Is a tooth alive? Well a tooth cannot walk around by itself and reproduce like any other living being. In addition, a tooth cannot develop by itself if it is not inside a living body. But a tooth, like any other organ, has a supply of nerves and blood vessels. This blood flow helps the tooth grow and mature before it emerges in the mouth.
The hard tissue covering a tooth is called enamel. It is made of crystals of calcium phosphate (hydroxyapatite), the hardest substance in the body. There are also some types of protein, but enamel does not contain any living cells. That’s why, unlike most body tissues, enamel has no way to regenerate itself.
Dentin, which is located under the enamel, is also a hard tissue consisting of crystals of calcium phosphate. Although weaker than enamel, it contains more organic matter, but may still not regenerate itself.
The pulp is the central part of a tooth, and contains nerves and blood vessels. The organic part was useful during the growth of the tooth. The nerves serve to cause pain, which warns the presence of danger (cavity or infection).
When a tooth has completed its development and is in its usual position on the jaw, it doesn’t need nerves and blood vessels to remain functional. That is why a tooth that has had a root canal can remain in a person’s mouth for a lifetime and play its purpose of chewing, eating and speaking.
A tooth is made of hard tissue that can not regenerate. But the dental pulp allows the growth of a tooth and the nerves later serve to warn against danger. A tooth can therefore be considered as alive. But if it undergoes a root canal, it will no longer be alive, but can still stay in the mouth and remain functional.
The information above should be used as a reference only. Any medical decision should not be taken before consulting a health care professional.
The masculine gender may have been more used in the article, but without prejudice, to make reading easier.
Category: questions and answers
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