The Secret Lives of Dentists

The typical dentist leads a pretty normal lifestyle. Many dentists wake-up, go to work, come back home, eat dinner with their families, watch television, read, brush, floss and hit the sack once again. But more often than you might think, dentists lead pretty interesting lives. Here are a few notable dentists you might’ve heard of before but forgotten about.

Harry J. “Doc” Sagansky – Harry Sagansky grew up in Boston, MA in the early 20th century. He received a degree in dentistry from Tufts University in 1918 and opened a practice in a liquor store soon after. During Prohibition, however, he turned his attentions toward less reputable professions. He became involved in illegal gambling and invested in two shady Boston nightclubs. He opened a loan agency which had a suspected worth of $90 million and by the 1950s operated the largest illegal gambling organization in the history of Boston. At age 91 he became the oldest organized crime figure to head to prison after he refused to testify against other mafia members.

GReeeeN – GReeeeN is a Japanese vocal group composed of four dentists (Hide, Navi, 92 and Soh) who all graduated from the same dental university. They were signed to Universal Music Japan in 2007 and have already released a greatest hits album. They have five albums, one of which went triple platinum according to the Recording Industry Association of Japan. They won best new artist and new song at the 2008 Japan Gold Disc Awards and Best Album at the 2009 Japan Record Awards. The members of the group have never been publicly photographed, believing that any celebrity status would interfere with their dental practices. Instead, their logo image is a mouthful of teeth and the four Es from the name GReeeeN, which indicate the four members.

Edgar R.R. “Painless” Parker – Edgar Parker attended Philadelphia Dental College which later became Temple University dental school. In the early 1900s he ran a traveling dental clinic which promoted “painless dentistry.” When accused of false advertising, Parker swiftly avoided legal troubles by changing his first name to “Painless.” The term “painless,” however, is about the last thing that described Parker’s style of dentistry. He claimed, for instance, to have pulled 357 teeth in one day. Painless, indeed.  By the end of his life, Painless Parker operated about 30 dental offices and grossed over $3 million per year.

John Henry “Doc” Holliday – In case you’ve forgotten, the “Doc” of Doc Holliday was actually a DDS degree. John Henry Holliday opened a dental practice in Atlanta, Georgia but moved to the southwest in 1873 in hopes that the climate would help with his tuberculosis. In the West, he took up professional gambling and earned a reputation as a deadly gunfighter. He became close friends with legendary gunman Wyatt Earp and fought alongside Earp and his brothers in the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral. He died at the young age of 35, but has been immortalized in a number of books and films since then.

It goes to show that you can’t judge a dentist by his profession. And just in case you were wondering, the Greenspoint Dental Carolers will be releasing our new single “Filling Those Cavity Blues” this summer. In the meantime, if you’re looking for quality dental care in the Houston area, contact our office today. We promise not to let our raging celebrity egos get the best of us.