Meyer Orthodontics in Brookings Blog

Braces History to Modern Innovations in Orthodontic Care

History of Braces | Meyer Orthodontics

Dental care pops up throughout history, although the practices don’t look anything like the services you get at an orthodontist today.

Ancient Egyptians used gold bands to close dental gaps, and our founding father President George Washington was known to have several sets of dentures, although none made of wood as the legend goes.

It’s pretty obvious modern dentistry and orthodontics are improved over the days of bloodletting and tooth-worms, but how has the process of getting braces changed in the last 30 or 40 years?

Misattribution of Misalignment

The Atlantic quotes American dentist Eugene S. Talbot as saying “that malocclusion—misalignment of the teeth—was hereditary and that people who suffered from it were ‘neurotics, idiots, degenerates, or lunatics.’” This turn-of-the-century doctor couldn’t have been further from the truth, although we don’t have to tell you all that crooked teeth obviously have nothing to do with social standing!

Modern medicine determined the true cause for malocculusion, or misalignment: genetics. This means Dr. Talbot was partially right; the misalignment can be hereditary, but as a result of jaw or tooth size, rather than personality disorder.

There are a few other factors that can affect your bite, such as finger sucking, gum disease, or injury, but if you end up needing Brookings braces, it’s more than likely a result of the way your teeth fit in your mouth than anything else.

Innovations Lead to Comfort

Back to Washington’s braces. It may have been a myth they were made out of wood, but they were likely still very uncomfortable and cumbersome to speak through.

Even in the last decade, innovations allowed orthodontists to shrink down the applications of adult braces and children’s braces. This makes braces more comfortable and less invasive than ever before.

Modern Orthodontics at Meyer Ortho

Although we think it’s pretty interesting to learn about the history of dental practices, we’re thankful for the advances in modern orthodontics. And our patients sure are, too.

If you’re considering braces for you or your kids, reach out to us for a free consultation. We’re here to help!