Understand the Four Types of Teeth

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There are four types of teeth in a human mouth. Those are incisors, canines, premolars, and molars. In this article, we’ll take a look at the different types of teeth and some of the most common problems that afflict different teeth.


The incisors are the front four teeth on both the top and bottom parts of your jaw. There are eight incisors in total. Most of the issues with incisors are not related to poor dental hygiene.

The biggest issue dentists see is malocclusion or misaligned teeth. Misalignment can lead to bite issues, TMJ, underbite, overbite, and crossbite. Additionally, because these teeth are exposed to the elements, they also suffer from chips, cracks, and getting knocked loose. Dental braces are used to treat alignment issues while cracks and chips require that the tooth is crowned or replaced entirely.


It’s hard to damage canines, but gum disease is the most likely way that a patient will experience problems with their canines. Gum disease causes the gums to recede leaving sensitive areas of the tooth exposed. This can cause the tooth to decay. Treating the underlying gum disease protects the canine tooth.

Some folks have issues with the way their canines look called “vampire teeth”.

Premolars and Molars

Between the canines and the molars are transitional teeth called premolars. The further the teeth go back into your mouth, the more prone they are to cavities and tooth decay. This happens when the decay progresses to the point of leaving the pulp and nerve exposed. The exposed nerve is sensitive to temperature changes and some foods.

The molars are in the extreme back of your mouth flanked only by two wisdom teeth on either side. The wisdom teeth are usually the first to get cavities, become infected, and produce pain. This is why many folks reach adulthood without their wisdom teeth.

Another risk factor for molars and premolars is bruxism or grinding teeth. Bruxism can result in serious damage to the molars that results in tooth pain, jaw pain, headaches, and other dental problems. Bruxism is generally treated using a mouthguard to prevent grinding at night. Since many issues related to bruxism may be psychological in nature, dentists prevent bruxism from doing considerable damage to the teeth or alleviating symptoms related to TMJ.

Problems All Teeth Share

All teeth are prone to infection from the gums. The gums are damaged by plaque and tarter that allow mouth bacteria to come in. This mouth bacteria feeds on the gums slowly causing them to recede. If it recedes far enough, the tooth will loosen and fall out. Constant vigilance is required to prevent this sort of decay. Gum disease causes halitosis (bad breath) and tooth decay.

Peak Family Dental Care Fixes Your Tooth Problems

Peak Family Dental Care services Sedona, Cottonwood, and Flagstaff. If you’re having tooth issues, give us a call and set up an appointment today. We can help!

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