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9,000-Year-Old Dental Drill Is Found
Yahoo (AP) ^ | Wed Apr 5, 1:05 PM ET | SETH BORENSTEIN

Posted on 04/05/2006 1:33:23 PM PDT by The_Victor

WASHINGTON - Proving prehistoric man's ingenuity and ability to withstand and inflict excruciating pain, researchers have found that dental drilling dates back 9,000 years.

Primitive dentists drilled nearly perfect holes into live but undoubtedly unhappy patients between 5500 B.C. and 7000 B.C., an article in Thursday's journal Nature reports. Researchers carbon-dated at least nine skulls with 11 drill holes found in a Pakistan graveyard.

That means dentistry is at least 4,000 years older than first thought — and far older than the useful invention of anesthesia.

This was no mere tooth tinkering. The drilled teeth found in the graveyard were hard-to-reach molars. And in at least one instance, the ancient dentist managed to drill a hole in the inside back end of a tooth, boring out toward the front of the mouth.

The holes went as deep as one-seventh of an inch (3.5 millimeters).

"The holes were so perfect, so nice," said study co-author David Frayer, an anthropology professor at the University of Kansas. "I showed the pictures to my dentist and he thought they were amazing holes."

How it was done is painful just to think about. Researchers figured that a small bow was used to drive the flint drill tips into patients' teeth. Flint drill heads were found on site. So study lead author Roberto Macchiarelli, an anthropology professor at the University of Poitiers, France, and colleagues simulated the technique and drilled through human (but no longer attached) teeth in less than a minute.

"Definitely it had to be painful for the patient," Macchiarelli said.

Researchers were impressed by how advanced the society was in Pakistan's Baluchistan province. The drilling occurred on ordinary men and women.

The dentistry, probably evolved from intricate ornamental bead drilling that was also done by the society there, went on for about 1,500 years until about 5500 B.C., Macchiarelli said. After that, there were no signs of drilling.

Macchiarelli and Frayer said the drilling was likely done to reduce the pain of cavities.

Macchiarelli pointed to one unfortunate patient who had a tooth drilled twice. Another patient had three teeth drilled. Four drilled teeth showed signs of cavities. No sign of fillings were found, but there could have been an asphalt-like substance inside, he said.

Dr. Richard Glenner, a Chicago dentist and author of dental history books, wouldn't bite on the idea that this was good dentistry. The drilling could have been decorative or to release "evil spirits" more than fighting tooth decay, he said, adding, "Why did they do it? No one will ever know."

Macchiarelli said the hard-to-see locations of the drilled teeth in jaws seem to rule out drilling for decorative purposes. Frayer said the prehistoric drillers' skill is something modern-day patients can use to lord over their dentists.

"This may be something to tell your dentist: If these people 9,000 years ago could make a hole this perfect in less than a minute," Frayer said, "what are they doing?"


TOPICS: Miscellaneous; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: aaaaack; dentists; ggg; godsgravesglyphs; india; indusvalley
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Oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooowwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww!
1 posted on 04/05/2006 1:33:26 PM PDT by The_Victor
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To: SunkenCiv; Gengis Khan


2 posted on 04/05/2006 1:34:30 PM PDT by indcons (The MSM - Mainstream Slime Merchants)
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To: The_Victor

Just one question: is it safe?


3 posted on 04/05/2006 1:34:31 PM PDT by Gordongekko909 (I know. Let's cut his WHOLE BODY off.)
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To: The_Victor

How do they know how old it is?


4 posted on 04/05/2006 1:35:20 PM PDT by sangoo
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To: The_Victor
relax, opium was known much longer-just because they are ancient cultures don't assume they were stupid.
5 posted on 04/05/2006 1:36:36 PM PDT by ConsentofGoverned (if a sucker is born every minute, what are the voters?)
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To: The_Victor

6 posted on 04/05/2006 1:37:05 PM PDT by Mad_Tom_Rackham (A Liberal: One who demands half of your pie, because he didn't bake one.)
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To: sangoo
How do they know how old it is?

From the article: "Researchers carbon-dated at least nine skulls with 11 drill holes found in a Pakistan graveyard."

7 posted on 04/05/2006 1:37:39 PM PDT by The_Victor (If all I want is a warm feeling, I should just wet my pants.)
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To: The_Victor

La Brea woman had a bad dental abcess, which may have gotten her thrown into the LA tarpits some 9,000 years ago.


8 posted on 04/05/2006 1:37:53 PM PDT by onedoug
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To: The_Victor
I'm guessing that the invention of the drill only briefly preceded the development of some sort of anesthesia.
9 posted on 04/05/2006 1:37:58 PM PDT by linear (America suffers neither from conservatism nor liberalism, but from a failure of her institutions.)
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To: sangoo
How do they know how old it is?

They found a dentist's bill, dated 7000 B.C.

10 posted on 04/05/2006 1:38:33 PM PDT by Izzy Dunne (Hello, I'm a TAGLINE virus. Please help me spread by copying me into YOUR tag line.)
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To: The_Victor

I wonder if they found a 9000 year old Highlights magazine in the waiting cave.


11 posted on 04/05/2006 1:38:35 PM PDT by Gator101
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To: sangoo
How do they know how old it is?

Researchers carbon-dated at least nine skulls with 11 drill holes found in a Pakistan graveyard.

For those of you who accept carbon dating. For those who don't, relax, it's less than 6,000 years old. Go back to sleep.

12 posted on 04/05/2006 1:39:25 PM PDT by SlowBoat407 (The best stuff happens just before the thread snaps.)
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To: sangoo

The magazines found in the vicinity were 9,010 years old.


13 posted on 04/05/2006 1:39:46 PM PDT by weegee ("CBS NEWS? Is that show still on?" - freedomson)
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To: Gordongekko909
Just one question: is it safe?

Damn, Now all I can hear in my head is that drill. Damn Nazi dentists. :)
14 posted on 04/05/2006 1:40:15 PM PDT by BritExPatInFla
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To: Gator101
I wonder if they found a 9000 year old Highlights magazine in the waiting cave.

The Highlights in today's waiting rooms are about that age.

15 posted on 04/05/2006 1:40:41 PM PDT by The_Victor (If all I want is a warm feeling, I should just wet my pants.)
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To: weegee
The magazines found in the vicinity were 9,010 years old.

Best line of the day!!!

16 posted on 04/05/2006 1:40:47 PM PDT by SlowBoat407 (The best stuff happens just before the thread snaps.)
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To: The_Victor

Thanks!!

My dentist said he lost one. I will let him know they may have found it.


17 posted on 04/05/2006 1:41:15 PM PDT by Michael.SF. (Cynthia McKinney, helping Democrats turn Republican since 9/11)
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To: The_Victor

What makes them think there was no anesthesia?

Ever heard of opium.


18 posted on 04/05/2006 1:41:38 PM PDT by TASMANIANRED (The Internet is the samizdat of liberty..)
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To: SunkenCiv

Open wide and say 'bump'?


19 posted on 04/05/2006 1:41:54 PM PDT by Hegemony Cricket (Rage is the fuel that powers the islamic machine)
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To: The_Victor

And I bet Dr. Urk, DDS, is still waiting for his claim to be processed by the dental insurance company.


20 posted on 04/05/2006 1:41:56 PM PDT by Kenny Bunkport
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To: The_Victor

21 posted on 04/05/2006 1:42:02 PM PDT by hflynn ( Soros wouldn't make any sense even if he spelled his name backwards)
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To: linear
I'm guessing that the invention of the drill only briefly preceded the development of some sort of anesthesia.

Now we know why alcohol was invented.

22 posted on 04/05/2006 1:43:06 PM PDT by CzarNicky (The problem with bad ideas is that they seemed like good ideas at the time.)
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To: theDentist

You missing any tools?


23 posted on 04/05/2006 1:43:42 PM PDT by The_Victor (If all I want is a warm feeling, I should just wet my pants.)
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To: The_Victor

24 posted on 04/05/2006 1:44:14 PM PDT by Calpernia (Breederville.com)
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To: The_Victor

Probably closely related to the drill that my dentist "Dr. Bob" uses to this very day.


25 posted on 04/05/2006 1:44:19 PM PDT by newcthem (Use Allah urinal cakes!)
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To: linear
I'm guessing that the invention of the drill only briefly preceded the development of some sort of anesthesia.

A heavy stick swung against the head would worked well as a primative narcotic.
26 posted on 04/05/2006 1:44:26 PM PDT by YummiBox
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To: The_Victor
Even chimps and great apes know and use natural painkillers readily availible in the environment.

Doc: "This won't hurt a bit"

27 posted on 04/05/2006 1:44:59 PM PDT by xcamel (Press to Test, Release to Detonate)
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To: Gator101

"Let Oog look in mouth. Mmm, you have cavity. You have insurance? Ooh, this not be cheap. Here, take some floss made from mastodon hair. Use every day. Come back at next half moon for operation. Bring much shiny yellow stone."


28 posted on 04/05/2006 1:45:15 PM PDT by Gordongekko909 (I know. Let's cut his WHOLE BODY off.)
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To: The_Victor

But did they have dental insurance? Government provided health care?

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1609552/posts


29 posted on 04/05/2006 1:48:10 PM PDT by colorcountry (You don't have a soul. You are a Soul. You have a body.....CS Lewis)
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To: sangoo
How do they know how old it is?

From the magazines burried with the drill.

30 posted on 04/05/2006 1:49:48 PM PDT by pikachu (Home come non of my rich Nigerian relatives that are dying can not make a @%#ing will??)
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To: sangoo
How do they know how old it is?

Oh, that's easy. They found magazines that were 9,010 years old with it.

31 posted on 04/05/2006 1:53:59 PM PDT by Tennessee_Bob ("Those who "abjure" violence can only do so because others are committing violence on their behalf.")
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To: Gordongekko909

32 posted on 04/05/2006 1:54:59 PM PDT by seawolf101
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To: Gordongekko909

LOL


33 posted on 04/05/2006 1:55:19 PM PDT by Frank_2001
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To: The_Victor
I have not used Novocaine for simple cavities in over 20 years.

Pain can be tolerated. It's not half as bad as you think it is.

You should see the looks on the Staffs faces when I pass on the needle and just tell them to get to work.

I sometimes joke that I will just smack them every time they hurt me.

Just joking I say.

Maybe.

I does tend to focus their minds however.

Cheers,

knewshound

Brew Your Own
34 posted on 04/05/2006 1:55:39 PM PDT by knews_hound (When Blogs are Outlawed, only Outlaws will have Blogs.)
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To: The_Victor

That's nothing, these drills are still being used today throughout the muslim world.


35 posted on 04/05/2006 1:56:49 PM PDT by freedomson (Tagline comment removed by moderator)
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To: pikachu; Tennessee_Bob; weegee; Gator101
How do they know how old it is?

From the magazines burried with the drill.

Anyone want to start a pool for the number of times this joke gets posted?

36 posted on 04/05/2006 1:56:51 PM PDT by The_Victor (If all I want is a warm feeling, I should just wet my pants.)
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To: The_Victor

How did these people ever get dental help with Health Care costs as high as they are and George Bush never paying for it with "government funds"?


37 posted on 04/05/2006 1:57:53 PM PDT by xrp (Fox News Channel: MISSING WHITE GIRL NETWORK)
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To: The_Victor

38 posted on 04/05/2006 1:58:51 PM PDT by Larry Lucido
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To: The_Victor

The next time you go to the dentist, take a look at the tools. Most of them look like they were invented in the Middle Ages as instruments of torture, and they have not changed much since.


39 posted on 04/05/2006 2:00:10 PM PDT by The Sons of Liberty (Former SAC Trained Killer)
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To: The_Victor

Could they have been drilled after they were dead?


40 posted on 04/05/2006 2:00:53 PM PDT by blam
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To: Tennessee_Bob; Cagey; MotleyGirl70

Do I detect a bit of rabid antidentism here? :-)


41 posted on 04/05/2006 2:01:18 PM PDT by Larry Lucido
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To: sangoo

"How do they know how old it is?"

The 10,000 year old magazines that were with it.


42 posted on 04/05/2006 2:02:00 PM PDT by MeanWestTexan (Many at FR would respond to Christ "Darn right, I'll cast the first stone!")
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To: The_Victor
Proving prehistoric man's ingenuity and ability to withstand and inflict excruciating pain

Should read: "Proving dentists' ability to inflict excruciating pain...". The real "world's oldest profession".
43 posted on 04/05/2006 2:03:12 PM PDT by AnotherUnixGeek
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To: YummiBox

Definitely not addictive.


44 posted on 04/05/2006 2:03:52 PM PDT by weegee ("CBS NEWS? Is that show still on?" - freedomson)
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To: Larry Lucido
Do I detect a bit of rabid antidentism here? :-)

Yeah - I'm an occupationist, and proud of it!

45 posted on 04/05/2006 2:04:35 PM PDT by Tennessee_Bob ("Those who "abjure" violence can only do so because others are committing violence on their behalf.")
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To: blam

"could have" but I suspect it is like the brain surgery that was performed in ancient times. They see bone growth over the surgical area.

Not sure what happens with teeth.


46 posted on 04/05/2006 2:05:38 PM PDT by weegee ("CBS NEWS? Is that show still on?" - freedomson)
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To: aruanan; RadioAstronomer; longshadow; wimpycat; NittanyLion

Alright, any smart a$$ comments from the peanut gallery???


47 posted on 04/05/2006 2:07:31 PM PDT by TomB ("The terrorist wraps himself in the world's grievances to cloak his true motives." - S. Rushdie)
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To: SlowBoat407

ok


48 posted on 04/05/2006 2:14:37 PM PDT by italianquaker (Democrats and media can't win elections at least they can win their phony polls.)
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To: TASMANIANRED

"Ever heard of opium"

I was going to say the same thing. And now thanks to Afghanistan (very near Pakistan) there is lots more of it.


49 posted on 04/05/2006 2:17:35 PM PDT by gleeaikin
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To: ConsentofGoverned
relax, opium was known much longer-just because they are ancient cultures don't assume they were stupid.

Thank you. This just points out again that most people today think everything was created in their lifetime. There are other plants/drugs I'm sure these people could have got high on during this process also.

50 posted on 04/05/2006 2:25:25 PM PDT by TXBubba ( Democrats: If they don't abort you then they will tax you to death.)
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