Why Are Teeth Important For Our Overall Health?

Why Are Teeth Important For Our Overall Health?

Our teeth play a big role in our appearance. A beautiful smile can exude confidence, and a healthy set of teeth can boost your self-esteem. Teeth are an integral part of helping you chew your food easily. They can also help you pronounce certain words correctly.

Anatomy of a Tooth

The top portion of the tooth is called the crown. The portion below the gum line is the root. In between the crown and root is the pulp chamber, where the nerves and blood vessels that supply the tooth are located. The root of the tooth is covered by a layer of enamel. Enamel is made up of calcium and phosphate salts, which are minerals that strengthen teeth.

Underneath the enamel is dentin, which is less dense than enamel and softer, so it can absorb pressure from chewing and biting. Dentin is made of collagen fibers and mineral deposits such as carbonate, calcium phosphate, magnesium, sodium, and potassium.

Located inside the dentin is a soft tissue called the pulp. Pulp is mostly made of nerve tissue, lymph vessels, and connective tissue. It's what gives your tooth sensitivity, temperature, and taste.

Types of Teeth

There are different types of teeth. They are categorized based on shape, size, and structure.


Your incisors are your front teeth, which you use for biting and chewing food. They are also the teeth that show when you smile! 


Also known as cuspids, canines are pointed teeth toward the front of the mouth in the upper and lower jaws. Due to their shape, these teeth are primarily used for tearing food into smaller pieces rather than biting or chewing it. 


Both premolars have one pointed cusp and are used to grind food during chewing, especially in the back of the mouth. They are the most common teeth to be extracted during orthodontic treatment because they are used so often for chewing. If a tooth is lost due to decay or trauma, the neighboring molars often shift toward the gap and become misaligned over time.


Molars are one of the three primary types of teeth in mammals, including humans. These are the flat back teeth and are also described as the "grinding" teeth because they grind food against the molars of other teeth in order to break it down into small enough pieces to swallow it. The molars are also used to chew tough foods, such as meat, and fibrous vegetables, like carrots.

Dental Emergencies That Affect Teeth

A dental emergency refers to any situation that requires immediate treatment. This situation can be caused by a variety of things, including sports injuries or impact to the face or mouth, but they can also occur for seemingly no reason at all. A dental emergency can be painful, but it's important to seek treatment as soon as possible. Here are a few most common dental emergencies we come across:

Toothache: A toothache usually indicates you may need a filling, crown, or other dental treatment. It's often a sign of infection or decay and needs to be addressed as soon as possible to prevent further damage. Call your dentist today for a diagnosis and effective treatment recommendations. Here are some other common symptoms that indicate you need to call a dentist right away.

Knocked-out Tooth: If you've lost a tooth, the best thing to do is try to find the lost tooth and put it back in its place as quickly as possible. If this isn't possible, place the tooth in a clean container or plastic bag with milk or water to keep it moist until you can get to a dentist's office. Do not try to force the tooth back into the socket. Instead, place it in the side of your mouth between your cheek and gums, keep it in water or milk, and see your dentist as soon as possible.

Here is a link to an interesting podcast that shares the story of Ryanne Jones' friend who accidentally hit her in the mouth with a hammer.

Chipped Tooth: A chipped tooth may seem relatively minor, but it can cause discomfort while chewing or eating. In some cases, when a tooth is chipped, it may even cause a sharp pain to radiate to the jaw and gums. If you experience any of these symptoms after chipping a tooth, visit a dentist right away for an evaluation. 

If you wish to learn more, visit Cedar Creek Dental, Office of Dr. Phil Han, at 11786 SW Barnes Rd #360, Portland, OR 97225, or call (503) 646-1811.


Contact Us

11786 SW Barnes Rd #360,
Portland, OR 97225

Email: Office@cedarcreekdentistry.com

Phone: (503) 646-1811

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