A Historical Perspective: The Drill

The high speed drills you see today at dental offices first appeared in the late 1950s, but the technology behind them goes back to the late 18th century! The very first foot-powered dental engine was made in 1790 using components reportedly borrowed from a spinning wheel. Since then, it has maintained a crucial spot in dentist’s kits throughout the world and has driven the evolution of restoration techniques. 

Though it has secured a spot as a dental staple for years, we are starting to see different technologies come to surface. Some dentists are branching out and looking towards lasers as an additional tool that will only augment the capabilities of the high speed drill. The dental field is always changing, some aspects faster than others. By putting efforts into research and developing better tools, the field of dentistry can only continue to improve. 

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For more information, check out this article on dental inventions from JADA, the Journal of the American Dental Association: