Keep On Smiling

Take care of your Smile!

Without teeth, you can't eat or even speak well! So chewing gum wouldn't be any fun!

Did you know that teeth are like bones ?

It's true!! Teeth grow before you are even born and continue to grow until your'e an adult! They are made up of five parts the crown, enamel, dentin, pulp and root. The crown is the part of each tooth above our gums, we first see. Enamel is the hardest part in our entire body! It is the white covering on the top of each tooth. Dentin is the layer under the enamel which we can't see. Pulp is the softest part of teeth, it's made up of nerves and blood vessels and the root, is what holds each tooth together.

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Guess how many teeth we have ?

Well as a baby up until around 3 years old, we get our first set of teeth! Around 3 years of age we have about 20 "baby teeth" or primary teeth. After three years our "baby teeth" start to fall out , not all at once silly, but over your childhood up until adulthood for some we begin to get our primary "adult" teeth. As a permanent tooth grows, it puts pressure on the baby tooth. That pressure causes the root of the baby tooth to dissolve and the baby tooth falls out. By the time you are an adult, you should have 32 teeth!

Are all of our teeth the same?

The answer is NO! We have four different types of teeth, each with a specific task to handle different kinds of food. Incisors are used for cutting. Canines are for tearing. Premolars are used for crushing and molars are used to grind up food.

Wow! So how many different types of teeth do we have as an adult?

You have:

  • eight incisors - four in your upper jaw and four in your lower jaw in the front of your mouth. Incisor means "biting tooth" and these teeth help you bite into your food.
  • four canines - two in your upper jaw and two in the lower jaw. Your canines are located next to the incisors. Canine means "like a dog." These teeth are pointed and are used to stab and tear at food.
  • eight molars - four in your upper jaw and four in your lower jaw. These teeth in the back of you mouth help grind your food.

Do you think we should take care of our teeth? Why?

Your'e right! We need to take care of our teeth, it' s important !

(Tune ~ Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star)

Got my toothpaste,got my brush,

I won’t hurry, I won’t rush.

Making sure my teeth are clean,

Front and back and in-between,

When I brush for quite a while,

I will have a happy smile.

This is why going to our family Dentist, is important. Dentists find out what's wrong, fix, and help prevent problems with teeth.

So, what kinds of problems can we have with our teeth?

When you eat, bits of food (particles) pieces of food are left on your teeth. When sugars from the foods we eat combine with bacteria in your mouth, plaque forms. The plaque forms acids that can eat a hole in the tooth. This is called a cavity.

The cavity can spread into the dentin and then into the pulp if left untreated. If bacteria gets into the pulp, it can cause the blood vessels to swell and press on the nearby nerves. Ouch! Now you have a real toothache and it's time to make an appointment with your Dentist.

How do we keep our teeth HEALTHY?

You can prevent cavities and gum disease by brushing your teeth at least twice a day. You should use a fluoride toothpaste and a toothbrush. Fluoride prevents tooth decay, or cavities. But fluoride can help even after your teeth are formed. It works with saliva to protect tooth enamel from plaque and sugars. By using fluoride toothpaste, for instance, everyone can enjoy some cavity protection.

You should brush in the morning, the evening and after meals! Besides brushing, you should also floss once a day. Flossing removes food and plaque from between your teeth and places your toothbrush can't reach. This also helps prevent gum disease.

Sesame Street: Healthy Teeth, Healthy Me: Brushy Brush PSA

So make sure to :

  • Make regular visits to your dentist and eat right.
  • Not regularly eat candy and other sticky, sugar foods because they are bad for your teeth.
  • Have a good healthy diet with fruits and vegetables.
  • Brush and floss often!
  • Visits your dentist twice a year to keep a healthy smile!
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