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In order to have an effective conversation with your dentist about your mouth, it helps to be familiar with basic dental vocabulary. That’s why we’ve provided you with a series of word definitions to evaluate:

Let’s review four basic categories of teeth:

Incisors: These are your sharp, chisel-shaped front teeth.There are four on the top arch and four below.

Canines (a.k.a. cuspids): These are located on either side of your incisors and are shaped like points. There are two on the bottom and two on top.

Premolars ( a.k.a. bicuspids): These teeth are usually shaped like a combination of molars and canines, with two points or cusps for chewing food. They are located between the canines and molars as well. Humans typically have eight – two on both sides of both arches.

Molars: These are your primary chewing instruments, with several grooves on their surfaces to break down food.

We hope that these basic word definitions have given you a boost of self-confidence so that next time you talk to Dr. Jay Hildreth and our wonderful staff at St. Marys Dental Center in St. Marys, Kansas, you will feel that you can articulate what is happening inside your mouth. If you have any questions on other parts of the mouth or dental conditions, please don’t hesitate to ask us. You can schedule an appointment by calling 785-437-2771.