Maintaining good dental health is often a case of education. A good dentist will be only too happy to answer any questions you might have on such topics as the best way to clean your teeth or the right foods to eat. There’s an old saying which states that knowledge is power, and in the field of dental health this is undoubtedly true – the more you know about your teeth, the better you’ll be able to look after them.
If you attend a cosmetic dentist’s clinic with a problem tooth, or multiple problem teeth, then there are a wide range of treatments which they can offer. In the case of fairly minor cosmetic concerns, then they may just fit veneers, or suggest a course of whitening treatment, but more major problems may present difficulties which can only be overcome by the fitting of replacement teeth, a procedure for which you may have to attend a specialist dental implant clinic.
No matter what the problem is, and what course of treatment is offered to solve it, the improvement won’t be a lasting one if you don’t look after your teeth properly, and this involves a combination of good diet, the right cleaning regime and regular visits for check-ups.
The more you know about your teeth and the jobs they perform, the better equipped to look after them you’ll be, and your dentist will be willing to explain everything you need to know at the same time as they are performing an examination.
There are various different types of teeth, and each type is formed and shaped in order to perform a specific task when you are chewing and eating your food. For example, the straight flat teeth at the front and centre of the top and bottom row of teeth are known as incisors. The job of these teeth is to slice through the food that you’re eating and the way in which they are prominently displayed means that maintaining the good appearance of the incisors is of paramount importance to the overall impact of your smile. To underline the importance of incisors, they are the first teeth to emerge when young children begin teething.
After incisors, the next teeth to put in an appearance are the canines. These are the sharp pointed teeth next to the incisors and they are used for tearing up tougher types of food. Once the food has been sliced or torn up, of course, it has to be worn down sufficiently to make it easy to swallow and digest. This is work which is done by the teeth further back in the mouth. The first teeth of this type are known as premolars or bicuspids. There are eight of these altogether, four on each side of the mouth, two on the top row and two on the bottom. Next to the premolars are the molars, bigger versions of the same kind of teeth. Looking after your premolars and molars is the best way of ensuring that you can continue to eat a healthy and varied diet throughout your life.
The final teeth that your dentist will probably mention are the third molars, often referred to as ‘wisdom teeth’. These teeth don’t emerge until the age of 18 to 20 and, in some people, they may never emerge at all. Because of their late appearance in an already established set of teeth, wisdom teeth may trigger crowding and, if they do, they will have to be removed.
Being happy with your smile helps you to be happy with the person you are. While cosmetic dentistry can help to transform your smile and deal with particular problems, having the knowledge and will to keep looking after your teeth will ensure that these improvements are sustained.