Understanding Dental Jargon: How Do Dentists Name Teeth?

This guide explains how dentists name teeth using Universal Numbering System Capital letters A to T for primary teeth & numbers 1 to 32 for permanent teeth.

Understanding Dental Jargon: How Do Dentists Name Teeth?

When you sit in your dentist's office chair, do you ever feel confused? Do you hear the dentist and staff talk, but don't understand what they're saying? Dental terminology is almost your own language, with many unique terms and numbers released by professionals. You want to understand what they say about your teeth, right? Here's a guide to understanding dental jargon, especially what the numbers discussed mean.Universal Numbering System Capital letters A to T are used for primary teeth and numbers 1 to 32 are used for permanent teeth. The tooth designated 1 is the upper right third molar (wisdom tooth) and counting continues along the upper teeth to the left side. Here are more numbers and illustrations of teeth to help you describe the location that your dentist is concerned about.

Very often in the United Kingdom, the Palmer notation method is used, which is named after Dr. Corydon Palmer, a dentist from Ohio.Use a simple system to represent the quadrant in the mouth and whether it is up, down, left or right. It is always indicated by the PATIENTS on the left and right, never by the person sitting in front of the patient and looking. When you're sitting in the dentist's chair, the last thing you expect is to hear the word quadrant.

When dental staff use this term, they don't talk about equations or formulas. It's an expression about the parts of the mouth.


divide the inside of the mouth into four sections or quadrants.The upper parts of the mouth are the first two quadrants, while the lower parts are the third and fourth. Therefore, the upper right of the inside of the mouth is quadrant one (that is the right side), while the upper left is quadrant two.

The background is a little more confusing. While the upper part numbers the right side first, it is the opposite for the lower part.The lower left is quadrant three and the lower right is quadrant four. From the dentist's perspective, they look up and down inside your mouth. It is easier to list quadrants so that the section under quadrant two is quadrant three.Gum disease is one of the most common problems dentists see.

They have developed abbreviated terminology to define gum health. One of the measures they will use to measure the gums is the space between the gum pocket and the nearby tooth. Each of your teeth will receive a number for its space between the gums. Dentists measure this distance in millimeters.As a patient, you'll want to hear a smaller number.

This means that you have a smaller space between the tooth and the gum, a sign that your mouth is healthy. A higher number indicates that you have gum problems, such as plaque and tartar buildup. When your distance indicates that your gums are 1 to 3 millimeters in diameter, what they really say is that you have healthy gums.It's a sign that you brush and floss regularly, usually taking great care of your teeth. Patients with this type of space between their teeth and gums are likely to have spent some time between dental cleanings.

Inflammation occurs naturally in such situations. Your dentist may even warn you that you are at the first signs of periodontal disease or possible bone loss.You will probably have a checkup to see if your gums bleed easily. A gum number of five millimeters or more is a problem. Your dentist will almost certainly tell you to get a deep clean.

The hope is that cleaning will remove buildup between the tooth and the gum.Other possible causes include tooth breakage or gum loss. In extreme situations, a person with this level of buildup will need corrective surgery, although the dentist will generally prefer to try minor treatments first.The first thing to keep in mind is that dentists use a numbering system. So the right upper teeth start with the number “1” (i.e., You May Not Have All These Teeth). For example, tooth 48 is a wisdom tooth, one that dentists often remove to improve overall health of mouth.The upper half of mouth has lower numbers; these are teeth 11-17 and 21-27 on dental chart.

However, numbering system has second purpose; it also identifies what type of tooth being discussed. With this information, dentists can quickly note which teeth have problems that need correction.As an example, chip second molar in quadrant four would be shown as tooth 47 on graph. Wisdom teeth eighth tooth in each quadrant; they are numbers 18, 28, 38 and 48 respectively.Now in its 29th year, Canada's Best-Managed Companies remain one of nation's top business awards programs that recognize Canadian-owned and managed companies for their innovative, world-class business practices. Our passion driven by values we use every day guide our decision-making and interactions with patients, team members, providers and communities which we live and work.Stay tuned for upcoming promotions, events and items; fill fields form below we will respond within one business day.ADA tooth numbering system represents upper and lower teeth each arch clockwise direction; upper teeth numbered 1 to 16 from right to left lower teeth numbered 17 to 32 from left to right; thus 1,16,17 32 would refer wisdom teeth 6-11 22-26 anterior teeth upper lower jaws respectively.Similarly 6,11 22 27 would be canines etc.; if performing cosmetic dentistry veneers generally want highlight most visible part teeth numbers 6-11 top 22-26 bottom.He has very special interest dental implants Invisalign six-month smiles cosmetic dentistry smile changes complicated restorative cases management...

Morris Delucian
Morris Delucian

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