From gold-capped teeth to golden bridges – 4,000 years of dental work

In one form or another, dentistry has been in existence for at least 4,000 years; however tooth extraction and toothache remedies go back much further. The study of ancient remains revealed the creativity in the application of cosmetic and surgical dental practices performed thousands of years back.

Dentistry in Indus valley civilization

The evidences of the earliest form of dentistry are from Indus Valley Civilization, which dates back to 7000 BC.  Sites in India and Pakistan have revealed about the dental practices used for curing tooth related ailment with bow drills, possibly, by skilled person. The study of this ancient treatment showed that the forms of dentistry used were effective and reliable.

Evidences of dental filling

The oldest evidence of a dental filling was found in Slovenia when a 6000-year-old jawbone was discovered with cavities. The cavity was deep enough to impact the dentin layer of the tooth and it had been sealed with beeswax. Scientists are not sure how effective this treatment was, but it has possibly lessened the swelling and pain.

Tooth decay in history

Tooth decay has been a problem since a long period of time. People from all around the globe have been affected by this problem. The description for causes of tooth decay is depicted in the 6000 years ivory sculptures, which was first discovered by the Sumerians. The theory was that tooth decay was the outcome of a tooth worm decimating the teeth. The holes created by cavities are quite similar to those created by worms into wood. The concept of tooth worms has been mentioned in ancient literatures of Greek, India, China, Japan and Egypt.

Dentistry in ancient Egypt

Historical evidences revealed many dental and hygiene treatments practiced by ancient Egyptians. 2,100-year-old Egyptian mummy found with gold clapped teeth. There have been many instances of dental bridges; one or more teeth are attached with the help of gold and silver wires. In many cases, a dental bridge was made using donor teeth, although the installation method and tools are not clear yet. These historical evidences prove that many good dentists arlington or oral experts lived in the history of mankind.

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