Although it’s important to understand what makes up your teeth, the actual anatomical words associated with dental care can be confusing. After all, your teeth aren’t just solid pieces of bone, but rather complicated parts that work together to help you perform important tasks. Here’s a brief breakdown of the anatomy of your teeth and why it’s essential to regularly visit your dentist.
Enamel refers to the thin outer layer of your teeth. It essentially acts as a shell that protects your teeth, meaning it’s the hardest layer of tissue in the entire human body. Enamel can be found along the crown of your teeth, the area that’s visible outside of your gums. One interesting element of enamel is that it’s translucent, meaning you can see through it under a light. Although enamel acts as a natural protective barrier against everyday chewing, grinding, and biting, it can still disintegrate if you don’t regularly visit your dentist.
Dentin is the part of your tooth that resides just beneath your enamel. It’s another piece of hard tissue that contains microscopic tubes. This is what contributes to pain or sensitivity when your enamel is damaged. When intense unexpected heat or cold enters through these tubes, they trigger your body’s pain response.
Even so, the good news is that dentin is regenerative, something that differs from enamel. Dentin forms when odontoblasts, created in your dental pulp, begin to develop and mature. The overall purpose of dentin is to support your enamel since it is much less fragile and contains fewer minerals.
This refers to the layer of connective tissue that connects the root of your teeth to your gums and jawbone. In other words, it covers the root of your tooth that attaches to your periodontal ligament. The cementum essentially maintains the shape of your tooth by keeping it over your gum and bone. It also helps with your teeth’s repair and regeneration. This is why dental work is just as important later in life since the cementum may recede and expose your tooth’s root.
Contrary to popular belief, your tooth isn’t entirely made out of its hard, shell-like characteristics. In reality, the previously mentioned anatomical features of your teeth are just one part of their core structure. The outer portion of your teeth protects one of their most sensitive parts, the pulp.
This jelly-like substance within your tooth contains nerves, blood vessels, connective tissue, and other specialized cells. Its primary purpose is to create dentin and provide nutrition to the rest of your tooth. Exposure to your pulp leads to a very high risk of infection and requires immediate dental attention.
Synergy Cares about Dental Care
Are your teeth in need of some care and attention? Our compassionate and experienced oral surgeons at Synergy are prepared to provide you with the best possible care for your teeth! Contact us to talk about your oral health needs and schedule your appointment today!