Your mouth is a fascinating part of your body that helps to keep you alive in more ways than one! From breathing to eating to being able to communicate and socialize, the mouth is the center of many aspects of who we are as a species and as individuals. If you’ve ever been curious about this special part of your anatomy, read on to learn a few fun facts about teeth, dentistry, and a few things in between!
1. You’ll spend over two months of your life brushing your teeth.
If you brush for two minutes, twice a day, every day, for most of your life, you’ll be brushing for between 70 and 80 total days!
2. Your enamel is the hardest substance in your body.
Made up of mineralized tissues, this stuff is tougher than nails. Enamel is designed to help us chew and tear through our food, but it still has its weaknesses. When not cared for, enamel can chip under pressure or decay due to plaque and bacteria.
3. Your smile is as unique as your fingerprint.
There’s a reason that detectives use dental records to help identify bodies, and it’s because every person’s teeth rest in their mouths differently—even identical twins! Additionally, your tongue print is unique to you, too!
4. People used to believe tooth pain was caused by tooth worms.
Before modern times, many people believed that a worm lived in your gums and that this worm was both responsible for boring holes into your teeth, causing cavities. They also believed that when it moved it caused pain. Modern science was able to debunk this theory and we now know poor dental hygiene is to blame for cavities and toothaches.
5. There are about 300 different kinds of bacteria in your mouth.
And altogether, you likely have millions of individual bacteria in your mouth at any given moment! While there are hundreds of strains of bacteria, Streptococcus mutans is the one known to wreak the most havoc on teeth. These bacteria convert sugars and carbohydrates into acids and causes tooth decay.
6. Everyone has (pretty much) the same number of teeth.
All humans have 20 baby teeth that will eventually fall out and make way for their permanent adult teeth, of which we have 32. The slight differences come into play when people start to develop wisdom teeth, or third molars. Adults can have anywhere from 0 to 4 wisdom teeth, and many scientists believe over time humans will evolve to stop developing them altogether!
7. You only see about two thirds of your teeth.
A third of your tooth, known as the root, is hidden beneath your gums. Because there is so much more tooth than meets the eye, it’s vitally important to keep your gums healthy to promote your overall oral health!
Your teeth and mouth are fascinating things that require diligent care to keep healthy and happy!
If you’d like to up your oral health game, give us a call at Olympia Fields Dental Associates to schedule your next appointment today!