During your next dental visit, give thanks to George Green, who patented the first electric dental drill in 1875. Dentists no longer had to use their hands and wrists to grind away at patients’ teeth. Green’s invention helped professional dentistry become more efficient and effective, which improved care for practitioners and patients alike. Green would be pleasantly shocked and amazed by the profession’s tools of today!
The office of Perry L. Jeffries, DDS and Associates, PA has a state-of-the-art facility that’s your resource for the best in modern dentistry. We’re an excellent one-stop solution for the oral healthcare needs of your whole family.
Personal dental hygiene products for at-home use have also improved by leaps and bound since Green’s era. Here are some fun facts about the evolutions of the three mainstays.
Toothbrushes:During the Tang Dynasty (619-907), the Chinese fashioned toothbrushes out of bristles taken from the coarse neck hair of cold-climate hogs. The hairs were implanted into tiny holes in the bone or bamboo handles. In the early 17th and 18th centuries, dentists in France were the first Europeans to encourage people to use toothbrushes. In 1780, British rag merchant William Addis started to mass-produce toothbrushes of bone and horsehair. Yank H.N. Wadsworth filed the first U.S. patent for a toothbrush in 1857, and American companies entered the mass-production market around 1885. The company DuPont came up with the first nylon-bristle toothbrushes in 1938.
Toothpaste: Individuals concocted their own versions of it thousands of years ago, but commercial toothpastes evolved throughout the 1800s, when soap and chalk were added and Colgate came out with toothpaste in a jar.
Dental floss: Prehistoric humans used it—whatever “it” consisted of back then—to wheedle stuff from between their teeth. Fast-forward to New Orleans in the early 1800s, when a local dentist came up with floss made of silk thread. Later in that century, a Massachusetts company marketed unwaxed silk floss for home use. Johnson & Johnson patented dental floss in 1898, and nylon replaced silk in the 1940s.
Perry L. Jeffries, DDS and Associates, PA has a well-established reputation for providing excellent care and compassionate service. Whether it’s time for your kids’ twice-yearly checkups or you have a toothache, rest assured that we’ll provide the expert service you need and expect. Please don’t hesitate to call us to schedule an appointment.
By Perry L. Jeffries, DDS and Associates, PA
September 28, 2022