6 Surprising Fun Dental Facts
We use them every day to speak, chew food, smile, or open up difficult packages. We use them every day without even being aware how and when. But how much do we really know about teeth? There are still many misconceptions and false beliefs when it comes to teeth, so here are some surprising and fun dental facts that will both surprise and educate you.
Teeth Tell Stories about You
Just by examining your teeth, scientists can tell many things about you. Our teeth reveal what you eat and drink, how old you are, and even where you may have lived on Earth. They also carry important clues about our health, such as periods of illness or stress that we have endured. In a way, our teeth contain records of our personal history.
Each Tooth is Unique
There are no two teeth that are completely identical. Whether we’re talking about our permanent (adult) teeth or childhood teeth. There are several types of teeth, but each tooth is of unique size and shape, and they differ from person to person.
Our Tooth Blueprint is There from Day One
Teeth begin to form before we are born. When a baby arrives, the crowns of their “baby teeth” are already under the gums, ready to break through when the time arrives. the first tooth starts to come out between 3-6 months of age. The roots and crowns of adult teeth form under the baby teeth throughout the childhood. When the time is right, they will begin pushing them out. Today’s kids get about $2 per baby tooth, while in the 1950s, the Tooth Fairy gave 25 cents.
Oral Health is a Window to General Health
A dentist can tell a lot about your general health just by examining your teeth. Many risk factors for conditions and diseases play a factor in our oral health. For example, prolonged stress can show symptoms in the mouth with periodontal disease, ground teeth, or heart disease. Bacteria-caused oral infections and inflammation may be linked to clogged arteries or heart disease, while tooth loss may indicate the condition of osteoporosis.
A Tooth Infection Can be Lethal
The mouth is very close to major arteries and sinuses. A tooth infection can quickly spread to the blood and be pumped throughout the body. Whenever you feel that there’s an infection or abscess, always visit your dentist for a check-up as soon as possible.
People Have Been Caring for Their Teeth for Thousands of Years
Our ancestors didn’t have toothbrushes but they used twigs (the frayed ends) to chew on for the purpose of cleaning. Egyptians have used ground animal hooves and crushed eggshells to polish and clean their teeth (about 5,000 B.C.). In the 18th century, a British inventor made the first toothbrush adapted from a design first seen in China. It was a bone handle that held bone bristles inserted in small holes. Not until the 1930s did toothbrushes with nylon bristles arrive. The first electric toothbrush was introduced in the 1950s.
There are a lot more astonishing facts that you probably didn’t know about your teeth. They are unique and are the window to our personal history and overall health. Dental physicians and assistants are trained to follow all the clues regarding our oral health. Dental Specialties Institute, Inc. is a highly-regarded Californian Institute that provides education and extensive training for the job of Dental Assistants in California.