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What’s the most famous story you can think of regarding someone’s teeth? It’s probably that George Washington had wooden teeth, right? We hate to be the bearer of bad news—but this probably is not completely true.
In the case of George Washington, and many of our other founding fathers, it was probably not their teeth that were made of wood. Instead, chances are, it was the base of their dentures (their artificial gums) that were made of wood—this was very common for dental health at this time. So, you’re probably wondering what their teeth actually were made of. More than likely, the artificial teeth of George Washington, and other people at this time, were made from other people’s teeth. The most common source of these teeth were from soldiers who died on the battlefield.
Are there any other interesting stories about presidents and their dental health?
Yes, yes there are…
Let’s start with Abraham Lincoln! Rumor has it that Honest Abe had an extreme fear of the dentist. Due to this, when he needed to have a tooth pulled, he opted to do it himself! Unfortunately for President Lincoln, he was not trained in doing this and accidentally took out part of his jaw bone as well. Ouch!
There are two other presidents who did not take enough pride in their dental health as well: John Adams and Woodrow Wilson. For President Adams, he spoke with a noticeable lisp that developed after he lost his original teeth. For President Wilson, he had more cosmetic issues than anything else! Click here to see what we mean!
Make sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter to stay up to date on our blog. For our next article, we will take a stroll through the history of dentistry and where certain dental tools and procedures first developed.