredhead risqueredhead 7 years
this is true for me, I always need extra anesthetic at the dentist, and there are certain tools I can't have them use. There's this pick thing that sprays water [I don't remember the name] and it's horribly horribly painful for me.
lizlee89 lizlee89 7 years
ClassicalTorture ClassicalTorture 7 years
I'm a redhead who's had extensive dental/orthodontic work in my life, and I've never really minded it. I'm not sure I believe this.
meowalycat meowalycat 7 years
Ah so perhaps this contributes to why I hate the dentist so much.
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