History Of Dentistry. Essay

1126 words - 5 pages

Magic played an important part in the treatment of dental ills, and people of early ages had odd beliefs concerning teeth. The Egyptians believed that the mouse was under the direct protection of the sun, therefore if one had a toothache the split body of a warm mouse was applied to the affected side. In India the cusped of Buddha was enshrined in a famous temple (at Kandi) and prayed to in fertility rites. Prayers were offered up to saints for the relief of pain. St. Apollonia of Alexandria, 249 A.D., was one such saint. She is now the Patron Saint of Dentistry.II. Egyptians and Chinese.The first known dentist was an Egyptian named Hesi-Re (3000 B.C.). He was the chief dentist to the Pharaohs. He was also a physician, indicating an association between medicine and dentistry. In the 5th century B.C. Herodatus, a historian, described the medical art in Egypt: "The art of medicine is distributed thus: Each physician is a physician of one disease and no more; and the whole country is full of physicians, for some profess themselves to be physicians of the eyes, others of the head, others of the teeth, others of affections of the stomach, and others of more obscure ailments". Dentistry today is somewhat specialized. The eight specialties are as follows:* 1901 Orthodontics* 1918 Oral Surgery* 1918 Periodontics* 1918 Prosthodontics* 1927 Pedodontics* 1937 Public Health* 1946 Oral Pathology* 1963 EndodonticsThe first evidence of a surgical operation was found in Egypt. A mandible withtwo perforations just below the root of the first molar indicated the establishment of drainage of an abscessed tooth. The approximate date is 2750 B.C.The splinting of teeth also was practiced by Egyptians; evidence by a specimen from Cizeh, 2500 B.C. It shows two molars fastened with heavy gold wire.The Chinese were known to have treated dental ills with knife, cautery, and acupuncture, a technique whereby they punctured different areas of the body with a needle. There is no evidence of mechanical dentistry at that time, 2700 B.C., however. Marco Polo stated that the Chinese did cover teeth with thin gold leafs only as decorations, 1280 A.D. The earliest practice of the prosthetic arts was among the ancient Phoenicians circa 500 B.C. Hammarabi, ruler of all lower Meso-potamia (1760 B.C.), established a state controlled economy in which fees charged by physicians were set. His low code contained two paragraphs dealing with teeth:"If a person knocks out the teeth of an equal, his teeth shall be knocked out.""If he knocks out the tooth of a freed slave, he shall pay one third of a mine."Teeth were knocked out as a form of punishment among these early people.II. The Greeks, Etruscans and RomansA. The GreeksThe contribution of the Greeks was mostly on the medical side. The ancient Greek physician, Aesculapius - 1250 B.C. - gained great frame for medical knowledge and skill. In time he was deified. Apollo was listed as his father. Aesculapius originated the art of bandaging and...

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