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Tooth

German: Zahn

1 Definition

The tooth is a calcified structure which is embedded in the jaw bones with its roots and protrudes into the oral cavity with its crown. Its function is biting and grinding food, as a first step of digestion. Humans possess two dentitions with different, specialised teeth.

2 The two dentitions

2.1 Permanent teeth

28 teeth (+ 4 wisdom teeth) consisting of:

2.2 Primary teeth (milk teeth)

20 teeth consisting of:

  • 8 anterior teeth
  • 4 canines
  • 8 molars

3 Macroscopic structure

3.1 Crown

The crown is built up of enamel and dentin. The dentin is covered by the enamel (crown-dentin).

3.2 Root

The root mainly consists of dentin, covered with cementum (root-dentin). The crown and the root are separated through the neck of the tooth.

3.3 Pulp chamber

The pulp chamber is covered by dentin and contains the pulp, a soft tissue built up of vessels and nerves. The pulp is separated into the crown-pulp and the root-pulp by the cervical region. On the root-tip there is a little opening, the so called apical foramen.

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