Naked Science Forum

Life Sciences => Plant Sciences, Zoology & Evolution => Topic started by: chris on 21/02/2019 09:26:54

Title: Do animals get tooth decay?
Post by: chris on 21/02/2019 09:26:54
We were discussing dental decay on the Naked Scientists Podcast recently; off the back of that, someone came back with an interesting question regarding animals with a high-sugar diet through eating foodstuffs like fruit.

Do these e.g. monkeys get rampant dental decay and tooth caries owing to the sugar and fruit acids that they relentlessly stuff into their mouths?
Title: Re: Do animals get tooth decay?
Post by: alancalverd on 21/02/2019 09:41:43
There was a hypothesis around in my younger days that raw sugar cane contains some material that offsets the decay process or even kills oral bacteria, to the extent that sugar plantation workers (who chew raw cane as a snack) had much less dental caries than the customers of the refined product. I wonder if this was myth or fact?
Title: Re: Do animals get tooth decay?
Post by: RD on 21/02/2019 12:34:27
... sugar plantation workers (who chew raw cane as a snack) had much less dental caries than the customers of the refined product.
I wonder if this was myth or fact?

The customers who bought sugar lived twice as long as slaves who harvested it. (http://www.digitalhistory.uh.edu/disp_textbook.cfm?smtID=2&psid=3040),
 so more time for customer's teeth to decay.