Farming & Orthodontics

by Alison

We can thank farming for the need for orthodontics, according to the article I read on Science Daily at

It seems about 12,000 years or so ago when our ancestors drifted away from being hunter gatherers to being farmers our jaws became smaller. However, our teeth stayed the same size.

farmer w oxen march 3Apparently our Mesolithic hunter gatherer ancestors had perfect dental occlusion. Their big teeth fit their big jaws and all was well. However, about ten thousand years or so ago farming allowed us to go from eating “hard, raw foods” to “soft cooked foods”. Seemingly this caused an evolution in our jaw size, but not in tooth size. Now we have the same big teeth, but smaller jaws causing tooth crowding and bite problems.

steve buscemi big teeth march 23 2015This makes me wonder why the jaw evolved but the teeth didn’t. Perhaps we are still evolving, and in another ten thousand years our teeth will be smaller, and we will no longer need orthodontists or night guards.

If your teeth are crowded or not biting properly we can help you with that. Give us a call 703-532-1712