At the age of approximately 6 years we start to replace our deciduous teeth with adult teeth.
The adult tooth grows under the deciduous tooth and as it grows up the roots of the deciduous tooth dissolve away so the bit that falls off and goes to the fairies is only half a tooth- the crown.
All the deciduous teeth are replaced by adult teeth no’s 1-5 and 3 more grow behind them- your adult molars. These do not have baby precursors, why? Because you only have a little head as a child but as your head and jaws grow you have more room for them.
Adult teeth are numbered 1-8 in each quadrant.
It is very important to look after your teeth. If you get your first adult molar at the age of 6 years and you live ‘till you are 85 [hopefully], you are asking that little tooth to survive for nearly 80yrs! It cannot repair itself if you damage it. You would never expect a road or a bridge or a car to survive that long without care, attention and maintence so how can you ask your teeth to?
You need to keep them healthy, clean and intact, just like you would anything else.
If only we could have a third set when we are older and wiser but the fairies only come once!
Baring accidents there is no reason why every tooth should not survive from the minute it appears to the day you’ pop your clogs’.
You may be quite content to turn the key in the ignition of your car without ever knowing what goes on under the bonnet. You know you have to take it to be regularly serviced, to put the right fuel in it, to keep it clean inside and out, don’t park it anywhere dodgy, don’t leave it at the sea side so it rusts. This you know and you do because your car cost you a lot of money. Your teeth came free you need to take as much care of them as if you paid for them. Which doesn’t mean having things done to them it means caring for them so they don’t need to have anything done and so they last you a lifetime.
The human body is a marvellous machine but it is a machine for which there are very few spare parts.
A tooth is ‘not a vessel to be filled’.
Your teeth do not break of their own accord – you break them.
They don’t form cavities of their own accord, it’s not something they do as a way of passing the time- you allow cavities to form by not looking after them properly.
You get gum disease because you allow it to happen, there is a caveat here as 10.8% of the world’s population are genetically predisposed to gum disease but these people can be helped and that’s not the other 89.2% of you!
A filling does not ‘cure’ your tooth of decay, it merely repairs the damage and hopefully restores the form and function as best it can with whatever artificial materials are to hand.
If you drill a hole in a teacup it will never be as strong as it was before, you can repair it but it will never be the same.
If your house was burning down would you call the builder or the fire brigade?
You don’t have to clean all of your teeth, just the ones you wish to keep!
You aim to keep your teeth for life, there for you have two objectives
- To learn all you can about their health and welfare
- To teach yourself how to care for them properly.
This information and your dental team are there to help you if you wish!
Adult Teeth- diagram.