August 17, 2020

7 Surprising Facts About Orthodontics!

Boy smiling with braces

Orthodontics are borderline magic, helping patients achieve the straight smiles of their dreams. Whether it’s braces, clear aligners, or another option, you’ve probably needed orthodontics at some point in your life. This specialty has become an important part of dentistry over the years, yet the history of orthodontics remains unknown to the majority of the population. That’s why your orthodontist has included 7 of the most interesting facts about straightening teeth! Read on to learn more and satisfy your curiosity.

#1. The Word “Orthodontics” Comes from the Greeks

“Ortho” means straight, and “Don’t” means tooth. When you combine them, you get orthodontics, or straight teeth!

#2. People Have Always Had Crooked Teeth

Crooked teeth have been around far longer than you may have guessed. In fact, archeologists found crude metals wrapped around the teeth of ancient Egyptians. And Hippocrates wrote about irregularities in the teeth around 400 BCE—that’s a long time ago!

#3. Orthodontics Became the First Dental Specialty in 1900

Founded by Edward H. Angle, orthodontics became the first dental specialty in 1900. He was the first orthodontist who dedicated his practice to straightening smiles. He also started the American Association of Orthodontists, which is an organization for orthodontists only.

#4. Gold Was the Metal of Choice for Braces Back in the Day

In 1900, it may come as a shock, but gold was the metal of choice for braces. It is incredibly malleable, which makes it perfect for shaping orthodontics. However, because it can be so easily bent, orthodontics often required many follow up visits for adjustments.

#5. Teeth Move When Pressure is Applied Over Time

Orthodontics work by applying pressure to the teeth, which gradually shifts them over time. However, habits like thumb sucking or swallowing abnormally can push teeth out of position. 

#6. Teeth Can Move Because Bone Breaks Down and Rebuilds

Your jaw breaks down and rebuilds in a process called bone remodeling. A balanced diet helps with this process, keeping your bones healthy and able to help shift your teeth.

#7. Orthodontic Treatment is a Professional Service

Orthodontics are a professional service that should always be done by a professional. Braces or aligners are tools that your orthodontist uses to allow you to achieve amazing results. However, just like a hammer in the wrong hands, orthodontics can cause more harm than help if not used by a professional.

Who knew orthodontics had such a rich history? Remember these amazing facts and be thankful for the modern technology that allows you to straighten your teeth easily! Be sure to contact your orthodontist if you have any questions.

Meet the Orthodontist

At Parker Dental & Orthodontics, Dr. James B. Donaghey is a Board-Certified Orthodontist who offers a variety of treatment options at the same location you can receive your routine checkups and cleanings. If you have questions, or if you’d like to schedule an appointment, he can be reached through his website or by phone at any of Parker Dental & Orthodontics’ 4 locations.

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