Re: Canine Teeth

Louis Marion (
21 Jul 1995 19:04:20 GMT

Lou Mario ( wrote:
: Dave B. recently asked about the canine teeth's functional significance
: in humans and why they are so small as opposed in other mammals.
: Actually they maintain the longest and strongest root in the mouth. They
: function to guide the teeth in to lateral excursions. This function
: termed canine guidance ensures the protection from posterior cusp
: fracture. Being omnivorous, we homo sapiens still need the anterior
: overbite to incise meat, and the sharp posterior cuspal antomy to chew
: cellulose and what not. In order to prevent these posterior cusps from
: wearing, the canines disarticulate the posterior teeth during
: masticatation. Those humans without it rely on group functionwhich
: usually results in increased wear to the posterior cuspal inclines.

: This is a quick summary but I am willing to discuss more or refer you to
: other sources in the literature.

: Sincerely,

: The Dental Anthropologist