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What We Can Learn From the Romans

  • January 29, 2015

There is a very famous belief that we must study history so that it doesn’t repeat itself. We often think of world tragedies and holocausts that could have been prevented if we had just been paying attention. We also use the past to learn more about how we live today. Often we find that we are doing much better than our ancestors, but there are many instances where that isn’t the case. While studying ancient Roman skulls, scientists made an alarming discovery regarding gum disease.

Romans Didn’t Know Everything About Oral Health, But…
We know a lot about Roman civilization and how they lived. They invented many things that we still use today, but when looking at their ancient skulls, we expected to see very poor oral health. After all, they didn’t see dentists like we do today. Scientists discovered lots of decay and abscesses, but the rate of gum disease was much lower than what we see today. Could they have known something that we don’t know?

How We Can Cut Back on Gum Disease
The Romans were clever, but they didn’t have a secret trick for preventing gum disease. They simply weren’t exposed to the same vices as we are: tobacco and unhealthy food. Research shows that as our society has embraced tobacco and unhealthy foods (think diabetes), the rates of gum disease have gone up. So, how do we cut our risk of gum disease? Cut back on the rates of tobacco use and diabetes in our society!

We can learn a lot about our own mistakes by looking at the past. We can see where we messed things up for ourselves! Let’s make a move to get back on track by living healthier lives and taking better care of our teeth. Contact us today to set up your next cleaning and exam. We would love to talk more about your risk for gum disease when we next see you.

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