Maxillary central incisor

Like the mandibular central incisor, the maxillary central incisor is the closest tooth to the midline of the jaw. A newly erupted maxillary central incisor contains three bumps called the mamelons, and these bumps are known as the mesial, central and distal mamelons. 

The mamelons can be found on the incisal edge. The incisal edge is located centrally to the root when looking from the mesial or distal surfaces. The mamelons disappear in a few weeks after the tooth has erupted as they wear off. The presence of the mamelons in older people can be a sign either of malocclusion or an anterior open bite.

The maxillary central incisor presents with a more rounded distoincisal angle than the mesioincisal angle, and this tooth is slightly larger mesiodistally than it is labiolingually. The facial contour shaped by the mesiobuccal and distobuccal line angles greatly influence the aesthetics of these teeth.

The height of the contour of the maxillary central incisor is as follows:

  • Mesial - incisal third;
  • Distal - between incisal and middle third;
  • Labial (facial) - cervical third;
  • Palatal - closer to the cervical line.

It has a slightly flat mesial surface, which tapers from the height of the contour towards the cervical line and is almost continuous with the root. The outline of the distal surface is more rounded and, in contrast, is not continuous with the root. This characteristic results in a concavity or notch at the cervical area.

The labial (facial) surface contains two developmental grooves known as the mesial developmental groove and distal developmental groove. They can be found approximately in the incisal third. Both grooves improve the aesthetical look of the tooth and, at the same time, separate three lobes. These lobes are called the mesial, central and distal lobes.

The palatal surface presents with a cingulum at the cervical area. It is slightly displaced to the distal surface. The rest of the palatal surface is concave. 

From the cingulum towards the incisal edge go two ridges. These ridges are known as the marginal ridges, and depending on which surface (mesial or distal) is located closer to them, they are called the mesial and distal marginal ridges. The mesial marginal ridge is slightly longer than the distal marginal ridge.

Each maxillary central incisor also presents a lingual fossa, defined by the margins of the cingulum, marginal ridges and incisal edge.

The cervical line on the distal surface is less curved towards the incisal edge than on the mesial surface.

The root of this tooth is distinctly triangular, and it has a wide and flat labial surface, while the palatal surface is narrow. The apex of the root is rounded. Overall, the root of the maxillary central incisor is straight.