Author Topic: Is the story about teeth removal true?  (Read 33691 times)

Offline Stanwix England

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Is the story about teeth removal true?
« on: Sunday 01 May 22 20:01 BST (UK) »
Hello, I was just wondering if any of our older members might know something about this.

Teeth have been on my mind lately as I'm due to have some dental work done. I remember hearing/reading that it used to be common for people to have all their teeth removed when they were a young adult - in order to avoid expensive and painful problems in the future. They would then wear dentures for the rest of their lives.

I've started to second guess if this is true, or just a made up story because a) you'd still have to pay to have all the teeth removed in the first place, so how was it saving money and b) you'd have to pay for dentures and presumably maintain them for the rest of your life - which would also be difficult and potentially expensive.

It also occurred to me that I had never heard of anybody in my family having that done - which obviously doesn't mean that the legend isn't true, just because it didn't happen in my family, but still.

So I was wondering if anyone on this forum remembers any of their family members having this done, or having heard of it being done.
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Offline nanny jan

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Re: Is the story about teeth removal true?
« Reply #1 on: Sunday 01 May 22 20:10 BST (UK) »
I was told that one of my aunts (b.1913) had this done for her 21st birthday!  :o

She died when I was very young so not able to confirm.
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Offline mckha489

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Re: Is the story about teeth removal true?
« Reply #2 on: Sunday 01 May 22 20:25 BST (UK) »
Similar period, I was told by a woman she was given the “gift”  by her father before she got married, to “save her new husband the future expense”.

I think it is true, and did happen a lot.

I have also heard stories of the job being done on/at the kitchen table!  But I don’t think that can be correct.

Offline Ashtone

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Re: Is the story about teeth removal true?
« Reply #3 on: Sunday 01 May 22 20:32 BST (UK) »
My middle-aged granny requested that all of her teeth be pulled before going abroad for several years. She was anxiety-prone, and worried that she wouldn't receive proper dental care in the other country. So she had dentures fitted before she left England. I do question her dentist - pulling healthy teeth.

I did confirm all of the above with my granny many years ago. She didn't think it was an odd thing to do. Then again, this was a woman who would immediately flush private letters down the loo after reading them only once. At the time, I thought she was a spy!  ;D


Offline Kiltpin

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Re: Is the story about teeth removal true?
« Reply #4 on: Sunday 01 May 22 21:38 BST (UK) »
The wife of a friend of mine had all her teeth removed and dentures fitted as a present when she was 18. She was living in the US at the time, and she was the last of all her friends to have it done. This was in the mid 60s. 

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Offline radstockjeff

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Re: Is the story about teeth removal true?
« Reply #5 on: Sunday 01 May 22 21:40 BST (UK) »
I can recall many years ago when working on a building site there was one labourer, tough as old boots.  I believe he had spent time in the coal mines, but who was mortally afraid of the dentist. So If he had a problem with a bad tooth he took rather extreme measures.
He would tie a piece of strong cord around the tooth (there were plenty of gaps from previous extractions) and the other end on to a 5lb or 10lb sledge hammer; hold the hammer between his knees and then let it drop suddenly, pulling the tooth out.
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Offline Stanwix England

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Re: Is the story about teeth removal true?
« Reply #6 on: Sunday 01 May 22 21:50 BST (UK) »
Thank you everyone for sharing your stories. I am now even more grateful to have an NHS dentist!
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Offline polly50

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Re: Is the story about teeth removal true?
« Reply #7 on: Sunday 01 May 22 22:56 BST (UK) »
My mother-in-law told me she had all her teeth removed when pregnant with her first child. This was in 1942/3.

She said it was because pregnant women often experienced dental problems. But I think her teeth were not in a very good condition anyway.



Offline Nic.

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Re: Is the story about teeth removal true?
« Reply #8 on: Sunday 01 May 22 23:04 BST (UK) »
I was a child in the 70’s.

I remember both my maternal grandparents had their teeth removed and wore dentures.  My Nan found hers uncomfortable and kept them in her handbag only putting them in for special occasions.  It’s my understanding they both had all their teeth out before their 50s.