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tooth anatomy - chewing surface

The chewing surface of back teeth is called the OCCLUSAL SURFACE. The occlusal surface is a rough surface with ridges and grooves sort of like small mountains and valleys. These rough surfaces facilitate the chewing process by improving your ability to tear and crush food.

In the photo to the right the:

  • Blue lines represent ridges
  • Green arrows point to grooves
  • Black arrows point to cusp tips
  • Red dots identify pits where grooves join together.