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A System Of Dental Surgery – Sir John Tomes

Sir John Tomes was a prominent dentist in the 19th century. He had a practice in London and was influential in establishing the LDS and the Dentists Act of 1879.

His significant work A System of Dental Surgery was published in 1897. It was mostly dedicated to the physiology of the teeth and dental treatments but several orthodontic treatments are described.

Tomes mentions extraction and describes several appliances, including plates attached to the teeth with wires and an ivory retention appliance with wooden pegs which is described in the adjoining extract (p161).

As an alternative to appliances (which Tomes notes requires using a plate for a considerable period of time and can cause discomfort to the patient) Tomes suggests manually turning the tooth by ‘seizing the tooth in a pair of forceps and forcibly twisting it round’ (p162).