This illustration shows the anatomy of a tooth and gums as well as the supporting structures that surround a tooth. The left side shows healthy gums and bones and the right side shows unhealthy supporting structures.
Not all teeth have one root. For example: the molars on the top arch have three roots, whereas, the molars on the bottom arch have two roots.
Glossary of Terms:
Blood vessels - carry nutrients to the tooth.
Bone - alveolar bone forms the tooth socket and provides it with support.
Cementum - the layer of hard bone-like tissue covering the root of the tooth.
Cemento-enamel junction - the line where the enamel and cementum meet.
Dentin - the hard yellow tissue underlying the enamel and cementum, making up the main bulk of the tooth.
Enamel - the hard, white outer layer of the tooth.
Gingiva - the gum tissue surrounding the tooth.
Ligament - the connective tissue that surrounds the tooth and connects it to bone.
Nerves - relay signals such as pain to and from your brain.
Pulp - located in the center of the tooth, it contains the arteries, veins and nerves.
Root canal - canal in the root of the tooth where the nerves and blood vessels travel through.