Teeth Numbers and Names: A First Step in Understanding Your Treatment Plan

If you’re new to the dental world, or just want a refresher on teeth numbers and names, this guide is for you. This article will walk you through the basics of dental anatomy, teeth numbers, and different teeth names used in the US and Mexico.

Teeth numbers and Teeth Names Chart

Surveys show that most patients have difficulty understanding one of the most significant documents they are likely to encounter in the course of treatment – their dentist’s treatment plan. The treatment plans are presented based on ADA codes and abbreviated procedure names, not it layman terms you can understand. Unless someone in the clinic explains it thoroughly, it’s a struggle.

We want to help you take charge of your own dental care. So let’s start at the fundamentals – teeth numbers and names.

Teeth Numbers Chart

Most of us know the basic tooth names, such as molar, incisor, or wisdom tooth. At the dental clinic, human teeth are identified by their numbers and each teeth are named differently.

As shown in Fig. 1 above, the ADA teeth numbering system treats the permanent 32 teeth in a clockwise fashion as seen by your dentist. Teeth numbers 1 – 16 are on the upper jaw, also known as the maxillary arch. Teeth number 17 up to teeth number 32 are in the lower jaw, also known as the mandibular arch. Check this printable teeth universal numbering system below.

Teeth Numbers Chart Divided into 4 Quadrants
Figure 1. Teeth numbers and names diagram. The human teeth is composed of 16 upper teeth and 16 lower teeth. They are also divided into four quadrants.Have you ever struggled reading your dental treatment plan from your local dentist? Sometimes, it feels like deciphering a difficult table from a college statistics book.

As an example, teeth numbers 1, 16, 17, and 32 are your wisdom teeth. Teeth numbers 14 and 15 are your upper left molars. If you are getting cosmetic dentistry using veneers, you usually want to enhance the most visible part, teeth numbers 6 – 11 on the upper and 22 – 26 on the lower. For movie fans, vampires can extend their eye teeth (canines): 6, 11, 22 and 27.

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Teeth Numbers and Names

Looking at the accompanying teeth chart by numbers above (Figure 1), let’s outline their names. Remember, these teeth numbers chart is from the point of view of the dentist or someone looking at you. So just reverse it when you are feeling the tooth in your mouth.

Tooth Numbering and Names, Organized Clockwise from the Point of View of the Dentist:

Upper Right Quadrant
Teeth Numbers Teeth Names
8 Incisor (Central)
7 Incisor (Lateral)
6 Canine (Eye tooth / Cuspid)
5 Bicuspid (1st)
4 Bicuspid (2nd)
3 Molar (1st Molar)
2 Molar (2nd Molar)
1 Wisdom Tooth (3rd Molar)
Upper Left Quadrant
Teeth Numbers Teeth Names
9 Incisor (Central)
10 Incisor (Lateral)
11 Canine (Eye tooth / Cuspid)
12 Bicuspid (1st)
13 Bicuspid (2nd)
14 Molar (1st Molar)
15 Molar (2nd Molar)
16 Wisdom Tooth (3rd Molar)
Lower Right Quadrant
Teeth Numbers Teeth Names
32 Wisdom Tooth (3rd Molar)
31 Molar (2nd Molar)
30 Molar (1st Molar)
29 Bicuspid (2nd)
28 Bicuspid (1st)
27 Canine (Eye tooth / Cuspid)
26 Incisor (Lateral)
25 Incisor (Central)
Lower Left Quadrant
Teeth Numbers Teeth Names
17 Wisdom Tooth (3rd Molar)
18 Molar (2nd Molar)
19 Molar (1st Molar)
20 Bicuspid (2nd)
21 Bicuspid (1st)
22 Canine (Eye tooth / Cuspid)
23 Incisor (Lateral)
24 Incisor (Central)

So that’s a handy guide for understanding the human teeth numbers and names. In future posts we’ll be looking at, and demystifying, other aspects of a dental treatment plan that may be hard for the lay person to understand.

Having difficulty understanding your treatment plan? Post your questions below.

Teeth numbers chart | human teeth numbering system

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