Part 2: Week 5 Blog

When conducting my research process, I first began by writing down my topic idea of interest on the evolution of dental technology. Next, I broke down my topic phrase in a way that allowed me to focus on only the root words of my topic sentence: “evolution,” “dental,” and “technology,” by underlining and highlighting them. Underneath each of the underlined words, I then began writing the first words or phrases that came to mind when I thought about the highlighted words. After that, I began drawing arrows to show the connection between two things listed in each category. By utilizing my brainstorming sheet, I was able to utilize keywords that aided me in searching for my sources, as well as formulate questions for my research.

Above is a picture of the web diagram that I used to help me when researching

“How did technology influence dentistry throughout history?”, “who is the founder of dentistry?”, and “how did dentistry all begin?” are just some of the questions that I formulated when beginning my research process. I also wrote down a few phrases that I can enter into the search engine when searching for sources. Phrases such as: technology in dentistry, changes in dental tools, and the history of dental tools, are all examples of a few phrases that I used when generating articles from the George Mason University online library database.

The first article I found was a secondary source titled Technology in Dentistry Through the Ages, by Dr. Andrew I. Spielman, that walks the audience through the significant history of dentistry, dating all the way back to approximately 1163 the period “of the separation of physicians from surgeons, a division that lasted for approximately 800 years” (Dr. Spielman). Dr. Spielman is an extremely reliable author because he has his PhD in biochemistry/oral biology, a MS in biochemistry/oral biology, a certificate in oral surgery, and his DMD from Dentistry, University of Medicine and Pharmacy, and his writing is based on decades of research in his career field.

Another article, titled Dental Technology Over 150 Years: Evolution and Revolution, by Paul Feuerstein is another secondary source, and it’s useful in understanding the significant difference between the dental services and technology provided 150 years ago versus today since it outlines the development of different dental technologies like the toothbrush and how “the first natural brushes were invented in ancient China using the bristles from the necks of pigs,” (Feuerstein). Dr. Feuerstein is a reliable author because he graduated from University of Medicine and Dentistry in New Jersey and earned his DMD and he runs his own practice, so his writing consists of information that he researches and experiences in his career.

On a blog, posted by Rachel Jackson, I was able to find an image that piqued my interest. The image source that I selected can also be considered a primary source, since it is a picture of a page from the book “Le Chirurgien Dentiste,” by Pierre Fauchard. This image is a popular one on Google images.

The primary source Dentistry Goes Digital by Suzanne Sataline is useful in comprehending the depths of technological evolution in dentistry because it mentions how “three-dimensional imaging also improves diagnosis and treatment in complex cases, eliminating guesswork by dentists and lessening the chance that something will need to be redone,” (Sataline, p.2). Because of her experience in journalism and writing for The Wall Street Journal, Suzanne Sataline is considered to be a reliable author because she is prone to having the latest information on many different topics and reporting them to the public in her journals.

The second primary source, a newspaper advertisement source titled Dr. H.S. Turner, published by Hartford Daily Courant, does an excellent job at portraying a milestone in the evolution of dental technology since it mentions the new discovery in 1874 was “the use of Nitrous Oxide Gas in dentistry, [and how it] extracts Teeth absolutely without pain,” (Hartford Daily Courant). Hartford Daily Courant is a reliable author because it is known to be the largest and the oldest newspaper publication source in Connecticut, allowing for it to have a wide collection of newspapers from different decades.

The primary source Leonard Koecker, Surgeon Dentist, No. 33, North Eighth Street, Philadelphia, published by Poulson’s American Daily Advertiser is useful because it signifies the time period of the discovery of oral diseases since it states that “filling decayed teeth and in plugging hollow teeth with… or gold, both operations not less recommendable, as they tend not only to obvi… the pain and disagreeable… attending decayed teeth, but render them … for their usual and ordinary services generally during life,” (Poulson’s American Daily Advertiser). Poulson’s American Daily Advertiser is a reliable publication source that was founded in 1771, and became the first successful newspaper publication in the U.S., so their writing has been around for a while and it is a well known source.

The Treatise on Dentistry, by B.T. Longbothom is useful in understanding early discoveries realting to dental research because this document states that its purpose is “to point out an art ufeful [useful] to fociety [society],” (Longothom p.5). Dr. Longbotom is a reliable source, as he was a practicing dental surgeon thus, his work on the Treatise on Dentistry is solely revolved around his passion and career.

The final primary source that I came across was a newspaper entry titled A New Dental Twilight Sleep; You Can Laugh as Drill Burrs, published by Richmond Times-Dispatch, and it is significant because it highlights an important period of time when anesthetics were administered by the patients and it was stated that “in one hand is a small bulb, which he squeezes whenever he begins to sense pain,” (Richmond Times-Dispatch). Richmond Times-Dispatch is a reliable source because it is known to be the primary daily newspaper publication in Richmond, Virginia and it was founded in 1850 so it has been around for a very long time.

After reading these articles, I want to approach my topic with a research question: How do dental services and tools differ from modern day patient care?

I found it more difficult to find primary sources than secondary sources. I didn’t have to use another portal to find my secondary sources, I just used Google to search for articles that piqued my interest. On the other hand, when searching for primary sources, I had to log on to the Mason online library database and search from there. The Mason online library database helps generate reliable sources that students could choose from.

I know a lot more about my topic than I did before. For example I now know who the father of dentistry is and how the practice of dentistry came about, which I never knew before conducting this research. In addition, I also learned that barbers were considered to be surgeons for minor procedures at one point in time in history, which is also something I never knew before conducting this research.

I believe that as I continue to work, more questions will arise from new information and this will lead to new ideas being incorporated to my final project.

Works Cited:

Feuerstein, Paul. “Dental Technology Over 150 Years: Evolution and Revolution.” Dentistry. MDS,

Hartford Daily Courant. “Dr. H.S. Turner.” Nitrous Oxide Gas, 1874. Readex,

Jackson, Rachel. “‘The Surgeon Dentist’ by Pierre Fauchard.” Dentistry, 2020. Medink,

Longbothom, B.T.. “Treatise on Dentistry.” Dentistry, 1802, pp. 1-70. Readex,

Poulson’s American Daily Advetiser. “Leonard Koecker, Surgeon Dentist, No. 33, North Eighth Street, Philadelphia.” Dentistry, 1813. Readex,

Richmond Times-Dispatch. “A New Dental Twilight Sleep; You Can Laugh as Drill Burrs.” Nitrous Oxide, 1939. Readex,

Sataline, Suzanne. “Dentistry Goes Digital.” Digital Dentistry, 2016, pp. 1-6. EBSCOhost,

Spielman, Andrew. “Technology in Dentistry, Through the Ages.” Dentistry. NYU Dentistry,

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