These 8 Pieces Of Old Dentists’ Equipment Explain Why People Were So Afraid Of Them

Nobody loves going to the dentist. We may not all have serious phobias about our semi-annual visits, but most people would rather skip the trip altogether. There's just something unpleasant about a stranger rooting around in your mouth with metal tools.

Historically speaking, though, people had plenty of real reasons to be frightened by a trip the dentist. Just a glance at any of these pieces of antique dental equipment might just make you consider skipping your next appointment!

1. Gnathograph: This pointy metal head brace was actually used to take measurements for dentures and other types of mouth and head gear. Luckily, we have soft molds now!
2. Dental screw forceps: This old tool looks like it would be more at home in a woodworking shop than a dentist's office! To use it, the dentist would screw the clamp tightly around a tooth and then use the handle to yank it out. Hopefully anesthetics were good back then!
3. Jaw brace: This unpleasant piece of head gear was used to stabilize the jaw after it had been broken, dislocated, or operated on. It seems like it would be very difficult, and probably painful, to eat or sleep in this contraption!
4. Tooth extractor: This metal gadget for pulling teeth has a sliding prong that can be adjusted and screwed in place to grip the problem tooth snugly between two pieces of metal. Then the dentist would just pull on the handle to rip out the tooth. The fact that this one is all rusty makes it significantly scarier looking, too.