In the United States alone, over 31 million people wear dentures as a solution to missing teeth. Though modern dentures are an excellent way of completing one’s smile, they are a far cry from what they used to be several decades ago. Here’s how the evolution of dentures over the years has transformed them from a rudimentary cosmetic solution to an advanced restoration that provides a range of benefits.
In 700 BC, the Etruscan people of ancient Italy created the first dentures. They were made from animal or human teeth and tied together using gold wires. These simple dentures were probably only meant for aesthetic purposes since the materials they used were unlikely to stand up to pressure put on them from chewing.
The earliest surviving pair of complete dentures made of wood was later discovered in 16th century Japan. Though President George Washington was also said to have wooden teeth, his dentures were actually made from a carved hippopotamus ivory plate with horse, donkey, and human teeth placed in it. These dentures became foul-smelling, stained, and were uncomfortable to wear, but the wealthy continued using them into the early 1800s.
In 1774, a British physician named Alexis Duchâteau made the first pair of porcelain dentures. Later, in the 1820’s, an English silversmith named Claudius Ash created the first pair of modern dentures by mounting porcelain teeth to gold plates. These dentures used springs and swivels to allow the teeth to work more efficiently. An alternative to pricey porcelain dentures made from hardened rubber that could be molded to fit a person’s gums for a more customized fit was introduced in the mid-1800s. They were popular into the 20th century among people of all economic levels until acrylic resin took its place.
The Benefits of Modern Dentures
There are several benefits that come with wearing modern dentures. Some of the most noteworthy ones include:
- Modern dentures are much more comfortable than ones from the past
- They restore your ability to eat a full, varied, and nutritious diet
- Partial dentures evenly distribute chewing forces to prevent unnecessary wear and tear on your natural teeth
- They keep your face from sagging by replacing the support once provided by your natural teeth
- They’re cost-effective and natural-looking
- They are removable and easy to clean
As you can see, dentures have come a long way from what they used to be. By wearing modern dentures, you’ll be able to enjoy a complete smile once again.
About the Practice
Are you a resident of the Carlisle area looking for a solution to missing teeth? Dr. Thomas Neslund and his talented team at Carlisle Family & Cosmetic Dentistry are experts at providing exceptional restorative dentistry services. They are dedicated to providing patients with excellent customer service from start to finish and making sure they feel comfortable during their appointments. If you’re missing teeth and want to learn more about Carlisle Family & Cosmetic Dentistry’s replacement options, visit their website or call their office at (717) 258-5455 to get started on your journey towards a more beautiful smile.