Hooray! It’s Teethlicious Tuesday,
There are some things in life, we think we know until someone asks us to define it. I did a brief survey of people’s definition of a dentist. I would have loved to hear alot of people’s answers but was privileged to ask a few, a combination of dentists, nurses, staff that work in the dental area and patients in the waiting area. I will share some of their answers then after we will score them. hehehehe
They are not so far from the truth but before I let in on who a dentist is, lets do a bit of history. I love history because it always makes one appreciate the journey and accomplishments.
The origins of the word Dentist
The idea that a worm traveled through your mouth and was the cause of dental pain lasted until it was proven false in the 1700s. I don’t think its proven false yet in some part of Africa. Some people are still selling that lie with their herbal preparation and some even demonstrating.
So teeth were extracted to keep mouth pain away. The concept of having a tooth extracted from the mouth through using forceps termed ‘Dental key‘ was often used to treat many diseases into the middle ages. Their work was focused solely on removing any infected teeth for alleviating pain purposes, not preventive care.
Interestingly enough, the professionals who were doing these extractions during the middle ages were not medical authorities, but barbers.
The guild that had united the barbers and surgeons was dissolved in 1745, with the surgeons going their own way. Some barbers continued their dental ministrations and were designated “tooth drawers.” (Thank God the name disappeared wont have joined hehe). A second group, as a result of the French influence, referred to themselves as “dentists,” while those who did all manner of dentistry were called “operators for the teeth.”
It was between 1650 and 1800 that the concepts behind what we now think of as dentistry got its start. The man behind the science was 17th century French Physician, Pierre Fauchard. He is called “The Father of Modern Dentistry”, and he was the brains behind many of the procedures still used in today’s society. Fauchard effectively separated dentistry from the larger field of surgery and thus established dentistry as its own profession.
Today, A dentist, also known as a DENTAL SURGEON , is a surgeon who specializes in dentistry—the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of diseases and conditions of the oral cavity. Please note and use the terms appropriately. One actually goes to a dental school to become a dental surgeon and receives a degree in Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS) or Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) so basically a dentist is a worldwide accepted nickname .
Their responsibilities include:
Dentists’ areas of care include not only their patients’ teeth and gums but also the muscles of the head, neck and jaw, the tongue, salivary glands, the nervous system of the head and neck and other areas.
Now you know who a dentist is see one near you at least twice a year to check on all these structures mentioned above, so scroll up and check the answers in the survey, RIGHT OR WRONG?? Be the judge
Thanks for reading stay tuned next week for more teethlicious updates. If you found this helpful, feel free to share and leave comments below. I’d love to hear your version of definition.
Till then Stay Gorgeous & Stay Professional.
Dr Oyaks is an oral health care blogger at Ghanahealthnest.com, a fully qualified practicing dental surgeon with a Ghanaian blood and a Nigerian mind. She has a passion for teaching and sharing oral health knowledge because it all starts in the mouth, Healthy mouth, Healthy body. Her life goal is to stay connected to the vine, stay gorgeous & stay professional. See more at www.DrOyaks.me