10 Fun Dental Facts for Kids

If your kids think dental health and teeth are boring, here are some exciting dental facts that can grab their attention!

1. Even ancient populations understood the importance of oral hygiene.

In ancient times, people used various methods to maintain dental hygiene. They would chew tree bark or wooden sticks with frayed ends to clean their teeth, while ancient Egyptians brushed their teeth with a mixture of powdered eggshells, ox hooves, and water. Despite the simplicity of these methods compared to modern practices, they understood the importance of oral hygiene for having strong and healthy teeth.

2. The modern toothbrush was not developed until the 1700s.

In England, a man named William Addis made a significant breakthrough by combining boar bristles and a bone handle to make the first toothbrush that could be produced on a large scale. Later, in the 1930s, toothbrushes with nylon bristles and comfortable handles were introduced, which may appear outdated by today's standards but were incredibly groundbreaking back then! 

3. Not even the Tooth Fairy is immune to inflation.

Back in 1900, the Tooth Fairy used to give just twelve cents for a tooth. But things have changed! In 1998, the average increased to one dollar. By 2013, the going rate reached an average of $3.50. And in 2018, it wasn't unusual for kids to discover a $5 bill under their pillows! So, how much does the Tooth Fairy leave for you?

4. North Americans use around 3 million miles of dental floss every year.

Despite this, the percentage of North Americans who floss on a daily basis remains insufficient, with only 30% reporting regular flossing.

5. The average human produces 25,000 quarts of spit in a lifetime.

That amount of drool could fill two swimming pools. Eww!

6. Teeth can tell us a lot about the past.

Teeth are the toughest part of any mammal and therefore tend to fossilize more frequently. They vary in size, number, shape, and arrangement across different mammal species, providing valuable information for classifying organisms (taxonomy). Without teeth, understanding the fossil record would be significantly more challenging.

7. The United States has the most cavities per person out of all the countries in the world.

In certain countries, such as China, people consume very little sugar, resulting in entire cities being completely free of cavities.

8. 'Long in the tooth' is a phrase meaning 'old'.

This phrase has its roots in horses. As horses get older, their gums move back, creating an illusion of growing teeth. The longer the teeth appear, the more advanced in age the horse is

9. Snails have teeth. Lots of them.

Snails and slugs have a unique way of eating. They use a special tool called a radula, which is like a flexible band made up of thousands of tiny teeth. The radula helps them scrape and rasp food particles, while their jaw cuts off larger pieces like leaves for the radula to rasp.

10. According to Louisiana law, if you bite someone with your natural teeth, it's assault, but if you bite them with dentures, it's aggravated assault.

Simple assault occurs when you harm someone using your body, while aggravated assault involves using a dangerous weapon (even dentures can be considered dangerous if used for biting people).

If your kids are looking to learn more about teeth, we can definitely help with that! Contact our Vancouver dentists today to book an appointment.

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