Fascinating, Surprising, Amazing & Little Known Fun Dental Facts

  • Americans buy more than 14 million gallons of toothpaste every year.
  • Coconuts are a natural anti-bacterial food and can help reduce the risk of developing gum disease and cavities.
  • Halloween is the biggest candy-selling holiday, followed by Christmas, Easter, and Valentine’s Day.
  • 25% of adults DO NOT brush twice a day. This increases their risk of developing tooth decay by 33%.
  • Roughly 75% of school children worldwide have active dental cavities.
  • 48% of young adults have untagged themselves from a photo on Facebook because of their smile.
  • 90% of a bad breath smell originates in the mouth.
  • People who smoke are 2-7 times more likely to develop periodontal disease than non-smokers.
  • It was customary during the middle ages to kiss a donkey if you had a toothache.
  • Tooth enamel is the hardest structure in the human body.
  • Roughly 25% of American adults have no teeth.
  • The average human being produces 100,000 gallons of saliva during their lifetime.
  • Tooth decay is the second most common disease, second only to the common cold.
  • People prefer blue toothbrushes to red ones.
  • Teeth start to form before we are born.
  • Almost 65 million American adults have some form of periodontal disease. Of this number 38.4% are women, 56.4% are men.
  • Expectant mothers with poor oral hygiene are 7X more likely to deliver premature and low birth weight babies.
  • 95% of American adults with diabetes also have periodontal disease.
  • People with periodontal disease are 2X more likely to develop heart disease.
  • People who drink 3 or more cans of pop daily have 62% more tooth decay, fillings, and tooth loss than people that don’t drink pop.
  • The first toothbrush with bristles was made in China in 1498. Bristles from hogs, horses, and badgers were used.
  • Replacing a toothbrush after illnesses helps prevent the potential for re-infection.
  • It takes 43 muscles to frown. It only takes 17 to smile.
  • 61% of adults are attracted to somebody by their smile alone.
  • An apple a day may keep the doctor away, but it also makes you 3X more likely to develop dental decay.
  • Kids miss 51 million school hours a year due to dental related illnesses.
  • By drinking one can of soda daily, the average American gains 15 lbs each year.
  • The human tongue is as unique as a fingerprint. No two people have the same tongue print.
  • There are more bacteria in the human mouth than there are people on the Earth.
  • The average woman smiles 62 time a day. The average man? Only 8 times.
  • Kids laugh roughly 400 times a day. The average adult laughs only 15 times per day.
  • In North America, over 3 million miles of dental floss are purchased annually.
  • Dinosaurs grew new teeth when one was lost or broken.
  • A fossilized T-Rex tooth can weigh up to a pound.
  • In 200 A.D., the Romans used a mixture of bones, eggshells, oyster shells, and honey to clean their teeth.
  • A snail’s mouth is no larger than the head of a pin, yet it can contain over 25,000 teeth.
  • A single can of soda contains 10-12 teaspoons of sugar. The recommended daily dietary intake of sugar is 4 teaspoons.
  • In 1994, a West Virginia prison inmate braided dental floss into a rope, scaled the wall, and escaped!
  • According to a recent survey by Time magazine, 59% of people would rather have a dental appointment than sit next to someone who is talking on a cell phone.
  • In the 1800s, blacksmiths and barbers also served as dentists.
  • Toothpicks are the object most often choked on by Americans.
  • The stone-faced farmer in artist Grant Wood’s famous “American Gothic” painting was actually the artist’s dentist.
  • Sports-related injuries account for approximately 5 million missing teeth per year.
  • Americans spend $100 billion a year on hair care products, and only $2 billion a year on dental care products.
  • Contrary to popular belief, George Washington’s famous dentures were not made from wood. His four pairs of custom choppers were crafted from gold, ivory, lead, and a mixture of human, donkey, and hippopotamus teeth.
  • The cotton candy making machine that made widely consumed cotton candy possible was co-invented by a dentist. Before it was cotton candy, the fluffy confection was called “fairy floss.”
  • The saying “cat got your tongue” originated 2500 years ago in ancient Assyria where conquered soldiers and criminals had their tongues cut out and fed to the king’s cats.
  • Cavities in teeth have been filled since the earliest of times with a variety of different materials, including gum, stone chips, and even turpentine resin.
  • The lifespan of a taste bud is about 10 days. The five known tastes detected by taste buds are: bitter, sour, salty, sweet, and umami. Umami was identified in 1908 by a Japanese research and the chemical responsible for it is monosodium glutamate.
  • 60% of people don’t known that a sore jaw, when combined with chest pain, can signal a heart attack – especially in women.
  • Every year, kids in North America spend close to half a billion dollars on chewing gum.
  • The average toothbrush contains about 2500 bristles grouped into about 40 tufts per toothbrush. The tufts are folded over a metal staple and forced into pre-cored holes in the head and fused into the head with heat. The handle is made of at least two materials, usually plastic and rubber. The grips used for the handle are: precision, power, spoon, oblique, and distal oblique.
  • 90% of system diseases have oral manifestations.
  • The most valuable tooth belonged to Sir Isaac Newton. In 1816, one of his teeth was sold in London for $3,633.00, or in today’s terms, $35,700.00. The tooth was set in a ring.
  • Americans spent $25 billion on candy in 2010. That is more than the gross national products of Lithuania, Costa Rica, and Mozambique combined.
  • Sugar Facts: Chemical manufacturers use sugar to grow penicillin. A teaspoon of sugar after a hot curry with extinguish the furnace in your mouth. A spoonful of sugar added to a vase will prolong the life of freshly cut flowers.
  • In the 1800s, people who had false teeth in England ate in their bedrooms before gatherings and events at the dinner table. This unique Victorian tradition protected them against the embarrassment of having their teeth ‘fall off’ while dining.
  • Dolphins use their teeth to grab only, not to chew, as dolphins’ jaws have no muscles.
  • Mosquitoes have 47 teeth.
  • In 1905, dental assistant Irene Newman was trained to clean teeth. She became the first dental hygienist.
  • Not too long ago, dentures were common wedding gifts in the British Isles. At that time, many people expected to lose all their teeth and had their teeth extracted at an early age.
  • In colonial days, debtors were shipped from Europe to America to work as servants. Instead of signing a contract, they sealed their agreement by leaving their dental imprint in wax.

Smiles by Design

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