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Teeth facs - Did you know?

I’ve found a few interesting facts about teeth and I’m very glad I did because some of them are really “food for thought” for me. Enjoy!

1. Did you know that teeth are not bones although both substances are hard, white and contain calcium and unlike the bones, teeth can’t renew themselves?

2. Teeth are the hardest substance in our body because the tooth enamel is a mineral hard as a rock and it protects the dentin underneath it which is soft and made from live cells and minerals. When the enamel gets damaged it can’t repair itself (so it’s a fortune that today we can replace it with veneers!) To protect the tooth enamel oral hygiene is very important as well as eating foods rich with calcium.

3. Baby teeth begin to form before birth in the womb and they come out when the baby is 6-12 months old.

4. Stomatologists recommend 4 minutes of brushing teeth – but the average person brushes them for 48 seconds. It is very important to brush the teeth properly because that is how the plaque is eliminated from the gum line, and caring for your gums is very important because it prevents periodontal disease which forms pockets around your teeth in which bacteria can dwell. The horrible outcome of periodontal disease is the loss of teeth.

5. Dental plaque forms because of the acid from food and drinks and it disintegrates the tooth enamel. Dental plaque begins to form only 4 hours after brushing and it contains more than 300 hundred bacteria. The use of antibacterial mouthwash will help keep those harmful bacteria in control.

6. Did you know that of all child diseases tooth decay is number one and it is 5 times more common than asthma and even 7 times more common than hay fever? If it’s not treated it can cause malnourishment, problems in speaking and learning. And did you know that one tube of toothpaste contains enough fluoride that can kill a baby?

7. Sugar is one of the main cause of tooth decay. Sadly, today it’s not enough to be careful with sweets only because almost every processed food contains sugar like ketchup and yogurt. Our daily dose is 90g and that includes sugars from fruit and vegetables. Tooth decay can lead to a myriad of illnesses like heart diseases, gastrointestinal problems, sinusitis, osteoporosis, and diabetes.

8. Did you know that cheese forms a protective sheet around your teeth and neutralizes the acids in dental plaque?

9. We all know that red wine can stain the teeth but one of the worst teeth stainers are from curry sauce, balsamic vinegar, and ketchup. If you eat a leafy salad or steamed vegetables before a meal, it will form a protective barrier that will prevent your teeth from staining. But the best protection is your saliva and that is important to sip water regularly! The average person makes around 25 000 quarters of saliva during his lifetime – and that is enough to fill two pools.

10. Dried fruit is much worse for your teeth than fresh fruit because the process of drying frees the sugars that contribute to the forming of dental plaque. (and I am eating dried dates and plums like there’s no tomorrow.)

11. I was thrilled to found out that the way our teeth are arranged in our mouth is unique like our fingerprint and that no one else has a smile like me. This sounds cool: No one has a smile like you!

12. Women smile more than men do and children smile 26 times more than adults do. Allegedly, women smile 62 times a day on average when men smile only 8 times a day on average (I can’t believe this but if it’s true this needs to be fixed). Children smile around 400 times a day on average while adults smile only 15 times a day. Can we all work on this together, all by ourselves?

13. Did you know that rats’ teeth grow while they live and that mosquitos have teeth too and two times more than us? And that pigs have 44 teeth, dogs 42, and cats 30 and an armadillo has 104 teeth? This is useless information but it’s totally fun.

14. The first toothbrush was found in China around 1400. These ancient toothbrushes were made of horse and badger hair.

15. Ancient Romans used toothpaste made of honey and crushed eggs. In history for toothpaste people used a combination of different ailments that were considered good for oral hygiene like coal, ash, chalk, lemon juice and similar.

16. If I am right handed I have a tendency to chew food on the right and a left handed person has a tendency to chew on the left.

- Anđa Marić

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