According to the (WHO) World Health Organization’s data, oral diseases cause pain and discomfort to a considerable percentage of individuals around the world. A whopping 3.58 billion persons around the globe suffer due to tooth decay. The periodontal gum disease ranks 11 in the list of the world’s most prevalent medical conditions. The most shocking part is that oral cancers happen to be amongst the top three cancers that kill people in developed as well as developing nations. The lack of awareness regarding oral health, especially, teeth, is worrisome. Let’s try and understand more about the structure of a tooth.
Different parts of teeth
A tooth appears to be a simple, hard, white part that helps in cutting, grinding food. However, its internal structure is very complicated. The gumline, crown, root, enamel, dentin, and tooth pulp play a crucial role in the functioning of a tooth.
Crown is the top part; it is the only visible part of the tooth structure. Molars, used for grinding food, have a completely flat surface, while the front ones have a chisel-shaped, sharp surface that helps in cutting food.
The gumline is the area where the gums meet the tooth. This is the part that gets infected due to gum disease and gingivitis. If an individual fails to brush and floss daily, plaque and tartar start building up on the gumline. Gums also keep the entire denticle together and offer protection to the sensitive soft root.
The root acts as a connection between the tooth and the bone below gums. It plays a crucial role in keeping the tooth in place and makes up two-thirds of the overall structure.
Tooth’s enamel is its outermost layer and protects the internal tooth structure like a shield. It is made up of minerals and can be damaged due to decay if the person fails to follow proper oral hygiene. Unfortunately, it does not regenerate and cannot be repaired. It can be re-mineralized if damaged up to a certain extent.
Below this cover, there exists another layer in the tooth structure called dentin. It consists of tiny tubes that are sensitive and can cause pain when attacked by bacteria.
The tooth pulp tissue (also referred to as pulp chamber) is found in the central part of the tooth structure. It consists of blood vessels and nerve tissues that can cause severe pain when attacked by decay.
Other small yet crucial parts of the structure are the neck, cementum, alveolar bone, and periodontal ligament.
How many teeth does a human being have?
Most of these structures start arriving during the teenage years, and until then, kids have 20 teeth, which are referred to as placeholders for adult teeth structure. Milk teeth are whiter compared to permanent ones. Milk teeth have thinner dentin as well as enamel and are more prone to decay.
Adults have 32 teeth; these include 12 molars, eight premolars, four canines, and eight incisors. Out of the 12 molars, four happen to be wisdom teeth. People often end up removing them due to misalignment and other dental issues arising out of them.
What is the function of molars?
The flat, large looking teeth located in the back are molars. They work the most, as they grind the food before swallowing. They may vary when it comes to shape and size but remain the most massive teeth in the mouth.
The smaller teeth in the front are sharp, they can tear food quickly, and molars, on the other hand, are designed for grinding the same while chewing. Each molar has two to four roots that are connected to the jaw bone.
Adults have 12 molars, six in the mandibular (lower jaw), and another six in the maxillary (upper jaw). Put simply; there are three molars on each side of the upper and lower jaw.
How many premolars do humans have?
As the name suggests, premolars are teeth that are located just before molars. There are two premolars present on each side of the upper as well as the lower jaw.
Molars and premolars difference
When it comes to differentiating between molars and premolars, the difference between their shape and size is the most significant factor. Premolars have two cusps; while on the other hand, molars are large and have four cusps.
Cavity-causing bacteria get accumulated between the spaces present in these cusps. Crevices in molars are difficult to clean in comparison to those in premolars. So, molars are more vulnerable to cavity-causing particles in contrast to premolars.
When it comes to the root, premolars have one root, except for the maxillary first bicuspid that may have two in some cases. Molars have two roots, and upper molars may have three in some cases.
How many roots does a tooth have?
As mentioned earlier, the part that connects the tooth with the bone socket is referred to as a root.
Dentists suggest the first premolars, as well as first, second, and third molars, have two roots. The second premolars may have one or two roots. Bicuspids usually have just one root. On the other hand, the large looking upper molars have three roots. The larger the structure, the more is the number of roots.
The most reported dental health issues
The most commonly reported oral health condition is periodontal disease. It impacts the gum tissue and bone supporting the tooth. Reports from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate more than 40 percent of the American population suffers from mild, moderate, or severe periodontal disease. Gums turn red, appear swollen, or even start bleeding. If ignored, the condition can result in tooth loss. It is common among patients who fail to follow proper oral hygiene. Treatment options include scaling and root planning, and opting for anti-biotics to control the infection. In case if the disease reaches a severe stage, the dentist may recommend opting for bone grafting, tissue grafts, and flap surgery to get rid of bacteria pockets.
If you are worried about something that seems abnormal about your teeth, you should consider fixing an appointment at Roswell (GA) based TruCare Dentistry to discuss the issue.