How Your Jaw Interacts with Your Teeth

Your teeth and jaw allow you to soften solid food by chewing it and also to take a bite of hard foods. Three have to be proper interactions between your teeth and jaw for your teeth to perform these tasks. This article talks about how your jaw interacts with your teeth.

Structure of Your Teeth

Your teeth are made of a tough, bone-like substance and are held by small openings in your upper and lower jawbones commonly referred to as dental alveoli. They are also anchored firmly in place by a network of strong fibers. The teeth in your upper and lower jaws form two arches that naturally fit together or create a slight overlap when you close your teeth or take a bite. An adult’s upper and lower jaws have two sets of 16 teeth, including four incisors, two canine teeth, four premolars, four molars, and two wisdom teeth. The two sets form a total of 32 teeth.

Jawbones and Jaw Muscles

Your skull is made up of a few plate-like bones, including your upper jawbone (maxilla) and lower jawbone (mandible). While your upper jawbone is firmly fixed to the other bones of your skull, your lower jawbone is attached to your temporal bones by flexible muscles that enable it to move up and down when speaking and eating. When your jaw muscles are tensed (tightened), your lower jaw is pulled up tightly against your upper jaw, allowing you to take a strong bite.

To open your mouth, you just need to relax your jaw muscles. Also, it is possible to move your lower jaw sideways, forward, and backward by engaging various muscles. These movements make it possible for you to grind food between your molars. Apart from chewing, opening, and closing your mouth, your teeth and jawbone rely on each other for survival. For instance, when you chew, the pressure on your teeth stimulates your jawbone so that it can be renewed. Your jawbone can lack stimulation when you lose a tooth or have oral infections that prevent you from using a certain part of your mouth.

Without this stimulation, your jawbone will break down and resorb, leaving you with loose teeth. This means that your body will no longer “need” the jawbone, and therefore it will deteriorate and go away. The rate of jaw bone deterioration and the amount of jawbone lost vary greatly among people.

If you have further questions about your jaw and teet interactionsh, talk to Dr. Kademani right away.