10 Things You Didn’t Know About Your Teeth

  1. Your teeth are unlike anyone elses.

Just like fingerprints: They are all you! Did you know dental records are sometimes used to identify human remains? Even identical twins do not have identical teeth.

  1. The icebergs in your mouth.

Just about one third of each tooth resides under your gums. Healthy, happy gums healthy are just as important as your teeth. It’s good to check your gums to make sure they appear pink in color, and firm to the touch.

  1. There are 32 Choppers in there!

Counting from your front teeth to the back, you’ll count eight incisors (your front teeth), four canine teeth, eight premolars, and 12 molars.

  1. The hardest part of your body is not your biceps – it’s your enamel!

You enamel – the outermost layer of your teeth, is like a hard shell, protecting the rest of the tooth. Enamel is mostly made of calcium and phosphate, like your bones, but is stronger because of the specific proteins and crystallites that form it.

  1. Enamel isn’t indestructible.

The enamel protecting your teeth is TOUGH, but it can chip or crack, and is still susceptible to decay. Sugars and acids, like in soft drinks, join forces with with bacteria in your mouth and attack your enamel…  And THAT is the start of tooth decay. Soft drinks can do some major damage if you drink them often, or sip on them throughout the day.

  1. If you see yellow, you are seeing decay.

No, not just a coffee stain. Enamel contributes to your teeth’s white appearance. When it decays, your teeth may start to turn yellow. If you are feeling any tooth pain, decaying enamel could also be to blame as well.

  1. Enamel doesn’t grow, but dentin does!

The layer that lies beneath the enamel is called dentin. It’s also harder than your bones. The small channels and passageways in dentin transmit nerve signals and nutrition through the tooth. The three types of dentin are: primary, secondary, and reparative. Dentin continues to grow and change throughout your life where enamel stays the same.

  1. Three hundred type of bacteria are living in your mouth.

There are up of 200 to 300 different species of bacteria contained in plaque. Streptococcus mutans, (the big trouble maker for poor tooth health), converts sugar and other carbohydrates into the acids that eat away at your teeth.

  1. Enemy Number 1 – Plaque!

White, sticky and constantly growing. If you don’t get rid of plaque by regularly brushing and flossing, it will harden and develop into tartar. Brush and floss those teeth at least twice daily and make sure you see your dentist for regular cleanings.

  1. You are a saliva machine!

Your body produces about a quart of saliva every day! That’s about 10,000 gallons over a lifetime. Saliva is integral in helping your overall health. It makes food easier to swallow and contains enzymes to jumpstart digestion. Saliva washes away lingering food particles on your teeth, and contains calcium and phosphate – that neutralizes the acids in plaque that cause damage and decay.

So now you know 10 more things about your teeth! If you have any additional questions about healthy teeth and gum maintenance, contact us here at Nicollet Station Dental!

Call 612-338-5557, or email us at  info@nicolletstationdental.com