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There are many interesting structures in your mouth—all of which have something to do with your overall health. While we do not yet fully understand the depth of the impact, it is clear that oral health affects body health and vice versa. There are many studies currently underway to make the connection between the two so that we may better treat various diseases that have an oral affiliation. To help you understand, below is a basic education on the teeth.

Incisors: These are the wedge-shaped front teeth and what people see when you smile. Other than being the showcase of your mouth, these teeth are the cutters, choppers, and slicers of the mouth. They do the dirty work of making large food into bite-sized morsels. Incisor means blank and you have four of them in the upper and four in the lower jaw.

Canines: The canines are also called cuspids—which means “pointed end.” You can’t imagine a vampire without them. You have two on the top and two at the bottom. They are your pointiest teeth made for tearing.

Premolars: Next in line are the premolars which are called bicuspids. Why? Because they have two points. They have more surface to them on top and aren’t quite as spear-like at your canines, but hey are also meant mainly for tearing and ripping. You have eight, two sets on top and two sets below, and they are the neighbors of the canines.

Molars: Generally you’ll have two sets of molars, and if you keep your wisdom teeth you will have more. These are the chewing and grinding teeth that mush up your food into little bits to make it more easily digestible and move it down the esophagus and into the stomach. They also have some small cuspids, but they are pretty flat and take the major force and pressure when you eat. Because of this, it’s important to pay attention to the molars when brushing since they are generally the ones that can develop cavities.

If you’d like more education about the make up of your mouth and teeth, call Dr. Rex L. Bullock and our helpful team at Rex L. Bullock DDS, Inc. Phone: 951-737-1149, or come by our office in Corona, CA.