A Quick Guide to Different Types of Teeth


If you run your tongue over your teeth, you can feel that they are all different shapes and sizes. Although your teeth play a major role in your appearance and in allowing you to pronounce your words correctly, their main purpose is to tear and shred your food so that you can consume it. Each tooth is different because each serves a specific purpose in chewing. Therefore, if you lose one or more, then your replacement teeth should be carefully designed to function the way the original tooth was meant to.

Incisors – for Biting

Beginning in the front and center of your mouth, your incisors are the four teeth on top and the four teeth on the bottom. Usually the first to come into contact with your food, the incisors are used to bite off manageable chunks of sustenance. Incisors are also the first teeth to erupt, the primary (baby) set typically appearing around the age of six months.

Canines – for Ripping and Tearing

Moving away from the incisors, your next teeth are canines. Your four canines are your sharpest teeth, used for ripping and tearing food, and are the next to develop. Primary sets of canines usually appear between 16 and 20 months of age.

Bicuspids – for Chewing/Grinding

Bicuspids, commonly called premolars, are next in line and are used for chewing and grinding food for easier digestion. A healthy mouth consists of four bicuspids on either side of your mouth (eight total), the first of which begin to appear at around age ten.

Molars – also for Chewing/Grinding

Two sets of molars, or primary molars, are also used for chewing and grinding, ensuring that your meal is properly prepared for digestion. A third set of molars, usually referred to as wisdom teeth, are the last teeth to develop, and in some cases, never develop at all. In many instances, the development of wisdom teeth can cause crowding, which can lead to a number of various dental problems. Unlike other types of teeth, third molars do not need to be replaced if lost or extracted.

Learn More About Caring for and Replacing Your Teeth

Today’s modern dental prostheses are custom-designed to mimic any lost tooth, regardless of what type of tooth it is. To learn more, or to schedule a dental implant consultation, call Just Wright Dental Surgery Center in Waxahachie, TX, today at (469) 732-1987. We also proudly serve patients from Navarro County, TX, and the surrounding communities, including Corsicana, Mildred, Eureka, Ennis, Fairfield, Teague, Blooming Grove, Dawson, Hubbard, Hillsboro, Mexia, Groesbeck, Kerens, Malakoff, Rice, Centerville, Buffalo, and Athens.