This is interesting:
ONE OF the tired cliches about Europe is that its inhabitants all have mossy teeth, and have limited enthusiasm for matters of personal hygiene. This is a deporable generalisation, and not a serious subject for discussion. That said... crikey there is a jaw-dropping piece in today's Le Figaro, tucked away in the health pages (alas, not seemingly available on the internet).
. . .
57% of French children under five have never brushed their teeth
Yikes! Via Megan McArdle at the Atlantic.
Looks like a job for Prof. Colin Jones.
I have followed up my article on 'Tooth-pulling in Eighteenth-Century Paris', Past and Present, 2001, with interdisciplinary research which will lead on to other publication and a book on the cultural history of the smile.
God I love the Internet. Found the info on Prof. Jones while searching for appropriate image.