We celebrate on February 9.
Who is the patron saint of dentists?

International Dentist’s Day: February 9 was not chosen as a date by chance. The feast is celebrated on the day of honor by the Catholic Church of the Christian martyr St. Apollonia of Alexandria (St. Apollonia) or St. Antipas. She is associated with suffering and pain and standing up for the position.

She was the daughter of a public figure. St. Apollonia believed in Christianity and instead of following polytheism – bowing down to the divine emperor, she believed in Christ and did not set a “good example” to her fellow citizens. According to legends, she was subjected to terrible torture by pagans, but nevertheless. Despite everything, she did not give up Christianity. The holy woman endured all the torments. On February 9, 249, however, she was threatened with execution on a fire that had already been lit. But she does not bend under the demands of the tormentors. She jumps into the fire herself and burns.

Because of this feat, a legend was born that just saying her name “Apollonia” was enough to make any toothache go away. 51 years later, or more precisely, on February 9, 300. Apollonia was canonized as a saint.

The cult of worshiping the blessed Apollonia quickly spread throughout Europe, and the image of a young beautiful girl with tongs in her hand is in almost every church. In the 18th century, Apollonius, who until then was only the patron saint of people suffering from a toothache, became the patron saint of people who treat toothaches, namely dentists.

When did the toothache start?

It would be correct to say that toothache has probably existed since man existed. The first dental tools are wooden twigs used to remove plaque, which was found during excavations in ancient Etruria and Egypt.

The first specially made gold sticks were found in Sumer and date back to 3000 BC. But the first records of dental treatment are from an ancient Egyptian treatise written around 1550 BC. The treatise contains more than 900 potions with recipes for the treatment of various ailments. Among them are eleven recipes used to treat teeth and gums.

The first evidence of dentistry as such is in the early Middle Ages. The Greek Paul Eginsky (605-690) suggested removing calculus using a chisel and other tools. He also writes about the need for oral hygiene, especially after eating, stressing that different foods stick to the teeth and thus plaque builds up.

In the 11th century, the surgeon of Córdoba Abul-Qasim depicted dental instruments in his book, and for cleaning, he recommended sea foam, and salt, in the form of powder, burnt snail shells, etc.

Fauchard performs complex dental surgical procedures and treats caries. His book “The Dental Surgeon” from 1782 is not accidentally considered the first scientific treatise on dentistry. It is an interesting fact that at the beginning of his career as a dentist, Pierre Fauchard had primitive tools at his disposal, which encouraged him to be innovative and use new methods and tools – and with success. He is considered an innovator, dedicated to his profession, and contributed a lot to its modern form.

Why is this feast important?

Today, dentistry is extremely advanced, and treating diseased teeth is a fact. Technologies are advancing significantly, and this does not only concern the IT industry, but also medicine and dentistry. Not only can the work processes in the dental practice run much more easily and smoothly, but information between specialists can be exchanged quickly, the materials can be of higher quality, but also the dental devices themselves are already at a high level.

The treatment of severely diseased teeth is real, the color of the implant can match 99.9% with that of natural teeth, and the cleaning of root canals has become trivial.

Those who take care of the health of our teeth and gums are the ones who take care of our whole health because health starts with oral hygiene. And in the end, prevention is the best treatment! That’s why we at TEACS team try to help dentists and dental technicians by making their work easier and encouraging patients not to miss routine examinations in the dental practice.

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