If you search the word “teeth” on Reddit, or through any internet advice column, you’ll see what a common issue this seems to be. Men who don’t brush for days at a time. Men turning defensive when their girlfriends ask them to go to the dentist. Men who shower every day, but whose only dental hygiene routine is stocking up on breath mints. Men who will nag their partners to brush their teeth, but who won’t do the same for themselves.
According to a survey from the Academy of General Dentistry, this is more than just an anecdotal problem. American women are more likely to get preventative dental care than men, and according to a different study from the Journal of Periodontology said men were less likely to brush regularly and do things like schedule regular dental checkups. Men are also more likely to lose teeth as they age, and develop oral and throat cancer, and gum disease. However, presumably men grow up surrounded by just as many helpful toothpaste commercials and posters in Kindergarten classrooms. Yes, going to the dentist sucks, but also, we’re all adults here. And so, I ask a question I’ve asked many, many times in my 31 years on this planet: Men, what on earth is up with you?