The dental profession may be older than you think. In fact, archeologists discovered an ancient infected tooth that contained evidence of a dental cleaning with flint tools. This tooth was dated back to 12,000 B.C.
The first written text we have that mentions anything about dentistry was in 5000 BC, wherein a Sumerian manuscript describes “tooth worms” as the cause of dental decay. Believe it or not, this theory wasn’t actually proven false until the 1700s.
In France in the middle ages, dentistry began to evolve. The earliest organization of dentists actually called themselves barbers. These men performed a unique combination of teeth treatments, medical treatments and – you guessed it – haircuts. Eventually, these men evolved into two groups. Barber surgeons were able to perform complex operations, while lay surgeons helped with more routine services. Eventually, France even began to regulate dental practices.
In the 1700s, dentistry spread in popularity throughout Europe and America. Pierre Fauchard, often called the Father of Modern Dentistry, wrote a book called “The Surgeon Dentist: A Treatise on Teeth”. It provided the first ever comprehensive system for treating teeth.
In 1840 the first dental college opened in Baltimore. Not long after that, in 1873, Colgate began mass producing toothpaste and toothbrushes. However, mass education about the importance of taking care of one’s teeth did not really become common knowledge until after World War II, when soldiers brought their knowledge of oral health care back to the United States.
In the past 100 years or so, technology, medicine and other innovations have made dental work faster, more beautiful and more comfortable than ever before. Want to experience more of the wonders of modern dentistry? Call Bright Dental in Lawrenceburg, Indiana at 812-656-8888 to set up an appointment with Dr. Allen Daniels.