A Brief History of Orthodontics

little girl history lessonOrthodontics is a branch of modern dentistry that specializes in the study, diagnosis, and treatment of irregular teeth and jaw alignment. Oftentimes, orthodontic treatment involves the use of braces to move crooked teeth into vertical, properly-aligned positions. Today, advanced orthodontic treatment may include the use of more discrete alternatives, like tooth-colored brackets and wires, or Invisalign clear aligners. While the term orthodontics is a relatively recent development, the concept of purposely moving teeth to improve a mouth’s function has been pondered and practiced since ancient history. Your Lake Worth orthodontist, Dr. Ciro Cabal, offers a brief glimpse at the history of orthodontics, and how it became a discipline all its own.

The Progression of Orthodontics

  • Thinking about straight teeth? You’re not alone. In fact, two of history’s greatest thinkers and philosophers, Hippocrates and Aristotle, provided discourses on ways to straighten teeth and fix other dental problems. They also ruminated on dental health’s importance to overall physical wellbeing.
  • According to archaeological finds, ancient Romans and Etruscans often bound crooked teeth with gold wire. Apparently, the concept of cosmetics had partly extended to dental work, though the gold was likely more functional than aesthetic.
  • Two books published in in the mid-18th century, Pierre Fauchard’s “The Surgeon Dentist” and Etienne Bourdet’s “The Dentist’s Art,” contained chapters dedicated to teeth alignment and appliances that can straighten them. Both men are often accredited as the fathers of modern orthodontics.
  • As the first dental specialty board, the American Board of Orthodontics was formed in 1929. As a side note, the stainless steel used for metal braces wasn’t generally accepted until the 1960s. In the 1970s, direct bonding of brackets to teeth revolutionized the idea of orthodontics, replacing previous models that wrapped around each tooth.

Seek the Expertise of Your Lake Worth Orthodontist

To learn about modern orthodontics and the many options we offer to help restore your smile’s beauty and function, call Lake Country Orthodontics today at (817) 236-7846 and schedule a consultation with Dr. Ciro Cabal. Located in the 76179 area, our Ft. Worth orthodontist’s office proudly welcomes families from Azle, Saginaw, Springtown, Weatherford, Haslet, Ft. Worth, and all surrounding communities.