Dental History

Update in January 11, 2024

We do not have any information for Dentistry before the Islam took over Persia. However, in AVESTA, we have documents referring to dental diseases among Persians. Under Sasanians, significant advances were accomplished both in medicine and dentistry in old Iran. Physicians were trained at Gondesapur and it is highly believed that dentistry was a part of their education. A Persian trained doctor in Gondesapur later moves to Damascus and writes a book called KITAB-AL-ASIAN meaning book of teeth. Another Persian family exercising medicine and dentistry in Iran were BOKTISU family since the great Persian scientist always refers to these two sources in his writings. Also, another person is believed to have used gold inlay for the first time to fill teeth in Persia. A physician Ali Rabban wrote a medical compendium describing the growth of primary teeth as well as molars, gums and even methods on how to bleach teeth!

It was the great RAZI who made detailed writings about dental disease and medication for teeth. He believed that most diseases of the teeth originated from the nerves in the root component of the teeth. He made a toothache classification under hot or cold pain and always tried his medications before administrating them.

Apparently, Tarragon root with vinegar and opium, as well as camphor, were being used for hundreds of years in Persia to relieve pain both in medicine and dentistry. Physician Jorjani wrote extensively on the anatomy of the teeth and dental disease relating to them. He went into detail and described the eruption sequence of the teeth . his observation on PYORRHEA and receding gums and his medication remedy are highly documented. However, he believed that dental cavity is due to a worm is hidden inside the teeth.

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Later Borhan Nafis discussed in detail the anatomy and associated nerves of the teeth and how the dental disease is in progress. He mentioned bloodletting and cupping for a toothache. It is very difficult to date modern dentistry in Persia. Andrew Jukes and Jogn McNeil were the first brits and were possibly the first physicians practicing dentistry in Iran due to their job working for the British East India Company.

Two foreign Dentists arrived in Iran ( Polish & Austrian ) to treat patients and train Iranian Dentists in 1921.

Later in 1965 several universities and dental faculties were setups in Iran like Tehran University and Melli University .



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