Toothpicking and Periodontal Disease in a Neanderthal Specimen from Cova Foradà Site (Valencia, Spain)

Marina Lozano, Maria Eulàlia Subirà, José Aparicio, Carlos Lorenzo, Gala Gómez-Merino

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We present a Neanderthal maxilla (CF-1) from Cova Foradà site (Oliva, Valencia, Spain) with periodontal disease and evidence of attempts to alleviate pain with the use of a toothpick. Two interproximal grooves have been found on the distal surfaces of the upper left Pm3 and M1 of CF-1 maxilla. The location, morphology and size of the grooves coincide with other interproximal grooves found on the teeth of other fossil specimens. Heavy dental wear and periodontal disease would have caused the Cova Foradà Neanderthal specimen pain and discomfort, which the individual attempted to mitigate using some kind of dental probe. © 2013 Lozano et al.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere76852
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume8
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 16 Oct 2013

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