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It’s unclear when dentist selfies started, but once you begin looking for them (if you’re not the squeamish sort), you find them almost everywhere. We’d like to think it started with Kim Kardashian and Weird Al Yankovic, both of whom tweeted pictures of themselves in dental chairs seven years ago. Celebrities from Brooke Shields to Lady Gaga have followed suit, and even Martha Stewart got in on it, offering a play-by-play of her crown replacement in a blog post.
Kim Brinkley, a dental assistant in Dallas, says people are forever snapping selfies. Sometimes they pose with props, like the cheesy “I Love My Dentist” hanging in one examination room. “They’re excited to show their friends and family, ‘Oh look, I’m getting ready to get my tooth fixed,’” she says.
Things got so crazy that Brinkley’s office had to institute a strict “no selfies during procedures” rule last year because people randomly snap a pic even as the dentists do their thing. It’s annoying, she says, and dangerous to boot. “The doctor and assistant have to be in a certain position, and if you raise your arm up to get a picture or video you could hit one of us,” she says. “And we’re up in your mouth with tools.”