A SALUTE TO TRADITIONAL CRAFTSMANSHIP
Dentistry is thought to be the oldest specialisation of medicine, with studies suggesting that the Neanderthals were using primitive dentistry tools as much as 130,000 years ago. Evidence of dental surgery in the form of teeth drilling has been found to originate as far back as 9,000 years ago, and the first filling, made from beeswax, 6,500 years ago.
As the field developed over time, amalgams, extractions and even dental bridges have been described in the literature. In the 19th century, dentistry was not a profession in its own right and general physicians, and even barbers, were responsible for tooth extractions! It wasn’t until 1859 that a formal qualification was available for dentistry, and not until 1921 that it was a requirement for registered dentists to have such a qualification in order to practice.