Teeth allow you to chew food, making it easier to digest and absorb nutrients. Each type of tooth has a different shape and performs specific tasks. Here's the breakdown on your pearly whites:
Incisors: Located at the front of the mouth, these eight teeth (four on top and four on bottom) have sharp biting surfaces used for cutting or shearing food into small, chewable pieces. They also help you pronounce words as you you speak and support the lips.
Canines: These are situated at the corners of the dental arches, two on the upper and two on the lower jaw. They are your sharpest teeth with a pointed surface used for ripping and tearing food apart. Canines, or cuspids, also guide all the teeth into place when you close your mouth.
Premolars: There are eight of these teeth in your adult mouth (four on the top and four on the bottom) right behind the canines. They have a flat biting surface and their function is to tear and crush food.
Molars: These teeth have flat biting surfaces larger than premolars and are used for chewing and grinding food. There are eight total with four on the upper and four on the lower jaw.
Third molars: Most commonly known as Wisdom Teeth, these are the last to erupt and positioned in the back of the mouth - two on top and two on the bottom. Some people never develop third molars at all. But for those who do, they can cause crowding and may need to be removed.
Take good care of all your teeth by flossing and brushing twice a day with these proper techniques. Rinse after all meals and visit the dentist regularly for checkups and professional cleanings.