There are many legends when it comes to the world of dentistry. Perhaps the most famous story we hear is the one about our first president's "wooden teeth". But, were George Washington's teeth actually wooden?
This is a trick question of sorts. The best educated answer we have is that it is likely George Washington probably had artificial gums that were wooden. This was very common at that time as they were a sturdy anchor for replacement teeth. However, the replacement teeth that George Washington had were more than likely real teeth. Yes, that's right, George Washington's fake teeth were more than likely real teeth from people who died - more than likely soldiers.
Though the most famous story of dentistry amongst presidents, George Washington is not the only president who had some tales about dental work. There are stories of Honest Abe and his fear of the dentist. It is believed that Abe Lincoln once chose to extract his own tooth instead of visiting the dentist. This was, predictably, a bad decision for President Lincoln. While removing his tooth he also removed part of his jaw bone thus ending his dental career.
The final story of dentistry and the presidency comes from John Adams. It is known that President John Adams spoke with a bit of a lisp, but why? This was due to John Adam's ignoring his dental health and losing all of his teeth!
These are some of Dr. Lechner's favorite stories about the teeth of our commanders in chief.