Many of us were raised being told that George Washington had wooden dentures. Sorry, but our first president, who began to lose his teeth in his early twenties, actually had a number of different denture sets made out of varying combinations of rare hippopotamus ivory, human teeth, and metal fasteners.

Washington was only one of many notable figures with oral health issues. Some of our most glamorous Hollywood icons had problems that, untreated, would have prevented their status and stature.

Clark Gable, beloved star of Gone with the Wind and Oscar-winning leading man, was cursed with dental problems stemming from a series of illnesses that causes him to lose his teeth (both naturally and by extraction) by the time he was only 32 years old. His oral problems caused extreme bad breath and many of his leading ladies, including Vivian Leigh as Scarlett O’Hara, complained about his halitosis to producers and directors. Apparently, he either couldn’t help his condition or he really “didn’t give a damn”.

When Joan Crawford was not acting or living a real-life role as a tormented “Mommie Dearest”, she suffered from significant dental problems, some of which were caused by Hollywood’s perception of beauty!  Some of her back teeth were extracted to accentuate her cheekbones. A space developed between her front teeth and had to be filled with dental cement, then filed to be fitted with caps. This in turn caused an irreversible swelling of her upper lip. Her dental problems persisted and she required round the clock care when she was in her 60’s due to problems associated with major dental surgery.

Similar surgery created the well-known cheekbones of glorious German vamp Marlene Dietrich. While there aren’t stories of resultant disease, the removal of her rear teeth was instrumental in her well-known, sultry facial features.

Today, while surgeries are not routinely performed to alter celebrities’ oral profiles, it is common for Hollywood stars and wannabe stars to have cosmetic enhancements, straightening and whitening procedures to give them that “Hollywood gleaming smile”. Little do some of them know what their predecessors endured before today’s technology to give them that certain look. Needless to say, no matter what the procedure, no matter what the treatment, good oral hygiene is critical to maintain those pearly whites. So brushing, flossing and using the TUNG Brush and Gel regularly are important to each and every one of us, star on stage or star at home.

Are YOU ready for your closeup?