Canines are also called cuspid. They are called canines because they resemblance in shape to the dog teeth. Another name is eye teeth especially for the maxillary canines. Canines are present both in the primary as well as the permanent dentition. Humans have four canine teeth, two in each jaw.
They are located symmetrically around the middle line and exist between the incisors and the first molars. They are called cuspids because they each have a rounded tip or cusp. The canines possess the longest roots of the human teeth, which can, in cases, be as long as three centimeters. Each canine possesses a single root. On the external end, they project slightly beyond the line of other teeth. This gives the canine the strength to bear the high lateral pressure exerted on it during tearing and chewing. Their primary function is holding for tearing, but also help in guiding the food back to the molars. Upper canines are somewhat broader than the lower canines.
The canines are also important for aesthetic reasons. Therefore, care is taken to avoid extracting or disturbing the normal position of the canines during an orthodontic treatment. in fact, the prime focus of an orthodontic treatment is to restore the normal position of the canines within the oral cavity.