About Your Teeth

Young girl smiling.As a pediatric dentistry practice in the Amarillo, TX area, Dr. Billy Metcalf and his team at Children’s Dentistry of Amarillo are committed to delivering high-quality dental care in a comfortable and relaxing environment. Helping young patients understand how their teeth function and explaining the importance of proper dental care are just a couple of ways in which we work to ease their fears about visiting the dentist. 

Different Types of Teeth and Their Jobs

When your full set of adult teeth finish growing, you’ll end up with four kinds of teeth in your mouth. Each of them performs a unique job to help you chew the foods you eat:

  • Incisors: The front teeth that you use to bite into food
  • Canines: A set of fang-like teeth that break each bite into smaller pieces
  • Bicuspids (or premolars): The teeth at the sides of your mouth that crush food
  • Molars: The teeth in the back of your mouth that help grind down food

    Your Mouth’s Magic Number: 32

    When your adult teeth finish emerging, you’ll likely have a total of 32 teeth. That’s after your first set, or primary teeth, have already developed and then fallen out. These baby teeth, which first emerge between six and eight months old, will finish growing in by the time most children are three years old. 

    Your permanent teeth will likely start to appear around age six, but baby teeth need to fall out to give them enough space to grow. The first of these, also known as secondary teeth, typically finish emerging between the ages of 12 and 14.

    Most people see their adult incisor, canine and bicuspid teeth erupt first. At around age 12, the first sets of molars will start growing in. Finally, they’re followed by your wisdom teeth, adding up to a grand total of 32 teeth in your mouth.

    What’s the Deal With Wisdom Teeth?

    While most individuals see all 32 teeth try to grow in, very few will have room for all of them in their mouths. Many people need to have their wisdom teeth removed once they start to erupt through the surfaces of their gums. This is because they could crowd out and displace other teeth if left alone, causing problems such as pain, swelling and discomfort. Fortunately, you can resume normal eating and drinking soon after these teeth have been extracted and your gums heal.

    Contact Your Amarillo Dentist Today!

    With nearly 25 years of experience in caring for young patients, children’s dentist Dr. Billy Metcalf provides the finest quality care in Amarillo, TX and surrounding communities. Dr. Metcalf and the rest of the team firmly believe that knowledge is power, so we’re here to answer your questions. After all, we want to help you understand how to best care for your teeth so they stay healthy throughout your lifetime.

    Still have questions about dental care or want to schedule an appointment? You can speak to our friendly office staff by calling (806) 351-0008 or use our convenient online appointment request form to schedule a consultation or appointment.