At True Dental Care Preston our focus is usually on the business of maximising your dental health.
But as dental professionals we also like to enjoy ourselves now and then.
And looking back, to see what people have believed historically, and sometimes still do believe about dental health, can be entertaining and sometimes a little odd.
And that’s what we’re going to do today, take a look at some of the more interesting aspects of dental history, a few modern misconceptions, and an interesting fact or two about teeth.
Historical Dental Treatments
Toothworms cause toothaches. For 1000’s of years, people have believed that toothaches were caused by toothworms – little worms that would bore into teeth just like teeth were rotting fruit. The cure for toothworms varied depending on the culture.
In medieval times, honey was part of the answer to toothache. A sore tooth was covered with honey hoping that the airtight seal the honey created would force the worm out for air. For Aztecs, the answer was heat, not sweet. They believed in burning the toothworm out by chewing chilis. The strange belief in toothworms lasted until the 1700, when microscopes made believing it impossible.
Donkey’s milk. In ancient Greece, donkey’s milk was used as a mouthwash and to support the strength of the gums and teeth. While this isn’t exactly unhealthy, it probably had no dental effects other than as good nutrition.
Roman mouthwash. The main ingredient in Roman mouthwash was Portuguese urine. The Romans believed swishing this urine in your mouth would help your breath and whiten your teeth. While this sounds a bit odd, the ammonia in urine is a naturally occurring cleaning agent that has been used for many years. It’s also a natural whitener, so it improved smiles. Nowadays, fortunately, we have better teeth whitening options!
Fingernails. Some ancient people believed that if you trim your fingernails on a Friday, your toothache would be banished for a week.
Dentists are unconcerned about patient pain. This is certainly not true at True Dental Care Preston! Our treatments are carefully planned to be painless. In the case of a treatment that might cause discomfort, we offer a range of anaesthesia options to ensure a pain-free dental experience.
Silver fillings are safe. In reality, degraded amalgam fillings can leak mercury, which has been linked to a variety illnesses and disorders. Fillings can be damaged by hot drinks and foods, chewing gum, bruxism, or just the attrition that comes with time. Then, mercury can leak from the fillings.
Kids are inherently more prone to decay than adults. This is not true, though children lack the coordination required for a good job brushing. This is why True Dental Care Preston focuses on teaching your child good brushing techniques. Until children have sufficient motor skills to brush and floss completely, you need to help them.
Fun Dental Facts
Teeth as an inconvenience? Roald Dahl, who wrote “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” had every one of his teeth pulled out when he was only 21 years old. He thought they were more trouble than they were worth and even tried to persuade others to follow his example.
Teeth Tattoos. Teeth Tattoos (“Tattooths”) allow people to get images printed onto their caps and crowns. Patients wishing to get tattooths have their caps and crowns sent to laboratories where the images are printed onto them. At the moment it is not possible to get tattoos on healthy teeth, and tattooths are semi-permanent; they can be removed by removing the cap or crown.
Dental floss for Freedom! In 1994, an inmate escaped from a West Virginia prison by braiding dental floss into a rope and using it to get past a wall! If he’s that serious about his dental hygiene, we bet he has a heck of a smile!
Teeth begin to grow before you are even born. They begin to grow while still in the womb though they don’t usually break through the gumline until between 6-12 months of age.
The mouth produces on average 21,024 litres of saliva, enough to fill a small swimming pool, although we’re not sure why anyone would!
True Dental Care Preston for your Dental Health
The foundation of True Dental Care Preston is a passion for healthy beautiful smiles. Our team is composed of Australian Trained Dentists, nurses and a prosthetist. We offer general dentistry, implants and cosmetic dentistry, and emergency services, all in our advanced facility with a highly-trained staff and cutting-edge technology.
True Dental Care Preston offers a large range of treatment options from pain management to implants and Invisalign.
Call us on (03) 9131 5952 or visit us at 358 Bell St in Preston.