The origins of dentistry can be traced back to ancient times in Egypt and Sumeria. There are early texts and inscriptions that mention diseases of the teeth. In fact, the very first dentist was thought to have resided in Egypt in 2600 BC. According to an inscription on his tomb, Hesy-Re, an Egyptian scribe, was called “the greatest of those who deal with teeth, and of physicians.”
The Beginning of Modern Dentistry
Although dentistry goes way back, modern dentistry is thought to have taken hold in the 1700s. The year 1723 brought the publication of The Surgeon Dentist, A Treatise on Teeth by Pierre Fauchard, a French surgeon. Due to this book, the title “The Father of Modern Dentistry” was bestowed upon Fauchard. The book was the first of its kind to describe the actual practice of dentistry, including oral anatomy, denture construction, and restorative techniques.
Dentistry found its way to America in 1760 as dentist John Baker immigrated from England. Just eight years later the famous Paul Revere would advertise his services as a dentist in the Boston newspaper. Throughout the 1700s dentistry continued to flourish. The first patent for porcelain teeth being was registered in 1789, and the first dentist’s chair constructed in 1790.
The 19th Century
The 1800s brought great advances in science and education and dentistry progressed along with it. The American Journal of Dental Science beginning its publication in 1839. The world’s first dental journal paved the way for more people to follow the profession and just one year later in 1840, the Baltimore College of Dental Surgery and the American Society of Dental Surgeons was founded.
The year 1841 brought dental regulations into the United States with the American Dental Association following in 1859. Throughout the rest of the 19th century, new innovations in dentistry such as the rubber dam, the first electric dental engine, and Wilkerson hydraulic chair were introduced.
The 20th Century
By the turn of the 20th century, tube toothpaste grew in popularity and brought personal dental hygiene into the minds of the populace. New innovations and great strides in technology allowed the practice of dentistry to flourish and inventions like the anesthetic Novocain, the nylon toothbrush, and water fluoridation entered into the culture. Fluoride toothpaste was developed in the 1950s, and the rest of the century continued to see new dental innovations with tooth-colored restorative materials, teeth bleaching kits, and modern dental composite resin.
Modern dentistry in the Information Age continues to advance as our digitally connected world spreads information across the internet. The world is becoming more and more knowledgeable about oral health and hygiene as we advance through this age of technology. For more information on how you can maintain optimum oral health, contact us and the dentists in London Ontario at the Cosmo Dental Centre.