Here are a few interesting facts about dentistry in history. Reading these may help you appreciate our modern dental practices today!
- Dentists have been around a long time. Archaeologists have evidence of the first dental fillings in people who lived between 7,000 and 9,000 years ago.
- If you had a toothache in Germany during the Middle Ages, you would have been told to kiss a donkey to relieve your pain. In earlier times, you would be instructed to boil an earthworm in oil then drop the oil in your ear.
- In 1498, China invented the first toothbrush using stiff hairs from the back of a pig’s neck. In fact, pig’s hair was used in toothbrushes until nylon bristles were invented in 1938.
- The earliest accounts of tooth brushing are from India and China in 500 BC. Brushing concoctions included soot, crushed egg shells, and ground ox’s hooves mixed with honey.
- The world’s oldest recipe for toothpaste came from Egypt in 400 AD. It contained mint, salt, grains of pepper, and dried iris flower. A modern dentist tried it and said it was not unpleasant and left his mouth feeling fresh and clean.
- In medieval Japan a white smile was considered unattractive. Women used roots and inks to stain their teeth black which they thought was much more attractive.
- In early America, the local blacksmith also doubled for the town’s dentist. How about a filling with your horseshoe?
- Contrary to popular belief, George Washington did not have dentures made of wood. His four sets of dentures were actually made of gold, ivory, lead, and a mixture of human, donkey, and hippopotamus teeth.
- Before 1960, people believed that toothaches were caused by a tooth worm. It wasn’t until 1960 that a dentist proved that tooth decay was actually caused by bacteria.
- If you had a loose tooth, tying a frog to your jaw would tighten it right up.
Aren’t you glad to know that here at Apple Dental, we have put away our frogs and earthworms and have only the most modern dental practices that have your comfort in mind? Our goal is to make dentistry pain-free. Call us today. We bring dentistry into the 21st century.