Bring your attention to your mouth for a bit. Do you feel them? They are the hardest substance of the entire body, harder than some bones, and there are thirty-two of them. Do you imagine even trying to eat your favorite meal without them? Or trying to produce the words in order to have a conversation? Teeth can do all of the above for you and they also allow you to smile every time you want. Below, the anatomy of the teeth and their parts will be further explained.
Teeth have several layers with different functions and characteristics. The first one being the enamel, which is the white, external and visible part of the tooth. Underneath, there is a layer of strong tissue called the dentin, where microscopic tubes are located. When damaged, the enamel can produce sensitivity or pain inside the tubes of the dentin. The other three layers are the pulp, the cementum, and the periodontal ligament, and they are all in charge of keeping the tooth attached to the jaw and gums.
These formations inside your oral cavity are made by a large number of proteins like collagen and minerals like calcium phosphate, which is the hard, rock-like element most visible in our teeth. When we are young children, about 6 months old in most cases, we start to grow what is known as primary or milk teeth, made up of only 20 pieces. These are 4 incisors, 2 canines, and 4 molars; the same in the upper and lower jaw. Then, by the time most individuals are 6 and 12 years old, their milk teeth start being replaced. At age 21, most grown adults have their new complete set of teeth, made up by 32 pieces, including:
- 8 incisors
- 4 canines or cuspids.
- 8 premolars or bicuspids.
- 12 molars. These also include wisdom teeth.
Teeth can tell more than your hygiene
Teeth have different shapes and sizes in every single person. The crowns of our teeth are even already lying under our gums when we are babies, and they can be as unique as our fingerprints. However, your teeth can show your aging process, your health state, your diet habits and even where you are from.
Avoid plaque at all cost
This white and sticky substance, made up of more than 300 different types of bacteria, grows and multiplies inside our mouths constantly, covering our teeth. You can better notice it when you wake up in the morning and you feel a flimsy texture on top of them. If it stays on your teeth for too long or if it’s not properly removed when brushing, it can cause major tooth decay, and eventually, develop into tartar.
How often do we brush our teeth?
On average, we spend more than 38 days in our entire lifetime brushing our teeth, however, quality dental hygiene is crucial in order to avoid tooth decay. Part of maintaining proper care of your teeth includes brushing not only the surfaces of them but also the sides and the spaces between each tooth, where a huge amount of bacteria builds up.
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