24 questions about your baby teeth


You use your teeth every day, but you probably don’t know much about their anatomy. Maybe it’s time for you to start thinking about some of the questions and getting to know them more. Perhaps you have also flashed in your mind “what materials are teeth made of?”, or you may be curious from time to time: Are teeth considered bones ?

This is your lucky day.

Here are 24 small questions and answers to help you understand your teeth better. These problems run the gamut, from baby teeth to molars, plaque and floss. Come do the research so you can show off your knowledge at your next dentist visit.

Your teeth are attached to two skull bones in your skull. The upper row of teeth sits in the bone that forms the upper jaw (the maxilla); the lower jaw (jawbone) serves as the base for the lower row of teeth.

The mandible and maxilla are the two bones that make up the “jaw” and connect to the skull on the left and right sides. The jawbone is the strongest of the skull and the only one that can move. This comes in handy when you ‘re biting and chewing your food .

  1. How many teeth do you have?

Ancient philosophers like Aristotle once believed that men and women had different numbers of teeth. But we now know better that the complete set of teeth in a female and male adult is thirty-two. You can do the math yourself.

Teeth are arranged in pairs in the mouth according to their different shapes, and the teeth on the left and right sides of the mouth are paired with each other. You might as well look in the mirror for yourself, divide your mouth in half vertically, and you will see that the left and right sides are essentially symmetrical.

  1. What is a crown? (not the crown the dentist put on for you)

To answer this question, we must first analyze the structure of teeth.

Teeth are like icebergs. An iceberg appears to be just a large piece of ice floating on the water, but in fact it is like a mountain made of ice, with only a small part exposed to the sea. The same goes for your teeth, which grow above and below the surface of your gums. When you open your mouth, the shiny white part you see is called the crown.

This part of the tooth comes into contact with food, drink and saliva. It’s the hard shell that protects the entire tooth, so the crown is covered by a hard substance called enamel, and underneath the enamel is a layer of hard tissue called dentin (or ivory).

  1. What is enamel?

By now you probably thought your bones were the hardest tissue in your body?


That honor should go to the enamel, the hard white material that covers the crowns and is the real champion.

Enamel is the outer layer of the tooth and its main component is calcium phosphate. This mineral makes enamel very hard, so it protects the other softer, more sensitive parts of the tooth—the dentin, pulp, nerves, and blood vessels—and it makes the tooth withstand the wear and tear of everyday use.

  1. Do the teeth have roots?

There must be. Just below the crown is the root, hidden below the gum line, where connective tissue called the periodontal ligament is anchored to the jawbone.

The root of the tooth is mostly ivory. The dentin forms channels that hold a living tissue called pulp, filled with blood vessels and nerves that run through the root of the tooth and into the jawbone.

  1. Do teeth feel?

You may find that your teeth are sensitive to cold or hot temperatures. This can happen if the roots of the teeth are exposed above the gum line, or if the enamel wears away. When the dentin that makes up the root of the tooth is exposed, the nerves inside are stimulated by the temperature of the food and drink in the mouth.

Sensations of heat and cold are transmitted by nerves in the exposed dentin to the brain, which interprets these signals as pain.

This is another reason why enamel is so important. It acts like an insulator, protecting the tooth from extreme hot and cold temperatures. The enamel protects the sensitive nerves in the dentin from painful stimulation.

  1. Why do teeth have different shapes?

Take one look at your smile and you’ll know that each of your teeth looks different. In fact, each of your teeth can vary widely in shape and size.

Although the teeth in the mouth vary, they can be classified according to their overall shape. Adults have eight incisors, four canines, eight premolars, and twelve molars.

Counting from the middle of the mouth to the left and right, the front teeth begin. These large front teeth are as sharp as knives. Next to the incisors are the canines, which have a sharp point called a crest, similar to a dog’s tines.

The following teeth are called premolars. These teeth have two peaks and are sometimes called bimodal teeth. Finally, coming in last are the molars, which are large and flat.

  1. What are the functions of the different types of teeth?

The unique shape of each tooth serves a special function when you chew food.

Incisors are good at digging in and holding a piece of food, such as taking a bite out of an apple. Your front teeth also help you sense the texture of food.

The canines tear food into smaller, more manageable pieces. Canine teeth come in handy when you’re dealing with a thick piece of protein, like roast chicken .

The shape of the small molars is between canines and molars. Small molars help you cut and tear food like canine teeth.

The molars are used for grinding food. When you chew, food moves inward in your mouth, allowing your large molars to grind it down. The molars break down food into a size that is safe to swallow.

  1. What are wisdom teeth?

We have four wisdom teeth, also called third molars. They are shaped like molars, and they function like molars when you chew. But some people’s wisdom teeth need to be removed.

Wisdom teeth erupt during your early twenties. This is the last permanent tooth to grow in the human body. When wisdom teeth erupt, they can push against other teeth, causing pressing and discomfort, and even forcing other teeth to appear crooked.

If your dentist thinks your wisdom tooth is causing a problem, it’s usually surgically removed; this procedure is usually done before it erupts. If all your wisdom teeth are removed, your number of permanent teeth will be reduced from 32 to 28, but don’t worry, you’ll be fine and may even feel more comfortable without them.

  1. If teeth are so strong, how can they break?

The bulk of enamel is calcium phosphate, a mineral compound also found in bone that gives teeth their white color and is very strong and durable, but not indestructible.

Your teeth, like the rest of your body, can get injured. If your tooth is broken or cracked, your dentist can repair the damage, but it won’t heal on its own.

  1. Are teeth considered bones?

Even though they look similar, teeth are not bones. Surprisingly, they are actually very different. why?

  • Teeth are stronger than bones. As mentioned above, enamel is the hardest tissue in the human body.
  • Human bones are protected by muscle and skin, and your teeth are simply hidden behind your lips.
  • Although teeth are made of a tougher material than bone, human bone can regenerate old and damaged tissue, whereas enamel, once lost, never returns.
  • There are blood vessels and nerves in both bones and teeth, but bones actually produce new blood cells in the bone marrow, which is different from teeth. The inside of the tooth has a lining similar to bone marrow, and this is the pulp protected by enamel.
  1. What color are healthy teeth?

Healthy teeth are bright white, the color coming from calcium phosphate in the enamel; the tips and edges of the teeth appear translucent or sky blue. This is completely normal.

Yellowing of teeth indicates loss of enamel. The dentine under the enamel is yellow, and when the enamel wears away and the dentine is exposed, the tooth loses its color and starts to turn yellow.

You can strengthen enamel and help restore its whiteness by consuming calcium-rich foods such as milk, yogurt, almonds, and edamame. You can also drink fluoridated water to support enamel health. Fluoride strengthens the enamel and prevents the yellowish dentine from being exposed.

  1. How many teeth does a child have?

A child has twenty deciduous teeth, made up of eight incisors, four canines and eight molars. These teeth will gradually fall out to make room for larger permanent teeth to grow. By about age three, most children have all their milk teeth.

Baby teeth are made of the same material as permanent teeth, with enamel covering the crown and roots made of dentin and pulp. Baby teeth are smaller and more spaced than permanent teeth because as children grow, the bones of the face and jaw grow, making the teeth more spaced apart.

  1. When do teeth start to develop?

Teeth begin to form before birth. Between the third and fourth months of pregnancy, cells called “ameloblasts” produce the enamel that makes up teeth. This occurs around the tooth germ (the first stage of tooth development). These germs remain under the surface of the gums until they are fully formed—about six months to a year after birth.

  1. Why do teeth fall out?

During childhood, teeth are lost to be replaced by larger adult teeth; this is a natural and healthy part of the dental life cycle and most baby teeth fall out by the age of twelve.

The tooth falls out when the roots of the baby teeth begin to dissolve in preparation for the arrival of the permanent teeth. This process takes several weeks and ideally allows the tooth to fall out on its own. After the deciduous teeth fall out, new permanent teeth grow in the same place.

  1. What is dental caries?

As the name suggests, dental caries (commonly known as cavities) are small holes in the layers of enamel and dentin. Dental caries is the result of tooth decay, which occurs when bacteria invade cracked or damaged teeth.

Simple sugars are the culprit in causing dental caries. Soda, fruit juice, candy, and similar foods can linger on your teeth, and bacteria in your mouth can convert these simple sugars into acids that eat away at the enamel on your teeth, and cavities develop.

You may find out on your own that you have a cavity. Many people experience tooth pain and discomfort when they have cavities; your teeth may be particularly sensitive to temperature, or you may experience pain when eating sweets.

Sometimes you need to rely on your dentist to help you find cavities. Your dentist can find caries on x-rays or use dental equipment to look for sore spots and cavities on the surface of your teeth.

Fortunately, dentists can repair cavities with dental fillings. First, the dentist uses a small drill to scrape away the decayed part of the tooth, and then uses a safe material to fill in the missing part of the tooth. Fillings may be made of gold, silver, porcelain or composite resin. Your teeth will feel much more comfortable after a filling.

  1. What is plaque?

If your teeth feel sticky after eating, plaque is to blame. When you eat sugary foods, the bacteria in your mouth settle on your teeth and gorge on those simple carbohydrates . These bacteria form a mucous film on the tooth surface called plaque.

To remove plaque is simple, brushing your teeth is the most effective way, brushing twice a day can achieve the best results. You can also rinse your mouth with an antiseptic mouthwash to keep the bacteria count in your mouth down. Or consider oral probiotics to help maintain a healthy bacterial balance.

  1. What is dental calculus?

Plaque that remains on your teeth may harden into calculus (tartar), a hard mineralized substance. Once there is calculus, tooth decay will appear soon. Tartar makes it difficult to brush properly, and it requires professional tooth cleaning to remove.

Plaque usually forms above the gum line, but tartar can build up above and below the gums. This can cause problems with the dentin and bone below the gums, so it’s important to take good care of your teeth to avoid calculus buildup.

You can protect your teeth from tartar by brushing, flossing, and using mouthwash every day. Another great way to avoid tartar is to strengthen your enamel with fluoride. Most municipal water systems add this mineral, which strengthens enamel and helps repair damage caused by bacteria and acids in the mouth.

  1. Why brush your teeth?

People have been brushing their teeth for thousands of years. In 5000 BC, the ancient Egyptians used smashed twigs and eggshells to brush their teeth. Nowadays, everyone uses a toothbrush with soft bristles to remove food leftovers after meals.

Brushing your teeth is the best way to avoid cavities and you should use a pea-sized amount of toothpaste twice a day. When brushing your teeth, brush gently; brushing too hard with your toothbrush can irritate your gums and expose the sensitive dentine underneath.

The ideal brushing time is about two minutes, and you can keep a timer or clock in the bathroom to measure brushing time. Switch sides from time to time when brushing, covering both the left and right teeth and the inner and outer sides.

Toothbrushes should be replaced when the bristles wear out, which is recommended every three to four months. After each brushing, the toothbrush should be rinsed with hot water. After recovering from a serious illness, you should also replace it with a new toothbrush.

  1. Is flossing important?

Absolutely important! Brushing your teeth cleans what you can see, but you also need to clean between your teeth. Using dental floss can scrape off food residue and plaque, and prevent tartar from accumulating in places where brushing cannot reach. Flossing also cleans the areas of your teeth that are hidden below the gum line.

Floss daily to keep the spaces between your teeth clean and healthy.

  1. How to avoid dental caries?

Brushing and flossing are the best ways to maintain healthy teeth and enamel, but diet also plays an important role in avoiding cavities.

Avoid soda, fruit juice and other sugary drinks , these are the most harmful, drink water instead . Simple carbohydrates and starchy foods should also be limited. If you have a sweet tooth, ditch the candies and eat naturally sweet fruits, which are high in fiber to stimulate saliva and remove sugar from your teeth. Acidic foods such as citrus fruits will gradually corrode the enamel, so be sure to drink plenty of water when consuming them.

Calcium-rich foods such as milk, yogurt and cruciferous vegetables are very good for your teeth. Celery and other crunchy vegetables help remove debris from your teeth. Dental care should be done in the same way as waistline control , which means choosing whole foods and nutrient-dense meals instead of easy sugary snacks.

  1. What is Bruxism?

Stress management is part of taking care of your teeth. Stress can make you tense and make you clench your fists; some people gnash their teeth. This can lead to a condition called bruxism (or teeth grinding).

Teeth grinding occurs during sleep, so people who grind their teeth often don’t know it. But grinding your teeth can cause excessive wear on the flat parts of your teeth, which can also lead to jaw soreness and headaches.

Your dentist can tell if you grind your teeth, and they may recommend that you wear braces to sleep to keep your teeth from grinding against each other.

There are other ways to combat bruxism. You may wish to practice deep breathing before bed and place a warm washcloth on your cheek below your ear to help relax the muscles in your face and jaw. Put the tip of your tongue between your front teeth and let your jaw open and relax.

If you’re stressed, find someone to talk to. Finding a trusted friend or mental health professional and telling them what you think and feel can help you manage stress or anxiety. You may find that you sleep better and stop grinding your teeth.

  1. Are your teeth causing bad breath?

Poor oral hygiene is often at the root of bad breath. When you’re not brushing or flossing, food debris on your teeth becomes a feast for bacteria in your mouth. When bacteria break down sugars and starches, they create some unpleasant smells.

Sometimes the food you eat can be the source of bad breath, with garlic and onions being the most notorious, and spicy foods are also on the list.

Whether your bad breath is caused by bacteria or the food you eat, the best way to get rid of bad breath is to brush and floss your teeth. Brush your teeth twice a day to keep your breath fresh, and if you have a particularly strong-smelling meal, clean your mouth afterwards too.

  1. Are your teeth unique?

It’s surprising, but your teeth are as unique as your DNA and fingerprints. No one’s teeth are exactly like yours; they are different in shape, size and position. Even identical twins don’t have exactly the same teeth!

Keep teeth white and bright

Take care of your teeth and make sure they are in good shape. You should take good care of your teeth to maintain your oral health. Brush and floss daily, eat less sugary foods that can eat away at enamel, and visit your dentist regularly.

Smile, no one else in the world has the same teeth as you!

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