Do your kids find everything to do with dental health and their teeth boring? Today, our Calgary dentists share some fun dental facts to help pique their interest!
Even ancient populations understood the importance of oral hygiene
While ancient oral hygiene methods and practices seem rudimentary compared to those we use today, people back then had figured out a connection between oral hygiene and strong, healthy teeth.
Ancient people tried many different methods to keep their teeth clean. Some would go so far as to chew tree bark or wooden sticks with frayed ends to clean their teeth. Ancient Egyptians brushed their teeth using a powder made from pulverized eggshells and ox hooves mixed with water.
The modern toothbrush was not developed until the 1700s
A man in England named William Addis attached boar bristles to a bone handle to create the first mass-produced toothbrush. In the 1930s, brushes with nylon bristles and ergonomic handles were developed. These products seem primitive compared to modern toothbrushes, but they were highly innovative at the time!
Not even the Tooth Fairy is immune to inflation
Today, the Tooth Fairy needs a lot more silver than she did in 1900 when she left an average of twelve cents per tooth. In 1998, she left an average of one dollar. In 2013, the going rate for a tooth reached an average of $3.50. In 2018, it was not uncommon for children to find a $5 bill under their pillows! How much do you get?
North Americans use around 3 million miles of dental floss every year
But we're still not flossing enough! Only 30% of North Americans report flossing once a day.
The average human produces 25,000 quarts of spit in a lifetime
That's enough drool to fill two swimming pools! Gross.
Teeth can tell us a lot about the past
Teeth are the hardest part of any mammal, which means they are the part most often fossilized. The size, number, shape, and organization of the teeth are different in every mammal species, making them very useful in classifying organisms (taxonomy). Without teeth, the fossil record would be quite a lot harder for us to understand.
The United States has the most cavities per person out of all the countries in the world
On the other hand, in some countries (like China), people eat such small amounts of sugar that entire cities are entirely cavity-free.
'Long in the tooth' is a phrase meaning 'old'
This expression originated with horses. As horses age, their gums recede, making it seem like their teeth are growing. The longer the teeth look, the older the horse.
Snails have teeth, lots of them
Snails and slugs eat with a jaw and a flexible band of thousands of microscopic teeth called a radula. The radula scrapes up, or rasps, food particles and the jaw cuts off larger pieces of food, like a leaf, to be rasped by the radula.
According to Louisiana law, if you bite someone with your natural teeth, it's assault, but if you bite them with dentures, it's aggravated assault
This is because while simple assault is committed with your person, and aggravated assault is committed with a dangerous weapon (which dentures are if you're using them for biting people).