Shark Teeth and Our Teeth

The mouths of sharks are incredible, but not something you want to see too close up. If you’ve seen photos before or perhaps a skeletal representation in a museum, you know they have many rows of teeth. They have anywhere from five to 50 rows of teeth depending on the species. But, did you know they are constantly losing teeth and growing new ones? In fact, they usually lose at least one tooth per week. This sometimes happens during hunting, as they can get stuck in prey or break off during the process. Some sharks go through 30,000 teeth in their lifetime!

Scientists find understanding the process of regenerating teeth in sharks to be vital to research into human tooth loss. A study recently identified the genes that allow for sharks to lose and grow new teeth constantly throughout their life and found that humans also possess these genes. They believe over time, evolution reduced these specialized cells in humans, allowing for only two sets of teeth to be grown.

Tooth loss is actually very common in humans. On average, five teeth are lost between the ages of 20 and 64. Not only can this make you feel self-conscious or embarrassed, but it can also make eating and speaking difficult. Going any significant length of time without a tooth also leads to bone loss in the jaw due to lack of stimulation. This can alter the shape of your jaw, position of your other teeth and even the structure of your face.

Thankfully, advanced dental technology has perfected the art of replacing lost teeth all the way down to the root. Dental implants look natural and have a success rate close to 100%. If you’re missing a tooth or several teeth, find out more information on our page, Dental Implants or give our office a call at (972) 278-9901.