Have you ever stared into the mirror, trying to get a good look at each of your teeth? Did you realize that your teeth health is an indicator of your overall body health? It’s true! Medical researchers are currently studying the connection between the two. For years, doctors and dentists have seen the connection, but we have yet to understand all of the causal relationships. That should change in the coming years as we learn more. Until then, it would be good for you to know the basics. To that end, here is a short primer on your teeth.
Generally, all adults will have 32 teeth. There is a condition called hyperdontia where they can have more, but that is a rare condition and not the norm. Among these teeth are 8 incisors, 4 canines, 8 premolars, and 12 molars—including 4 wisdom teeth which you may or may not need to have removed to give more room for the other teeth as they grown in.
Incisors are the lumberjacks of your mouth, ax-shaped teeth for cutting and chopping at the forefront of the smile. You’ll want to keep these clean because they are what you flash for the world to see. They are meant to cut up your food into bits.
Canines are the pointy teeth that are the hallmark of Dracula, or your dog. Just like them, you use them to bite, rip and tear into things. They are also called cuspids, which means “pointed end.” A perfect description of the spear-like teeth.
Premolars sit beside the canines and are also cuspids, but they have two pointy parts so they are called bicuspids. They are also used for tearing.
Molars make up the most teeth in your mouth with a total of 12. They perform the most punishing function of chewing and grinding. The force and pressure these teeth take on make them prone to cavities. So, take care of these beauties with frequent brushing to get food particles out of the nooks and crannies.
If you’d like more education about the make up of your mouth and teeth, call Dr. Gemma Dalton and our helpful team at Gemma Tanglao Dalton, DDS. Phone: 817-571-1667, or come by our office in Bedford, Texas.