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hat mode of protection do you think I mentioned in the subtitle? the government ruined the teeth of their mental patients because they started biting people all over the country? No, It was a project executed by the government to bring a stop to something. Just before the beginning of the second world war, the government of the United States decided to recruit only men who had six intact opposite teeth into the army. There was a terrible outbreak of dental disease across most parts of the world. Mouth odor, teeth cavity, and decayed teeth made the top of the list.

Treatment for damaged teeth was not available, you either pull off your decayed teeth or live with it. There was a need for quick and decisive action to bring a stop to this unbearable pain.

The Sweden government was the first to launch a full-scale effort in bringing this to an end. Dental doctors working for the government were charged with the mandate of finding a lasting solution to this. Just like every other scientific procedure, there was a need to find its cause before stating the precaution.

Vipeholm mental facility

Vipeholm was a mental health facility and it was the best place to carry out such an operation. At least that’s what the government thought. They concentrated mental patients from small wards across the country to Vipeholm. They were able to gather over a thousand of them for this operation. It was a promise to cure them but they were used as lab subjects to find a solution to the common problem of the people.

Mental patients at Vipeholm used for the experiment. | source

They were called idiots. The idiot was a medical terminology used in mental studies for patients with an Intelligent Quotient less than 25. They behave and relate at the level of a regular toddler. The ages of these idiots danced between 15 and 70 with a very low life expectancy.

There weren’t many activities at first, they were simply situated in big halls where they ran about shouting or cuddling pillars. The troublesome ones were either bathed in cold water or forcefully put to bed. It took the subjects about six months to adapt to their new environment. It was time to begin the experimentation.

The experiment

The sole physician for the Vipeholm, Hudo Froderberg along with other staffs began the experiment by grouping the subjects into seven categories (zero-six). Those in group zero were considered to be biologically lower than most animal species (Note that the grouping was based on mental stability and not physical appearance). Subjects from the higher groups were given chores to perform under thorough supervision and it was these subjects who could feed themselves that were selected for the test.

During the first two years of the experimentation, the subjects were given half the quantity of sugar found in a regular Swedish diet, floride tablets, and little starch and vitamins A, B, and D.

This diet continued for two years. They were studied during period and the subjects developed no new teeth cavities (holes in teeth). It was time they move to the next phase.

The Inhumane last phase

In this phase, the subjects were divided into four categories. The first were given sweet and sticky bread with extra sugar, the second took beverages saturated with sugar. The last groups were given caramel, chocolate, and sticky toffee. The whole idea was to increase the quantity of sugar in these meals to twice the amount found in most common Swedish meals.

Those who took beverages were the control. Subjects that took sticky bread, sweet, and toffee were studied for any side effects. It took less than two weeks for these subjects to develop teeth cavities, decayed teeth, and terrible mouth odor. In general, the teeth were destroyed leaving the subjects in terrible pain.

Officials in the facility decided not to treat those in the lower categories and those who could not bear the painful treatment available at that time.

Why use innocent mentally challenged

Human rights were not well defined in the 20th century, and the statement that everyone should be treated equally was not so implemented at that moment. People that were mentally or physically disabled were considered to be in debt to the state. The government had this will that these people needed to give something back to humanity for taking care of them. And since these people can’t work to earn a significant sum of money so the government can deduct tax the only option was what the government says it is.

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