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Teeth are essential to your bone structure and digestion. Having the correct number of teeth helps you stay healthy. Adults have 32 teeth, which is 12 more than children.
Most people begin adulthood with 32 teeth, including four wisdom teeth. In adults, there are four different types of teeth:
Wisdom teeth are also known as third molars.
Third molars are the last permanent teeth to erupt. The wisdom teeth typically erupt between the ages of 17 and 21. However, wisdom teeth can erupt many years later.4
Wisdom teeth may not need to be removed if they are:5
However, in many cases, wisdom teeth do not have room to grow correctly and can cause issues. Erupting wisdom teeth can grow in at many angles in the jaw, even horizontally. This can cause dental problems like infection or pain.
When to remove wisdom teeth is not always clear. Speak with your dentist or an oral surgeon regarding the position and health of your wisdom teeth for advice.
Wisdom teeth extractions are usually suggested between the ages of 18 and 30.
Children have 20 baby or primary teeth.
Primary teeth gradually fall out, replaced by permanent teeth. In some circumstances (for example, with the front teeth and premolars), permanent teeth push the baby teeth out.
In other cases (for example, with the permanent molars), permanent teeth come through the gums at the back of the mouth, behind the last primary tooth in the jaw.
Your child’s teeth will start to erupt around 6 months old. They will typically get all their primary teeth by age 2.
However, each child will grow and lose teeth on their timeline. Parents and caregivers should not worry if their child’s teeth do not precisely follow the patterns above.
Check with your child’s dentist if they have a delay of longer than one year. Dentists can perform X-rays to ensure that the baby and/or adult teeth are present and developing correctly.
Some children are congenitally missing a tooth or have a supernumerary (extra) tooth, causing them to have less or more than the average number of teeth.
According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), dental exams should begin as soon as the first tooth appears.
When this occurs, begin brushing your child’s teeth daily and schedule a dental appointment. Most children should visit the dentist by their first birthday.
The first baby teeth to shed are the lower central incisors, around age 5 or 6. The primary first molars are usually lost between 9 and 11.
Children typically lose all their baby teeth by around the age of 12.
The first permanent teeth to grow through the gums are typically the central incisors and/or the 6-year molars. They are called 6-year molars because they typically erupt when a child is around 6.
The rest of your child’s permanent teeth will erupt between 6 and 13. If they develop wisdom teeth, these usually erupt between ages 17 and 21.
Over-retained primary teeth are teeth that do not exfoliate at the appropriate time. This condition can be caused by:
If your child’s primary teeth have not shed when expected, speak with your child’s pediatric dentist and an orthodontist.
It may be possible to retain a baby tooth into adulthood. The crown, roots, and alveolar bone of the over-retained baby tooth must be in good condition and not cause structural or esthetic issues.3
However, if your child’s tooth is ankylosed, the orthodontist may suggest that the tooth be extracted. This depends on the following, among other factors:
While most adults have 32 permanent teeth, having fewer is possible and relatively common. Certain oral health conditions can affect the growth of your permanent teeth, such as:
Missing teeth result from complex interactions between genetic and environmental factors.
The following may also lead to missing permanent teeth:
Other hormonal, environmental, and infectious conditions may also be associated with missing teeth. Hypodontia is more common in females than males and occurs at a higher-than-average rate in identical twins.
There are many effective ways to restore missing permanent teeth, including:
The timing of treatment can be essential when planning for and managing missing permanent teeth in kids. Your child must visit a dentist regularly to stay updated about treatment timing and options.
Humans have two sets of teeth during their lifetime: baby teeth and permanent teeth. Children have 20 teeth, whereas adults have 32.
Children lose their baby teeth from ages 6 to 12 when the permanent teeth erupt. Wisdom teeth, also known as third molars, typically erupt between 17 and 21.
While most people have 32 teeth, having fewer or more is possible. Some genetic conditions may affect tooth development. Treatments for missing teeth include dental implants, dentures, and braces.
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