Many of us think that humans have different kinds of teeth in their mouth to help us chew and grind our food. That is true, however, our various teeth serve many functions. The different kinds of teeth in our mouth support many aspects of our jaw construction. Teeth also help us to speak. There are four main types of teeth in our mouths. A further three categories, which are very rare, also exist but these mostly occur in a growing jaw.
Here are a few of the different types of human teeth, as well as their functions:
Incisors – Humans have eight thin and straight teeth located at the front of their mouths. Four of these teeth, called incisors, are located on the top of the mouth and four of them are located on the bottom. Your incisors help you to bite into food, especially foods like apples or those which need to be bitten into smaller pieces. They also help you to pronounce words and help to support your lips and facial structure.
Canines – Each human has four teeth which are pointy and sharp, located just beside the incisors. Those teeth are called canines and two of them are located on the top of your mouth and two of them are located on the bottom. They also help cut food into pieces. Canines not only support the lips, but they also help to pilot other teeth into the right place where the upper and lower jaws meet.
Premolars – Premolars are also known as bicuspids and are located behind the canines. These teeth have a completely flat surface and they help to chew and grind food. Not only that, their flatness helps to support the height of the face. Fully grown adults usually have 8 premolars in their mouths. Four are located on the top and four are located at the bottom.
Molars – The molars are located behind the premolars. An adult usually has 12 molars in their mouth. Six are located in the upper jaw and six are located in the lower jaw. These teeth have a completely flat surface and have the same function as the premolars; the molars help support the height of the face and help to grind food. The molars located on the lower jaw usually have two roots, whereas the molars located on the upper law have three roots. The American Dental Association also states that wisdom teeth are also forms of molars.
Supernumerary Teeth – An adult usually has 32 teeth in total. However extra teeth, which are called supernumerary teeth, may grow. People may have an extra incisor, an extra canine, or even an extra molar.
Natal Teeth – Natal teeth are also known as fetal teeth. These teeth usually appear at birth. Natal teeth are usually very weak and exist in the lower jaw. They can fall out very easily. Dentists often advise to have these teeth removed as early as possible to avoid any problems in the jaw or with the individual’s other teeth.
Humans have quite a variety of teeth. Each of our teeth serves an important purpose, so it’s crucial that we take steps to keep them as healthy as possible. Brushing and flossing twice a day, as well as regular visits to Michael S. Connally, DDS, will help you maintain your pearly whites. Schedule an appointment at Michael S. Connally, DDS today!