Thanksgiving is a great time of year for families to gather together and appreciate the history of their lineage. With the use of family trees and new DNA analysis, any one of us can find out how far back our family goes. You might actually be related to one of the pilgrims that feasted on the very first Thanksgiving holiday. How do you think those ancestors might have cared for their dental health? Your Sheridan dentist, Dr. Donald Coon, will describe how pilgrims did their best to maintain oral hygiene.
Ancestral Dental Care
We are lucky to have many options for dental care in our modern times. In most towns, there are many dentists to choose from within a reasonable driving distance from your work or home. You also probably have easy access to a wide variety of oral hygiene products at various stores in your town. Imagine what your teeth would look if you hadn’t been using floss, a toothbrush, fluoridated toothpaste, and mouthwash your entire life? In our current times, 80% of the American population has some form of gum disease. So, Pilgrims statistics probably had them in the A+ range for periodontal disease, unfortunately.
How Did Pilgrims Brush Their Teeth?
One of the substances being used as an abrasive for cleaning teeth in the days of the Pilgrims was salt. Toothbrushes were likely made from hog’s hair fastened onto a twig or bone. American Indians relied on frayed twigs and leaves such as sage to scrub their teeth. Sage toothpaste sounds like a particularly fitting Thanksgiving-time tooth cleaner. However, it’s hard for us to imagine maintaining clean and healthy teeth without the modern dental hygiene products we’re accustomed to. Pilgrims did have one advantage over us, however. They were not exposed to as many highly processed, full-of-sugar and complex-carbohydrate foods. They consumed far more naturally grown fruits and vegetables and didn’t have to pay the financial price we do to keep their produce organic. These small blessings probably graced Pilgrims with strong tooth enamel and reduced plaque in comparison to modern day people.
Dental Checkups from your Sheridan Dentist
Are you due for a dental checkup with your Sheridan dentist? To schedule a consultation contact our 82801 dentist office at (307) 672-7567. We welcome patients from Sheridan, WY and the surrounding communities.