The Invention of Braces

After the initial invention of braces there have been many advances that have been made to the world of orthodontics. Since Dr. Christensen has recently joined the Burg team as our first orthodontist, let’s take a moment to look back on the history of braces and how much has changed. This progress has made orthodontic care more efficient, easier, and safer.


The beginning


Researchers have found that evidence of braces can be found back in ancient times. It was Hippocrates and Aristotle who first began to wonder if there were any ways that the teeth could be straightened, along with mending other dental problems of the time. It seems as though at least some of their research and findings went into effect. Archaeologists have found the mummified remains of people dating back to about 300 BC with metal bands and catgut around their teeth. The catgut was made from animal intestines and was used to close the gaps between teeth. Rudimentary methods were used in the beginning to test and record the treatments such as finger pressure.


Making progress

 pierre fauchard

True progress beyond this didn’t seem to be made until the 17th century. From there all the way to the 19th century, the largest advances within orthodontics took place. Pierre Fauchard became known as the father of modern dentistry, and made some of the greatest discoveries when it came to orthodontic work. Possibly the most well-known of his works was a book titled The Surgeon Dentist which was published in 1728. In it he went into great detail with everything from basic oral anatomy to the most complex orthodontic methods that were known at the time.


In 1819, the wire crib was invented, which was the basis for modern braces as we know them today. It was in this same century that gum elastics were first used in 1843. The next few years were a time for many dental advancements, all of which got us closer to where we are today.


In the early 1900s, Edward Angle was seen as the father of American orthodontics. He devised a system that classified how crooked the teeth are, and what needs to be done. This system is still in effect today.


Be glad that your orthodontic work can be taken care of Dr. Christensen now rather than the old methods that were at one time used. Orthodontics has been through many changes over the years, and may go through more once newer techniques are discovered. These make straightening your teeth easier and safer than they were thousands of years ago.

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