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Five things you probably don’t know about your teeth

Your teeth play an important role in maintaining a sense of wellbeing.

When it comes to maintaining a healthy smile, it’s important that you take good care of your teeth. Fortunately, thanks to advances in the world of dentistry, we now have access to a lot of useful information about how our teeth function, and what we can do to take better care of them. Read on to learn some facts about your teeth, and how to keep your smile in tip-top condition for life…

1.  Everyone’s teeth are different

Did you know that just like your fingerprints, your teeth are unique? In fact, no two people have the same teeth — even within one family. For this reason, dental records can be used to identify human remains. Interestingly, your tongue also has a unique print that is not shared with anyone else.

2.  Enamel is the hardest substance in the body

The outermost layer of your teeth is known as enamel. This substance is extremely hard — in fact, it is the hardest substance in the whole body and is even tougher than your bones. Made of calcium and phosphorous, enamel plays a vital role in protecting the teeth from damage. Unfortunately, the enamel is not immune from damage. For this reason, it is important to practice proper oral hygiene and limit your consumption of acidic foods that can lead to dental erosion.

3.  Saliva protects the teeth

The body naturally produces saliva, a substance that plays a vital role in keeping your mouth healthy. In fact, saliva performs a number of essential functions — this includes producing enzymes that aid digestion and allowing functions like swallowing to occur easily and comfortably. Saliva also helps keep the teeth clean because it washes away leftover food particles and other debris. Because it contains minerals like calcium and phosphate, saliva actually has the ability to neutralise the harmful acids that are present in plaque.

4.  The mouth is full of bacteria

Your mouth is home to hundreds of species of bacteria, some of which contribute to a healthy oral environment, while others can cause dental problems. One of the most harmful types of bacteria is known as streptococcus mutans — every time that you eat something that contains sugar, these bacteria digest the sugar and convert it into acids that can wear away at the enamel of your teeth. It’s important to remove harmful bacteria and plaque from your teeth regularly in order to minimise damage in the long term. Without regular brushing and flossing, plaque will harden into tartar, which can lead to issues like gum disease and tooth decay.

5.  Discolouration could be a sign of decay

If you have noticed stains and discolouration on the surface of your teeth, it is possible that the issues are caused by certain foods and drinks, and could be merely cosmetic. Some discolouration, however, especially yellowing, could be an indication of tooth decay. When the white enamel wears away, the underlying dentin is often exposed, which makes the teeth appear yellow. If you notice that your teeth appear more yellow than white, it is well worth consulting with your dentist so that they can determine the cause of the issue and recommend a suitable treatment plan for you.

How can we help?

At Kitchener Street Dental, we love to keep our patients informed and educated about oral health. If you have a question or concern about the condition of your smile, we encourage you to come in and see us so that we can help.

We offer a comprehensive range of dental services, including general, restorative and cosmetic treatments. To find out more about what we do, please have a look here.

If you would like to come in and see us, book an appointment here or give us a call at 07 4638 5111.

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