10600 York Rd Suite 105 Cockeysville, MD 21030

How Well Do You Know Your Teeth?

Know Your Teeth: Primary vs. Secondary

Humans naturally go through two sets of teeth in our lifetime: primary and secondary teeth. The primary teeth, or “baby” teeth, begin growing when we are about six months of age. The secondary teeth, or “adult” teeth, replace primary teeth starting around age 6 and are our permanent teeth throughout adulthood.

The average adult has 32 teeth, but they have different functions based on their shapes and sizes. Just as players on a sports team all have different roles, your teeth work together on the same team to accomplish a goal.  

The Types of Teeth


The eight teeth in the front of your mouth are used for biting off pieces of food. There are four incisors on the bottom and four on top.


These teeth have a sharp, pointed appearance resembling the fangs of a canine, hence the name. There is a canine on either side of each incisor, so there are two on top and two on the bottom. These teeth are used to rip and tear food.


The bicuspids are also known as the premolars, and they are used for chewing and grinding food. Two are located on either side of each of the canines.


Molars do the heavy lifting in the mouth, as they chew and grind up food. These flat-topped teeth are perfect for grinding food, but their location in the back of the mouth makes them more difficult to clean. Many people grow a third set of molars, called wisdom teeth, which sometimes need removal if the mouth is too crowded. Some people don’t get wisdom teeth, though. 

Comprehensive Dental Care in Cockeysville, MD

From routine care to the treatment of complex concerns, we take a personalized approach to your care for the best possible patient experience. Our commitment to continuing education means that your dentistry is supported by the latest techniques for maintaining, restoring or enhancing your natural smile. We look forward to treating you!

Schedule your appointment online or call us today at 443-733-6613.