Before the Cosmetic Dentist in Wilkes Barre, These Whitened Your Teeth
Two of the most widely-used agents in teeth whitening are hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide. Thousands of years ago, people didn’t know these.
The earliest teeth whiteners were, to say the least, abrasive or corrosive in nature. Whereas the ancient Romans had urine, the ancient Egyptians had powdered pumice. Although these are no longer acceptable by today’s cosmetic dentistry standards, it’s safe to say that a cosmetic dentist in Wilkes Barre today wouldn’t be what he is today if it weren’t for:
Believe it or not, urine was like an all-purpose cream back in the day, being used from making gunpowder to making whites whiter.
The keyword is “ammonia,” one of over 3,000 chemicals present in urine (there could be others contributing to the whitening effort). Technically, the ammonia in question refers to the urea, which comprises about 9.3 grams per liter. Ammonia in the body, which is created by protein digestion, is placed into urea by the liver.
Today, health experts no longer recommend urine in any medical or dental treatment. However, the ammonia in urine still remains a widely-used active ingredient for teeth whiteners.
Chew sticks refer to sticks from any known species of plants that contain abrasive ingredients to help whiten teeth, among others. The choice of plants depends on geography; the saltbrush (or the atriplex genus) is widely used in the Middle East, while West African locals derive the sticks from orange and lime trees.
Experts still recognize the whitening properties of chew sticks in addition to its health benefits. They’re still popular in the said locations where locals prefer to preserve their way of life.
Who can forget the iconic nutrient of dental health? Fluoride has been in the dental consciousness as early as the 1800s.
Not only did Italian scientists discover the healthy properties of fluoride, they also discovered the results of too much of it. In a number of cases in 1802, several dentists reported spots in their patients’ teeth, theorizing they were a result of a chemical reaction. Despite the stains, the teeth remained relatively intact.
Soon enough, dentists began offering products with fluoride, from honey-flavored lozenges to fluoridated water. Technology kept up, with Scranton, PA cosmetic dentistry services like Back Mountain Dental using teeth whitening systems. Nevertheless, teeth whitening wouldn’t exist if nobody in ancient times bothered to share it with the world.
(Article excerpt from “A history of tooth-whitening,” The Providence Journal [c/o The Seattle Times], November 15, 2010)