Missing teeth becoming commonplace

There is evidence to suggest an increase in recent years of children not growing all of their adult teeth (hypodontia).

Some studies suggest that this is due to evolution; the shrinking of our jaw and better dental hygiene resulting in no need for "back-ups".

Humankind has experienced many changes to the face, teeth and jaw since the cenozoic era, with changes in diet, cooking and stewing foods and the invention of utensils. Prior to the adaptation of the knife and fork, humans had teeth aligned like a guillotine, with a top layer clashing against the bottom layer. This formation helped to tear off and rip at meat. The overbite we have today is something relatively new. Our ancestors 250 years ago would have looked rather different to how we look today, especially if they were asked to smile for a selfie.

It will be fascinating to see what the future holds with jaws further shrinking and less teeth growing. Future generations might liken us to crocodiles with all our pearly whites and large jaws.



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