Teeth Development and Growth Explained

Humans are born without any visible teeth in their mouth, but it doesn’t mean that the primary ones aren’t already developed (even prior birth) and wait for the right time to come out. Primary teeth in babies are already formed (only partially though) and remain hidden under the gums till the infant turns six months of age.

Perhaps you have seen those X-ray pictures of a baby’s skull with a jaw full with teeth that haven’t erupted yet (it looks a bit creepy, but it’s how nature works) even though the baby was nowhere near the teething stage.

Primaries usually begin to come out when a child is between six months and one year of age.

Primaries are formed long before the baby is born; so around the sixth week, the fetus starts developing the teeth. After this crucial sixth week, the jaw develops skin cells that thicken up and make dental cells that later form various tooth parts.

During this time teeth are forming in three stages called bud, cap and bell stage (named based on the cells of every dental part, respectively).

You can also jump to: What are the parts of a tooth?

After the development has passed these three stages, it goes into the stage of calcification. In this stage, it already has a regular shape. In this stage, it gets its enamel, dentin, and cementum and gets harder thanks to calcium and minerals.

The bud forms a group of cells that combine in order to create a tooth. They form three parts including the enamel organ, dental follicle, and dental papilla. The dental follicle helps three essential components to develop:

  • Cemento Blasts – This part creates the cementum, the hardest part of the tooth and the hardest material that can be found in human’s body in general.
  • Fibro Blasts – It helps for the development of the periodontal ligaments; it connects teeth with the alveolar bone with the help of the cementum.
  • Osteo Blasts – This is a cell that secrets the main tooth bone (alveolar bone) and forms around the root.

Finally, a tooth is ready to come out, and this is the last stage called the stage of eruption. A tooth will start slowly moving upwards (this is an excruciating process for the baby, which is why they cry during the eruption stage).

This stage happens much faster for primary teeth. When comes to permanent ones, the process may take up to three years (from the formation till the emerging on the surface). The primaries need about one year.

Teeth Brushing & Flossing Tip From Dentists

Always keep your teeth healthy and brush twice a day. Some dentists even recommended on brushing after every meal. You can simply do it manually or by using a best electric toothbrush so that you can speed things up and to make sure to get every bacteria. Oh! And don’t forget about flossing! Flossing your teeth is just as important as brushing. You can use a top flosser here.

Also learn more about the importance of flossing.

Eruption Phases

Teeth Development

The Eruption Happens in Three Phases:

  • First, there is pulling of the hard tissue from the enzymes in the dental follicle that’s the most crucial part of this process.
  • The following process is the so-called hydrostatic pressure that happens at the very tip of the developing tooth; it helps the process of pushing the tissue until it finds its way up to the surface.
  • Finally, the metabolic activity in the periodontal ligament (located around the root) is doing its work – the eruption force helps teeth move slowly until they entirely come out.

Dental Plans: As a parent, you should consider on having a dental insurance. We highly recommend it just in case there is an emergency during the baby eruption phases.

The phase of eruption mostly happens at night (that is why most babies cry during the night time). This occurs because the hormones that control this process are released during the night hours (thyroid hormones or melatonin for example).

The eruption process is repeated constantly until all teeth are out. It also happens with the permanent ones (although this process isn’t painful) and stops when the tooth “touches” the ‘partner’ from the opposite jaw (nature is miraculous, so when this occurs, it stops growing to create a pleasant balance in your jaw).

Most children get their primaries between six months and one year (usually they get only the central incisors on both upper and lower jaw, during this time); the entire process of eruption can go up till three years of age.

Primaries don’t serve the human being for a long time, because the permanent ones can start growing as early as the age of six.

The process of permanent teeth growth ends around the age of thirteen.

The exception of this rule goes for the third molars (wisdom) which start to develop in adolescence and may start growing in later teenage years, but it’s not weird if they start emerging in the early to mid-twenties.

The exfoliation process happens when permanent teeth form and as they make their way to the surface; the primary must fall out in order to make a place for the new ones. The primaries’ roots begin to dissolve until the root gets weak and is no longer able to keep teeth firm in the jaw; this is when they fall out.

Teeth Whiting Tip (Keep Smiling)

Don’t we all wish to have those beautiful shining white teeth? There are a few ways you can achieve them. Simply keep brushing your teeth from a very young age or you can use the “Best Teeth Whitening Products” recommended by dentists. There are also whitening kits and whitening strips that are very effective as well.

Here Are the Four Main Parts of a Tooth

Parts of the Tooth

  • Enamel – This, as you know, is the outer layer that looks shiny and has a unique color for every person. The enamel is the hardest material not only in your mouth but also in your whole body.
  • Dentin – This is the inner layer and forms the core and is also the biggest tooth tissue.
  • Pulp – This layer is safely tucked in the dental core; its inner part is soft and is home to the nerves. It produces dentin. This part hurts the most when you have caries or when the dentist is drilling your tooth.
  • Root – Firm and big (size depends whether it’s a primary or permanent), the root keeps the tooth firmly secured in the jaw.

Important, learn in much more detail on different types of teeth and what do they do.

Humans get their first twenty teeth (ten on both jaws) during the first three years of their life.

The number of permanent teeth increases up to twenty-eight (in adolescence), and finally, that number finishes with thirty-two as the third molars erupt (in most cases it is a painful process).

But, not every human being gets all third molars and even if they do, more often than not they, get removed due to lack of jaw space, caries or other problems.

Up next: What is a Cavity? (Symptoms & Causes)

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