The Truth About Washington’s Dentures

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Did you know that in 1976, more than 150 years after his death, George Washington was promoted to Six Star General in the U.S. military? This promotion was created solely for Washington, meaning no U.S. military officer can ever outrank him. Read on to learn a tiny bit more about the fact and fiction behind Washington’s famous false teeth.

George Washington might be the most famous denture-wearer to Americans, but many of the things we’ve heard aren’t quite right. Though John Adams claimed Washington lost his pearly whites due to his love of nuts and his penchant to crack them open with his pearly whites, historians think that it was mercury oxide, a common medicine at the time, that probably led to Washington’s tooth loss problem.

Contrary to common belief, none of Washington’s chompers were developed of wood: Washington’s four sets of false teeth were fashioned from substances including hippo ivory, elephant ivory, and real human teeth. Regrettably, Washington’s dental problems left him in near-constant agony. Today, dentures are made from resins that make sure durability and real-life resemblance; please ask us about false teeth on your next appointment if you or a loved one are missing several chompers.

Schedule your checkup by calling 303-296-1402, or come into our Denver, Colorado, location to talk to Dr. Thomas Ouellette and the Thomas E. Ouellette, DDS, PC team directly.