Grateful American® Foundation

Can you name the breakthrough in dental history that happened today?

August 15th

2699219172_small_1August 15, 1848 — Syracuse, NY dentist Waldo Hanchett invented the first dental chair today by attaching a neck extension to a four-legged chair.

The dentist’s drill didn’t come along for another 30 years, however, when on January 26, 1875, George Green patented the first electric dental drill.

There is historical evidence that the ancient Chinese used acupuncture around 2700 BC to treat the pain associated with tooth decay. But the first local anesthetic used in dentistry was Cocaine, which was introduced in 1884, by Carl Koller.

Words of Wisdom

The practice of medicine includes dentistry and dentistry is the practice of a special branch of medicine, as is ophthalmology. It may be going too far to say that all dentists should be doctors of medicine, but certainly all dentists should know much about the practice of medicine as a whole; and, conversely, all physicians should know more about dentistry, its importance and possibilities.

— Dr. Charles Mayo, 1928 presentation to the American Dental Association

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