A Look Back at the History of Dentistry
Evidence shows that people have made attempts to care for the health of their teeth for thousands of years. Thanks to a long history of dental practices and discoveries, patients today can take advantage of the most advanced dental techniques and technologies available. At Ridgewood Dental Associates, we offer a comprehensive range of general dentistry services to preserve overall oral health, as well as restorative and cosmetic dentistry treatments that address dental complications and aesthetic blemishes.
Here, we look back on the history of dentistry, which has contributed to the effective and high quality dental care we receive today. Contact our Ridgewood, NJ practice to schedule an appointment with us.
Early Dental Practices
Thanks to archeological digs and ancient texts, historians have learned a great deal about the practices and lifestyles of ancient civilizations. One discovery is that ancient Sumerians, Egyptians, and Romans all showed an interest in dental practices. As early as 5000 BC, Sumerians were attempting to explain dental decay. Although they were off the mark in describing “tooth worms” as the cause of this dental damage, it is fascinating to know that dental practices were of interest so many years ago. The Egyptians and Romans also have texts that describe dental theories and practices, including various treatments for tooth decay and methods for tooth extraction. While these practices differ from the services provided today, these people deserve credit for creating the foundation of dental care.
The Father of Dentistry
Throughout the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, the profession of dentistry saw its beginnings, with many texts being published discussing various oral hygiene theories. But it is French surgeon Pierre Fauchard who is commonly known as the father of dentistry.
In 1723, Fauchard published The Surgeon Dentist. This text was the first to lay out a comprehensive system for the practice of dentistry. It contained an overview of the oral anatomy and functions, as well as restorative techniques to address common oral health problems. Fauchard was also the first to correctly identify sugars and acids as the culprits for dental decay. Fauchard’s findings are largely responsible for the modern dental techniques that are still used today.
The basic goals of dental care have changed little since ancient times. Dentists strive to maintain strong, healthy, attractive teeth for their patients. Achieving these goals is easier than ever thanks to advanced dental knowledge and dental technologies that make dental treatments more effective and comfortable for patients.
Some recent dental advances that have had a great impact on modern dentistry include tooth-colored restorations, dental implants, and laser dentistry. Our dentists continually study and practice the latest dental techniques to ensure our patients are receiving the most advanced and effective dental treatments available.
At Ridgewood Dental Associates, patients will find a comprehensive range of dental treatments that help them maintain a healthy and beautiful smile. If you are looking for quality dental care and would like to learn more about these dental treatments, contact us at your earliest convenience.