Explain the process of digestion in the buccal


Explain the process of digestion in the buccal cavity with a note on the arrangement of teeth.


Two functions are performed by the buccal cavity. One is mastication of food which is chewing and another one is swallowing. The food which is eaten by us will be

mixed with saliva and lubricates the food and cheering process breaks the food into smaller pieces. Digestion of carbohydrates starts in the buccal cavity. The food is

mixed with saliva which contains salivary amylase. This enzyme converts starch into maltose, isomaltose and α-dextrins. 30% of the starch in food is hydrolysed in the

buccal cavity.

There are four types of teeth in human beings – incisors, canines, premolars and molars, denoted as I, C, PM and M respectively.

Arrangement of teeth in each half of the upper and lower jaw in the order I, C, PM, M is represented by a dental formula which in human is 2123/2123, two incisors,

one canine, two premolars and three molars on each side of jaws. Thus there are 32 teeth in an adult human.

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