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Primary Teeth Permanent Teeth


Develops as a lingual or distal extension of

Develops directly from dental lamina.
dental lamina.

Usually they are not covered with bony crypts. They are completely covered with bony crypts.

All the primary teeth erupt into oral cavity at All the permanent teeth except 3rd molar erupt
the age of 21/2–3 years. For root completion, it into oral cavity at the age of 12–13 years. For
takes 1-11/2 years after eruption.
i.e. Root root completion, it takes 2-3 years after eruption.
formation of primary teeth is completed by 3-4 i.e. Root formation of primary teeth is completed
years of age. by 14-16 years of age.

All primary teeth develop and erupt almost in

the horizontal plane and occupy a more vertical Permanent teeth develop in different planes.
position in the jaws.

Duration of deciduous dentition ranges from Average duration of permanent teeth is about 60
12-14 years (Fig. 31.1). years of life time (Fig. 31.2).

Deciduous teeth are smaller in all dimensions

(about 1/2) than that of corresponding Larger in all dimensions than that of
permanent teeth except deciduous 2nd molar corresponding primary teeth.
(Figs 31.3 to 31.6).

Relation between upper and lower teeth is Relation between upper and lower teeth is
tooth-to-tooth relation. (Edge-to-edge contact) intercuspal relation.

Number of teeth: 20 Premolars are absent.
5 Number of teeth: 32
Premolars are present.
in each quadrant.
2 incisors, 1 canine, 2 in each quadrant.
2 incisors, 1 canine, 2
molars. premolars, 3 molars.
The crown

Lighter in color—bluish white also called as

milk teeth as its refractive index is same as Darker in color—grayish or yellowish white.
milk (1)

The contact areas between molars are broader, The contact areas between molars are situateds
flatter and situated gingivally. occlusally.

Cervical ridges are more pronounced especially

Cervical ridges are more flat.
on the buccal aspect of the first molar.

Cuspids are slender and tend to be more

Cuspids are less conical.

Crowns are wider in mesiodistal dimensions in

Crowns of anterior teeth are larger in cervico-
relation to the cervicoocclusal height. This
occlusal dimensions than the mesiodistal. This
gives a cup shaped appearance to anterior teeth
gives a longer appearance to anterior teeth.
and squat shape to molars.

The enamel is thinner and has a more

The enamel is thicker and has a thickness of
consistent depth of about 1 mm thickness
about 2-3 mm.
throughout the entire crown.

The enamel road at the cervical slopes

The rods are oriented gingivally.
occlusally from the DEJ.

Supplemental grooves are more. Supplemental grooves are less.

Mammelons are present at the incisal edges of

Mammelons are absent.
newly erupted teeth.

Occlusal plane is relatively flat. Occlusal plane has curved contour.

Buccal and lingual surfaces of molars converge

There is less convergence of buccal and lingual
towards occlusal surface so that they have
surfaces of molars towards occlusal surface.
narrow occlusal table in a buccolingual plane.

1st molars are more bulbous and are sharply

They have less constriction of neck.
They are
constricted (bell shaped) cervically.
They are
larger in dimension than 2nd molar.
smaller in dimension than 2nd molar.

Key to memorize:

C – Color, Contact area, Cervical ridge, Cuspids
D – Dimensions
E – Enamel, Enamel rods,
Supplemental grooves, Mammelons. Occlusal plane, Occlusal table, 1st molar.

1. The roots are larger and more slender in 1. The roots are shorter and bulbous in
comparison to crown size. comparison to crown size.

2. Roots of the primary molars are more

2. Roots are less divergent and do not flare to a
divergent and flare outwards as they have to
great degree.
accommodate the permanent tooth bud.

3. Furcation is more towards cervical area so 3. Placement of furcation is apical thus the root
that root trunk is smaller. trunk is larger.

4. Undergo physiologic resorption during

4. Physiologic resorption is absent so position of
shedding of primary teeth so position of apical
apical foramen and length of root canal is fixed.
foramen varies with age.


Pulp volume is large compared to tooth Pulp volume is less compared to tooth volume.

High degree of cellularity and vascularity of Comparatively less degree of cellularity and
tissue at least in stages prior to advanced vascularity in tissue.
physiologic resorption of roots.

High potential for repair. Comparatively less potential for repair.

Pulp outline follows DEJ more closely and Pulp outline doesn’t follow DEJ exactly and pulp
pulp horns are closer to outer surface. horns are away from the outer surface.

No marked cervical constriction between Marked cervical constriction between coronal

coronal pulp and root canal. pulp and root canal.

Comparatively less tooth structure around pulp. More tooth structure surrounding pulp offers
more protection and increases potential for

Greater thickness of dentin over the pulpal wall Lesser thickness of dentine over the pulpal wall
at the occlusal fossa of molars. at the occlusal fossa of molars.

Numbers of dentinal tubules are less. Number of dentinal tubules are more about
50,000–90,000 per mm2.

Root canals are more ribbon-like. Radicular Root canals are well-defined and less branching.
pulp is thin and tortuous.

Floor of pulp is porous and accessory canals Floor of pulp chamber usually doesn't have any
from the floor of pulp chamber leads directly to
inter-radicular furcation. accessory canals.

Nerves terminate at pulpodental junction and Nerves terminals transverse the whole length of
their branches enter the dentinal tubules but dentinal tubules and end in the dentinoenamel
end away from the dentinoenamel junction. junction.

Histological differences

Roots have wider apical foramina, and resultant

Foramina are restricted, and reduced blood
abundant blood supply demonstrates a more
supply favors calcific response.
typical inflammatory response.

Incidence of reparative dentin formation

beneath carious lesion is more extensive and Reparative dentin formation is less.
more irregular.

Localization of infection and inflammation is

Infection and inflammation is usually local.
poorer in pulp.

Pulp nerve fibers pass to the odontoblastic area, Pulp nerve fibers terminate mainly among
where they terminate as free nerve endings. odontoblasts and even beyond the predentin.

Density of innervations is less so primary teeth

are less sensitive to operative procedure. Density of innervations is more, making tooth
Neural tissue degenerated first during root more sensitive to operative procedures.

Dentinoenamel junction is relatively flat. Dentinoenamel junction is scalloped.

Mineral content

Enamel and dentin are less mineralized,

so acid etching time is more for primary More mineralized so acid etching time is less.

Organic content is more. Organic content is less.

Neonatal lines are present. Neonatal lines are present only in 1st permanent molar.

Stria of Retzius are less

common which may be responsible for Stria of Retzius are more common.
bluish white color of enamel.

Tubules are less

Thickness is half than that of
permanent teeth.
Tubules are more regular.
Thickness is double
Dentin forming cells are active than that of deciduous teeth.

functionally for 360 days.
Dentin forming cells are functionally active by 700 days.
dentin is absent.

Interglobular dentin is present.
Dentin is more dense
Dentin is less dense. This can be
and difficult to cut.
observed clinically by resistance offered
by it to bur while cutting. Dentin is cut
more easily and abrades rapidly.

Periodontal ligament

Area of periodontal ligament is less. Area of periodontal ligament is more.

Lamina dura is relatively thick. Lamina dura is relatively thin.


Cementum is very thin and of the primary

Secondary cementum is present.

Alveolar atrophy is rare. Alveolar atrophy occurs.