Just as you thought the internet couldn’t get any weirder, TikTok is being inundated with videos of people ‘gleeking.’
Warning: It’s pretty gross.
The term describes someone who can squirt saliva from under the tongue – which can happen accidentally while yawning, or be triggered deliberately, as demonstrated in the videos below.
One dentist (@zeina_dentist) took to TikTok to explain the bizarre bodily function, “This is called ‘gleeking’”, she said, along with a clip of a fellow TikTok user demonstrating the ‘trick.’ “It happens when a person can control their submandibular gland.”
“It can be done by pushing the tongue up and pushing the mandible forward”, she added.
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According to Dr. Daniel Aronov (@dr.danielaronov), “Everyone can do it.”
“We have glands that make saliva that sit right underneath our tongue,” Aronov said. “They release their saliva through two little openings.”
Aronov explained that you can train your tongue to squeeze the glands, and gleek. He was referring to a WikiHow article on the TikTok phenomenon.
It is beneficial, but how do you know?
Although it doesn’t mean that your body works as it should, it is not beneficial. Janet O’Mahony, MD, a Baltimore-area primary care doctor at Mercy Medical Center, told Health: “There’s nothing medical about it, but there’s nothing harmful about it.”
Mark S. Wolff, DDS, PhD, Dean of the School of Dental Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, added: “It’s the salivary glands doing what the glands are supposed to do.” We suppose this is better than the alternative.
In short, gleeking comes from “built-up watery saliva.” “As we eat, these glands are stimulated and force saliva out”, Wolff added.
The most you can garner from ‘gleeking’ is a few likes on social media.