You constantly use your teeth to bite and chew delicious food without thinking about it. Even though you might not think about your teeth and how they work, beneath the surface they are made up of many different parts, each with a unique function. To help you learn more about your teeth that help you enjoy your meals every day, here is what makes up your tooth anatomy:
- Crown: this is the visible part of your tooth.
- Enamel: the tough, shiny, pearly white covering of your crown.
- Cementum: covers your tooth roots. It is not as hard or as white as enamel, and attaches to tiny fibers that help anchor the tooth to the jawbone.
- Dentin: the hard yet porous tissue located under both the enamel and cementum of your tooth. Dentin is so strong it is even harder than bone.
- Pulp: the soft center of your tooth. The pulp contains blood vessels and nerves, and nourishes your dentin.
- Root: the anchor of your tooth that extends into the jawbone. The number of roots ranges from one to four.
- Periodontal membrane/ligament: this fleshy tissue between tooth and the tooth socket holds your tooth in place.
- Nerves: your teeth nerves convey messages like hot, cold or pain to and from the brain.
- Incisor: these are your front teeth and have a narrow edge. Your eight incisors are used to cut food and have one root.
- Premolar: your eight premolars are located between your canine and molars, and each has one root. They have two points at the top.
- Molar: a wide, flat tooth found in the back of your mouth. Your 12 molars grind food when you chew. Molars in the top jaw have three roots, and your molars in the lower jaw have two roots.
Your teeth need special care, just like the rest of your body. It’s important to brush them twice a day, floss daily and visit your dentist bi-annually for a professional teeth cleaning and checkup. If you are in need of a dental cleaning, contact the Lakeway Center for Cosmetic and Family Dentistry and set-up your appointment today.