Called molars or molars, these are flat teeth located at the back of the mouth. They can vary in size and shape, but they are the largest teeth in the mouth. Molars are round in shape and are used to grind food into easy-to-swallow pieces. The smaller and sharper front teeth are used to bite and tear food. Molars are designed to withstand a great deal of force when chewing, grinding, and squeezing, and each molar is attached to the jaw by two to four roots.
The average adult has twelve molars, six of which are in the upper jaw (identified by their dentist as "maxillary" due to their location in the upper jaw) and six in the lower jaw (identified by the dentist as "mandibular" due to to its location in the upper jaw). lower jaw). There are three molars on each side of the upper and lower jaw.
Types of molars
There are three types of molars. They appear after the child loses baby teeth:
- The first molars, also called six-year molars, are the first of three to erupt around six years of age.
- Second molars, also called 12-year-old molars, because they erupt around 12 years of age.
- Third molars or wisdom teeth appear between the ages of 17 and 21 .
Anatomically, molars are designed to withstand a great deal of force when chewing, grinding and compressing, thanks to the large crown and two to four roots firmly implanted in the jaw .
Why do we have wisdom teeth?
Third molars or wisdom teeth are remnants of our evolutionary past, when the human mouth was larger and better suited for additional teeth. These extra teeth were helpful for chewing, especially when chewing on foods like roots, nuts, leaves, and tough meats. This type of diet was hard on our teeth, especially without the beneficial care products we use today like toothbrushes, toothpaste, etc. dental floss, which means that the teeth of our ancestors suffered a lot of wear due to cavities .
Even with the current popularity of the Paleo diet, modern people do not consume foods that require these additional teeth. Our food tends to be much softer, and with cooking and cooking, the day of a healthy wisdom tooth is gone. However, evolution has not caught up with us yet and therefore additional teeth still appear in our late youth.
Wisdom teeth problem
While it hasn't gotten rid of our wisdom teeth yet, unfortunately evolution has made some adjustments to the size of our jaw bones throughout our history. The jaws of modern humans are smaller than those of our ancestors . This creates a number of problems when these vestigial wisdom teeth try to clench.
When wisdom teeth form, our other teeth can block them and are called "impacted" teeth. If a wisdom tooth partially erupts, it can become a hard-to-reach haven for bacteria that can lead to serious infections of the gums and surrounding tissues. Wisdom teeth may never come out . It also brings with it problems, including the possible development of cysts or tumors that can cause significant damage to the jaw and teeth if left untreated.
These problems are the reason many people need to have their wisdom teeth removed . It is recommended to perform this operation at an early age, when complications are less likely and minimal.
Some people may not need to have their wisdom teeth removed urgently because they come without a problem – according to one study, this figure is about 15 percent of the population. Even in these cases, wisdom teeth removal may be recommended to avoid problems that may develop later in life, when surgery has a higher risk of complications and a longer healing time.