The Permanent Dentition
The situation of the permanent dentition is discussed here only within the confines of the description of the final stage of the development of the dentition. Emphasis is placed in this respect on those facets of the permanent dentition that are thought to be able to clarify the preceding development. For information regarding the occlusion of the individual teeth, their function, and the physiology of the masticatory system, refer to appropriate textbooks.*
The position of the individual teeth in the permanent dentition, the relation between the dental arches, the occlusion and, in part, the spatial orientation are indicated in Figure 7-1.
Fig. 7-1 Survey of the situation in the normal permanent dentition.
A All adjacent maxillary teeth contact each other. Together, they form a harmoniously shaped dental arch. The maxillary teeth occlude slightly buccally with the mandibular ones. A small overjet is present in the incisor region.
B All adjacent mandibular teeth contact each other as well and together form a harmoniously shaped dental arch on which the maxillary one fits. All mandibular teeth make contact with two opposing maxillary ones, with the exception of the mandibular central incisors.
C The maxillary lateral incisors are shorter than the central ones, which in turn are exceeded in length by the canines. The incisal edges of the maxillary lateral incisors are slightly superior to those of the central ones and to the cusp tips of the canines. The roots of the maxillary lateral incisors are distally angulated, as are those of the central ones, but to a lesser extent. The incisal edges of the four mandibular incisors are in one plane. The cusp tips of the mandibular canines extend somewhat superiorly to that plane. The roots of the mandibular lateral incisors are slightly distally angulated. The mandibular lateral incisor is longer than the central one. The former, in turn, is shorter than the canine.