What Are the Parts of the Mouth?

November 2, 2021

Filed under: Uncategorized — dr_donnelly @ 7:54 pm
person sticking out their tongue

Did you know that the average person will spend over two months of their life brushing their teeth? With all that time put into protecting your mouth from harm, wouldn’t it make sense to know what the different parts are and how they work? Read on to learn about the different parts of the mouth and the ways they interact to function properly.


The teeth give shape to a person’s face and allow them to tear and chew food as well as smile. There are four types of teeth, including:

  • Molars –There are 12 of these, four of which are wisdom teeth. They allow you to chew and grind up food.
  • Premolars (bicuspids) – There are eight total and they let you chew and grind up your food.
  • Canines –Canines let you rip and tear food. There are two on the top and two on the bottom of the mouth, and they are the sharpest teeth we have.
  • Incisors – There are eight of these located right in the front of the mouth. They allow you to bite into food.


The tongue is made from eight different muscles, which make it incredibly strong. It has approximately 10,000 taste buds that are replaced every 2 weeks and helps you eat, swallow, speak, and taste.

Lips and Cheeks

The cheeks and lips are made out of connective tissue, skin, and muscles. They let you speak and breathe comfortably, let you make facial expressions, help hold your teeth in place, and keep food and saliva from falling out.

Salivary Glands

The salivary glands are what produce saliva and drain it into the mouth through openings called ducts. Saliva keeps the mouth moist and washes away bacteria and food particles. It also neutralizes acids in the mouth to protect the tooth enamel and allows you to chew, swallow, and speak easily.


The gums protect the tooth roots as well as hold your teeth in place. Though they are vital to keeping your teeth in place, part of the jaw called the alveolar bone is what actually holds your teeth in your mouth.

Temporomandibular Joint

This is a hinge that connects the temporal bones of your skull to your jaw. They let you chew, swallow, speak, and open and close your mouth.

It’s vital to take good care of your mouth so it can continue to function properly. This will let you eat, speak, and laugh your way into a healthy, happy life!

About the Practice

Led by Dr. J. Robert Donnelly, San Marcos Gentle Dental offers patients of all ages a variety of effective treatment options to help them maintain exceptional dental health. They strive to help you maintain good oral hygiene so the various parts of your mouth will continue to function properly and work together in harmony. Are you interested in making an appointment or want more information on how the different parts of the mouth work? Call San Marcos Gentle Dental at (512) 396-5225 or visit their website to get started.

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