How often do you think about your teeth, and how much do you know about these tiny chewing organs? 

Your teeth may only cross your mind when it’s time to brush them or when you’re thinking about the next visit to your dentist. As small and as mundane as teeth may seem, you’d be surprised of what they’re all about. Here are 10 incredible facts about your teeth that will make you go “hmm”.


#1 Teeth are unique like fingerprints.

Did you know that your teeth are as unique as your fingerprints? No two sets of teeth are the same, not even for identical twins.
Fun fact: your tongue also has its own unique print!


#2 You can only see 1/3 of your teeth. 

Just like an iceberg, there’s more to your teeth than meets the eyes.

A tooth is composed of a crown and a root. The crown is the functional part of the tooth, and is visible at the surface of your gums. The root, on the other hand, is the support system hidden underneath the gums. It locks your teeth to the jawbone and keeps them from falling off!


#3 The enamel is the hardest tissue in your body. 

The enamel is the outer shell of your teeth. It’s the strongest and hardest tissue in the entire human body. Composed mainly of calcium and phosphate, the enamel protects the crown of your teeth. As strong as the enamel is, it isn’t completely invincible. It can still crack or chip from excessive force. The sugars and acids found in both foods and soft drinks can, when ingested often, also attack the enamel and cause it to break down.


#4 Your oral health says a lot about your overall health. And vice versa. 

Did you know that inflamed gums or tooth decay can affect other parts of the body and signal a potential disease? Your mouth is home to many bacteria and without proper oral hygiene, some of them may reach harmful levels. Since your mouth is the entry point to both the digestive and respiratory tracts, bad bacteria can settle there and cause health issues, like cardiovascular disease. Alternatively, some physical conditions can affect your oral health. Diabetes, for example, can put your gums at risk by weakening your body’s immune system and blood level control.


#5 Teeth are the only body parts that cannot self-heal.

Most body parts can repair themselves over time after suffering some sort of damage, but teeth can’t.

Anatomy teaches us that cells are the basic unit of life. To make sure our bodies keep functioning, cells regenerate and help body organs and tissues heal over time. However, teeth enamel is mostly composed of inorganic material and minerals. The very low levels of proteins and cells make it impossible for this body part to heal by itself.


#6 Your mouth is home to A LOT of bacteria.

Are you ready for this? A single human mouth contains over 6 billion bacteria. That’s almost as much as the total human population. Because of this incredible number, scientists call the human mouth a “human oral microbiome.

Of course, not all bacteria are harmful – most of them are just minding their own business in there. But a lack of good oral hygiene can help two bad strains of bacteria flourish in between your teeth: Streptococcus mutans and Porphyromonas gingivalis. Streptococcus mutans mainly causes tooth decay by producing acids that can erode your enamel, while Porphyromonas gingivalis is linked to gum disease. See why it’s so important to keep those teeth of yours clean and fresh?


#7 Over brushing can harm your teeth.

Most people don’t commit to brushing their teeth for a full 2 minutes. But if you’re the kind of person that brushes for too long and too harshly, you might want to rethink your daily routine This excessive habit can cause abrasion, and ultimately tooth sensitivity and gum recession.


#8 Saliva prevents teeth from decaying

Saliva is a powerful agent that helps prevent tooth decay. It washes down the sugar and acid from food particles that can otherwise harm teeth and let bad bacteria thrive. That’s why having a dry mouth increases your chances of getting cavities, plaque, and tooth decay.


#9 Humans spend an average of 38 days brushing their teeth.

Is that too much, or not enough? We’ll let you decide.


#10 And, if you still don’t know it: you have 32 teeth!

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