Excavations are currently underway to make room for the Metro Tunnel underneath Melbourne CBD. The excavation is being conducted with a team of archaeologists and has uncovered more than 500,000 artefacts so far, including more than 1,000 human teeth.
Apparently, the teeth which were found on the corner of Flinders and Swanston Street were disposed of down the sink by a dentist previously on the site. It’s estimated some of the teeth could date back to the late 19th century, and they clearly show that poor dental health was rife at that time. Many of the teeth have large holes and lots of decay, showing their owners must have been in significant pain for some time before the offending teeth were removed.
It’s a good reminder as to how far modern dentistry has thankfully progressed because nowadays we know that dental disease, including tooth decay, is preventable, and we have some excellent ways to treat any cavities. Before, a cavity would almost certainly have led to eventual infection, pain and probably an unpleasant extraction. Now, regular dental check-ups quickly detect any signs of tooth decay, hopefully treating the problem before you feel any discomfort. Even when tooth removal is necessary, we can ensure the process is as comfortable and as pain-free as possible.