It’s International Kissing Day, and that means — well, it means that you should go give your loved ones a kiss. At Victoria Dental, we know that kissing is one of many things that can affect the health of your mouth. But don’t worry, we won’t regale you with any icky details about bacteria. Instead, here are five interesting facts about your mouth.
Enamel is the hardest substance in your entire body. This is the outermost layer of your teeth — the layer that you see when you talk, laugh, or smile. But even though it is incredibly hard, enamel can still be damaged by unhealthy eating or oral hygiene practices, like chewing on ice or neglecting to brush your teeth every day.
2. Taste Buds
The average person has 10,000 taste buds, the tiny buds on your tongue that help you sense and process flavour in food and other substances. However, you will have much more than 10,000 taste buds over the course of your life. Your body completely replaces them every two weeks. Taste buds also don’t work alone — they need saliva to help them taste food.
Saliva might seem disgusting to you, but it is actually a highly complex part of the mouth and plays a significant role there. Not only is it instrumental in tasting food, but it also is a vital part of helping prevent tooth decay. Saliva helps wash away harmful bacteria so that it doesn’t sit on your enamel all day and eat away at it.
But that doesn’t mean that it’s free of its own bacteria. In fact, one millimetre holds roughly 100 million individual bacteria. Just think about that the next time you swallow. On top of that, the average person produces between one and two litres of saliva every single day.
You may not believe it, but teeth are highly unique. Your teeth and your tongue print are as unique to you as your fingerprints are. Archaeologists can tell an enormous amount of information about the people whose teeth they find. This includes everything from their diet during their life to their age when they died, and sometimes even their cause of death.
Your teeth are actually living bones, and they still have the capacity to grow and shift during your lifetime. However, they are no longer likely to develop significantly after you reach adulthood.
The tongue is a unique part of your mouth for a number of reasons. It is the only muscle in the body that is not attached to your bones in any way. Instead, it is attached to your throat by a slim layer of tissue. But, size being relative, it is the strongest muscle in your body. It might be more fitting to say groups of muscles because the tongue is actually made up of muscle sections designed to help you speak, eat, and push food around in your mouth and towards your throat.