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Dennis Simonsen DMD - Simonsen Dental December 2014 Newsletter Forward to a Friend   Submit Question
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A Brief History of Toothbrushes and Toothpastes
You may be surprised to learn that the tradition of brushing teeth goes back about 5,000 years ago. Archeological evidence reveals that both the Egyptians and the Babylonians brushed their teeth with frayed twigs beginning around 3500 B.C.

In the 15th century the Chinese are credited with creating the toothbrush. This toothbrush was an all-natural brush designed from boar's bristles that connected to a handle fashioned out of bamboo or bone. In 1600 B.C., the Chinese also developed 'chew sticks' from twigs, using them to keep their breath fresh.

Eventually, this early 15th century Chinese brush found its way to Europe, and was being produced with horse hairs or feathers. In 1780, the first modern toothbrush's design credit went to William Addis, who used a pig's bristles and a bone handle.

Natural bristles continued to be used until nylon was invented in the late 1930s, leading to the development of the toothbrush as we know it today. Today brushes come in all shapes and sizes, manual, electric, and battery powered for make brushing safe and easy for all ages and stages.

Toothpaste, like early tooth brushing, is attributed to the ancient Egyptians from around 5000 B.C. Later, the Greeks, Romans, Chinese and Indians adopted toothpaste. These early toothpaste included a wide variety of ingredients that would sound quite distasteful today, including powder of ox hooves' ashes, crushed bones, shells, and powdered charcoal.

Sometime after, to make the toothpaste more palatable, spices, mints, flower petals, and even salt were added. The first modern toothpaste was manufactured by Colgate in 1873 and was distributed in jars. Tubes came twenty years later. Fluoride was added in 1914 guiding us into the era of today's healthy, flavorful, effective toothpastes.

Who Visits the Dentist More?
A recent Gallup Poll reveals that people in certain states are more likely to go to the dentist than others. Now that your curiosity is peaked, are you living in a dentist-visiting state or not? It seems that if you live west of the Mississippi than are not among those who willingly visit the dentist with Arizona residents (of all the 50 states) who are the least likely to go for their dental exams. Coming in on the heels of those Arizonians, are those living in Missouri and Kentucky. Now, in contrast, the state residents most willing to go visit their dentists live in Connecticut, followed closely by residents of Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

Saliva Test May Diagnose Deadly Disease
Recent studies conducted among researchers at the UCLA show promising results in the potential of saliva testing to diagnose deadly diseases. The research focused on a comprehensive study of RNA molecules in human saliva, which showed that saliva actually contains the same disease-diagnosing molecules as human blood. Researchers claim this simple test of the patient's saliva could lead to the early diagnosis of diseases such as pancreatic and oral cancers, diabetes, and even diagnoses of autoimmune and neurological diseases. As the research continues, it is likely that future dentists may be taking saliva samples to evaluate and diagnose diseases.


Dennis Simonsen DMD - Simonsen Dental | | 503-646-3169
14125 SW Farmington Rd, Beaverton, OR 97005



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