Teeth touching together

Are Your Front Teeth Supposed To Touch?

Our teeth perform several important functions in our daily lives beyond just helping us eat and giving us a great smile. While you are eating and smiling are your front teeth supposed to touch each other?

The short answer is that it depends on a few factors.

It depends on what you’re doing with your mouth at the time. Sometimes it’s appropriate for your front teeth to touch each other, and other times it isn’t.

Let’s explore the key scenarios further to understand when your front teeth should be touching each other, and when they shouldn’t.

Should your front teeth touch when resting?

If you’re sitting upright, resting comfortably then your front teeth (and the rest of your teeth) should not be touching.

Think about it the next time you’re sitting and watching TV.

Resting comfortable

Your lower jaw will sit relaxed, separating your teeth.

Unless you’re sitting with your jaw clenched which would probably feel quite odd.

So if your teeth and jaw are positioned normally then your teeth will not be touching while you rest.

Should your front teeth touch when chewing?

When you’re biting into something or chewing it’s normal for your teeth to touch at some point.

The front teeth when biting down or the back teeth when chewing.

This is how your teeth actually cut through the food you’re eating when your bite is correct.

Eating and chewing food

Imagine you’re using a knife to cut through a piece of steak against a chopping board. If you didn’t have the chopping board, it would be much harder to slice the steak because there’s nothing to pin the steak in place to allow the knife to slice through it.

It’s a similar concept with your teeth.

Your top and bottom teeth hold food in place, and help to cut through the food you’re eating before you swallow.

Should your front teeth touch when speaking?

No your front teeth (or any of your teeth) should not touch when you are speaking.

We use out teeth to help form the sounds required for clear speech.

Speaking without teeth touching

This means your teeth and your tongue will touch very frequently while you’re speaking, however your teeth should never be touching.

If they were to touch while speaking you’d probably hear a lot of strange clacking sounds as you talk because your upper and lower teeth would be constantly knocking or grinding against each other.

What should I do if my teeth are touching when they’re not meant to?

If you’ve read through the sections above and have just realised…

  1. My teeth are touching when I rest
  2. My teeth are touching when I speak
  3. My teeth aren’t touching when I chew

…then you need to visit an orthodontist.

It’s important not to try to self-diagnose which is why a specialist orthodontist will be able to give you a clinical explanation as to what’s happening with your teeth.

If it’s identified that you do in fact have some kind of orthodontic issue which needs to be corrected, the orthodontist will be able to recommend an appropriate treatment plan to correct the dental challenge.

It’s important not to try to self-diagnose which is why a specialist orthodontist will be able to give you a clinical explanation as to what’s happening with your teeth.

The majority of orthodontic issues can be solved simply by using braces so there’s no need to be concerned if the orthodontist does find that there is correction that needs to occur.

Take care of your teeth

As you can see your teeth play a critical role in so many things aside from just smiling for photos, so it’s important to make sure you’re taking care of them.

Maintaining good oral hygiene is always the first step towards success, and of course making sure your teeth are properly aligned for optimal function will ensure long term comfort and health of your teeth.

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