Antioch Family Dentist Provides Dental History Insight
We don’t talk much about oral health or the history of dentistry in school the way we talk about biology and other forms of medicine. Our teeth, and the amazing advances in the dental industry, are sometimes taken for granted. We don’t think about our dentist until we are experiencing a dental emergency. However, the history of dentistry has some rather surprising facts that might have you delving a little deeper into the interesting world of dentistry.
1. Paul Revere Was Once a Dentist! - Best known as an American Hero for his ride during the Revolutionary War to warn that the British were coming, Paul Revere was also a silversmith and also worked for a short time as a Dentist! Revere also identified a body by the dental bridge that Revere had created for the man. In 1768, this was the very first case of dental forensics!
2. Washington's Dentures Made from Hippopotamus NOT Wood- Most people believe that the first dentures were made of wood and worn by the first president, George Washington. This is purely myth! Washington's dentures were designed by Dentist John Greenwood and were made from hippo ivory, brass, gold wiring, and real human teeth.
3. Women Could Be Dentists Before They Could Vote- The first licensed female dentist was Lucy Beaman Hobbs. She was licensed in 1866, 50 years before she would even be able to vote. The earliest known dentist was a man named Hesi-Re who lived in Egypt more than 5,000 years ago.
4. Ancient Greeks Brushed with Rust- Ancient Greeks made their own toothpaste using pumice, coral powder or iron rust, alabaster, and talc. Twigs from trees were dipped in the mixtures and then chewed on to clean the teeth.
5. People Have Been Flossing Since 1882- The first commercial dental floss was manufactured in 1882 by Codman and Shurleft Company but the official patent was issued to Johnson & Johnson in 1898. Until 1940s and World War II floss was made from silk. During the war, floss became manufactured from nylon as it was cheaper and more readily available.
The History of Dentistry is a fascinating subject to study. Oral health habitats have evolved over the last several centuries and will continue to evolve in the future. Make sure to ask your Antioch family dentist about new advancements in dentistry at your next check up! Need to schedule an appointment? Please call our office at (925) 777-1719.