Tooth and Bone

A recent Instagram search listed a post under the title “Amazing Facts.” In that post, it said that “Teeth are the only bones in the human body that are exposed to open air.” Since the post had that authoritative title, many people might conclude that teeth are indeed bones. In order to set the record straight, let’s discuss the similarities and differences between these features of the human body, teeth and bones. 

What is Bone?

The average human adult has a skeletal structure consisting of 206 bones. These rigid structural components are made up of collagen and calcium phosphate. Inside our bones is marrow, which produces red and white blood cells. Bones are living tissues, constantly being maintained and remade with resources provided from a healthy diet. Exercise keeps our bones strong and fit, as they react and respond to the stresses of supporting the human body and acting as the anchor point for our many different muscles.

In most cases, a broken bone can heal. A soft collagen callus forms at the fracture site. New threads of bone cells grow on either side of the fracture and eventually meet, growing into each other until the fracture is healed. (That’s why it’s important to set the bone in place properly, before restraining it with a cast or wrap. If a bone heals without being set, it can lead to deformities.)

What are Teeth?

Teeth consist of the hardest substance in the human body, enamel, which is even stronger than bone. Enamel shares a component with bone, namely calcium phosphate. Teeth also have nerves and blood vessels inside them, like bones do. And that’s pretty much where the structural similarities end.

Teeth do not experience constant repair from the body when broken and, with the exception of the pulp, are not living tissue. That’s why a cracked, chipped, or broken tooth will not heal on its own. If a permanent tooth gets dislodged or pulled, your body will not generate a replacement. Any restoration of a damaged or broken tooth requires outside assistance from a dentist, like those at the Placerville Dental Group. We can restore your damaged tooth to its proper look and function. 

Take Care of Your Teeth

A healthy diet is very important to build and maintain strong bones and teeth. Do your best to avoid foods that are low on nutrition and high on sugar. Limit sugary drinks and focus on imbibing water. Proper exercise is important to keep your bones strong, just as chewing and chomping on hard foods like apples and carrots helps give your teeth a proper workout. And there’s something else you can do to help your teeth — keep a good routine when it comes to taking care of them! Brush your teeth twice a day and floss at least once daily to not only keep your teeth healthy but looking great as well!


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