Did you know we have different types of teeth? In fact humans have 4 types of teeth which play important roles in our ability to eat and speak.
First of all it’s important to know about the development of teeth in general. Humans have two sets of teeth, which develop in stages.
Primary Teeth develop long before your first tooth becomes visible. A baby’s first tooth appears at around six months of age, but development of those teeth actually begins during the early second trimester of pregnancy. The 20 primary teeth are in place by age 3 and remain until around 6 years of age when they begin to fall out. This happens in order to make way for the permanent set of teeth. Adult teeth start to grow in between 6 and 12 years of age. Most adults have 32 permanent teeth.
Now that we understand the development of teeth we can learn about the types.
Each type of tooth has a slightly different shape and function for example:
Incisors are the eight teeth in the front and center of your mouth which are used to bite. There are four on top and four on bottom. Incisors are usually the first teeth to erupt, both when you start to get your primary teeth at around 6 months and when you start getting your permanent teeth at around 6 years of age.
Canines are the next type of teeth to develop. These are your sharpest teeth and are used for ripping and tearing food apart. We have four of them 2 on top and 2 at the bottom. (No guilt in calling them your vampire fangs.)
Premolars, or bicuspids, are used for chewing and grinding food. We have four premolars on each side of our mouth, two on the upper and two on the lower jaw.
Molars are used for chewing and grinding food. These appear between 12 and 15 months of age. These molars are also known as deciduous molars and are replaced by the first and second permanent premolars (four upper and four lower). Permanent molars come in behind the primary teeth. The first molars erupt around 6 years of age (before the primary molars fall out) while the second molars come in between 11 and 13 years of age.
Third molars are commonly known as wisdom teeth. These are the last teeth to develop and do not typically erupt until age 18 to 20.
Knowing this we must realize the importance of taking care of all of our teeth by never forgetting to brush and floss properly and regularly giving each section of teeth proper attention.
In fact it doesn’t make much sense to only brush your front teeth right? In order to maintain good oral health all of the teeth in our mouth must be cared for, it would also be wise to stop smoking, eat a healthy diet, and see your dentist regularly for dental cleanings and checkups. Speaking of seeing your dentist we also recommend asking for advice on how to properly brush and floss, you might even get a few free samples out of it.