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Shark tooth dental facts, shark smiling

It’s everyone’s favorite week of the year: Shark Week!

Some sharks can have up to 50,000 teeth over the course of their entire lives. So, in honor of our grinning friends, we have decided to grace you with 50,000 shark facts.

Okay, yes, that was a joke. But how does five sound?

1. Some sharks can have up to 50,000 teeth during their lifetime

Now, we know what you’re thinking, “you just said that.” Yes, but this one is crazy! No, they don’t have all these teeth at the same time. But, depending on the type of shark, they can have up to 300 teeth during different stages of their life. A shark tooth is not very strong and can fall out easily. Their teeth do not have roots. Some sharks can lose their teeth in as little as a week. That’s why it’s so easy to find them on beaches. Unlike humans, sharks can easily replace their lost teeth with new ones. They can be self-conscious when they talk with a missing tooth so they have to find a way to replace them as fast as possible.

2. Many sharks have layers of teeth

On average, sharks have 15 rows of teeth in each jaw. Most only have about five. But the bull shark is no match for these. They have up to 50 rows of teeth with 7 teeth in each row. That averages to about 350 teeth at one time. That’s one bull we don’t want to mess with.

3. The largest shark tooth is was 7 5/8″

The owner of this tooth? The Megladon Monster. The largest shark to ever exist. It’s four largest teeth measured in at over seven inches. The Megladon was 70 feet and 70,000 pounds. A 7 1/4″ tooth was found in a coastal river bed in South Carolina by Vito Bertucci. Imagine seeing it swim by you and your friends while enjoying a day at the beach… no, thank you!

4. Their upper and lower jaws move

Unlike most animals on the planet, sharks’ upper and lower jaws move. Most animals’ upper jaw is attached to its skull. But for sharks, their upper jaw rests below their skull so it can detach when it attacks its prey. Because of this, sharks can thrusts their entire mouth forward when attacking.

5. They have different shaped teeth depending on their diet

Not all sharks have enormous pointy teeth. While a shark that hunts for fish and sea lions may have large, scary teeth, other smaller sharks may have a filtering system. They still have smaller rows of teeth but they are usually not used for chewing. Their mouths are a lot like a whale’s mouth. They use their teeth to filter through things rather than chew.

 

So, now every time you sing “Baby Shark” remember, just because she’s a grandma shark does not mean she is a gummy shark.

But, unlike sharks, we humans have our teeth for life. So, take care of your teeth. Visit ProGrin Dental or call any of our offices and we would be happy to give you more shark facts.