For the series “Objects That Have the Power to Disturb Me”, here's this device developed by the University of Otago, New Zealand. Researchers present it as "the first dental device in the world to lose weight". What does he do? It essentially prevents patients from opening their mouth more than 2mm.
Guys, this is creepy. Such a thing brings to mind medieval torture. The system, based on magnetic devices and customized locking bolts, is fixed by the dentist to the first molars with orthodontic cement. It doesn't limit breathing, it doesn't limit speech, but it actually keeps people in need of a liquid-only diet.
With your mouth closed to lose weight
In a study published in the British Dental Journal, seven participants (both healthy and obese) wore DentalSlim devices for 14 days. They received a commercially available liquid weight loss diet, which provided them with 1.200 kcal of energy per day. The average weight loss over this period was 6,36 kg (14 lbs).
If that sounds absurd, here's something you may not know. I didn't know it, for example. The jaw locking device appears to have been conceived as a less invasive, less dangerous and more humane way of improving a practice in use in the 80s. Doctors surgically closed the jaws of some patients. A practice that put people at serious risk of suffocation in case of vomiting.
To avoid this possibility, DentalSlim Diet Control is equipped with a tool of emergency release that users can carry with them at any time. No study participant reported using this key, although one patient admitted to "cheating" by smuggling in melted chocolate and fizzy drinks.
It takes time to change habits
"The main barrier people find in losing weight is consistency," says the professor Paul Brunton, professor of health sciences at the University of Otago, and head of this project.
This device helps them establish new habits by allowing them to follow a low calorie diet for a period of time. It really starts the process of losing weight. It is a non-invasive, reversible, economical and easy to perform alternative. There are no negative consequences with this device. "Paul Brunton
I continue to be chilled, I have to be honest. But I know that there are people who are forced to have pieces of their stomach removed, or to have rings inserted to close it: procedures that are much more invasive and risky. There are people who are really struggling to lose weight, when losing weight means saving their life. For them, perhaps, this hideous "little tooth machine that opens the mouth" is a way to trigger the spark that brings them back to different eating habits.
The document is freely accessible on the British Dental Journal.