den·​tal | \ˈden-tᵊl \

Definition of dental 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of or relating to the teeth or dentistry

2 : articulated with the tip or blade of the tongue against or near the upper front teeth



Definition of dental (Entry 2 of 2)

: a dental consonant

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Other Words from dental


dentally \ -​ē \ adverb

Examples of dental in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Partially, that’s because victims might have dental X-rays but not personal DNA profiles. Jennifer Peltz, The Seattle Times, "Identifying wildfire dead: DNA, and likely older methods too," 14 Nov. 2018 The technology, which already has transformed production of hearing aids and dental implants, is entering industries including aerospace, energy and transportation for complex components. Daniel Michaels, WSJ, "Design Your Frames: 3-D Printing Comes to Eyewear," 11 Nov. 2018 If that’s the reaction to an effort to improve dental health, just imagine the public outcry against a major push for adding lithium to the water. Dylan Matthews, Vox, "How our drinking water could help prevent suicide," 24 Oct. 2018 In this case, they’re preserved in the dental calculus (the technical term for really, really old plaque) of people who lived and died centuries ago on Rapa Nui. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "How did Easter Islanders survive without wells or streams?," 17 Oct. 2018 At treatment centers like Family First, patients generally fall into two groups: Women like Donna who started pain medication for a physical ailment like dental surgery, a cesarean section, or back pain, and women who were addicted to heroin. Hayley Krischer, Marie Claire, "How Heroin Came for Middle-Class Moms," 20 Aug. 2018 If dry mouth isn't the problem, have your dentist do a thorough checkup to rule out any dental health issues, like gum disease, which Boghosian says can be caused by plaque. Samantha Lefave, Redbook, "Why You Should Never Ignore Sweet-Smelling Urine (or These Other Body Odors)," 3 Aug. 2018 But other provisions of the plan are also expected to drive up spending, with coverage for nearly 30 million uninsured Americans, no copays and no deductibles and improved benefits on dental, vision and hearing. Brooke Singman, Fox News, "Bernie Sanders' 'Medicare for all' bill estimated to cost $32.6T, new study says," 31 July 2018 According to the company's website, Kuraray America, Inc. produces dental, fiber, resin and elastomer products. Keri Blakinger, Houston Chronicle, "Fire, explosion at Pasadena chemical plant," 19 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Some companies offer benefits like health and dental insurance and a matching 401(k) plan. Mary Hunt, Woman's Day, "8 Easy Ways to Make Money Online," 12 June 2018 These clinics — which provide preventive care and dental services to about 27 million low-income Americans — also enjoy mandatory spending status. Washington Post, "The Health 202: How the government shutdown could affect your health care (or not)," 22 Jan. 2018 The premiere presents two dentists who raised alarms about a pediatric dental chain. Hal Boedeker,, "'Jonestown: An American Tragedy,' Sacha Baron Cohen: This weekend," 13 July 2018 Vi’s generous employee benefits include comprehensive health, dental, vision, life, disability and 401(k) match. azcentral, "Top Companies to Work for in Arizona 2018-Large Companies," 7 June 2018 In 2014, the board passed a resolution for salaries and benefits for trustees that included medical and hospitalization insurance and dental and vision insurance. Christina Hall, Detroit Free Press, "Indicted Macomb Twp. trustee Bucci no-show at meetings, still gets paid," 21 May 2018 Jones was pronounced dead at the scene and was identified by the medical examiner through dental records, according to the statement. Justin Wm. Moyer, Washington Post, "Driver killed in fiery Wilson Bridge tractor-trailer crash identified," 25 June 2018 Under Temple’s guidelines, doctors are discouraged from dispensing opioids to patients with acute or chronic dental or back pain, migraines, or chronic abdominal pain, and won’t prescribe opioids to patients who run out of pain meds. Aubrey Whelan,, "How the opioid crisis is changing how Philadelphia emergency room doctors care for patients," 29 May 2018 Some companies offer benefits like health and dental insurance and a matching 401(k) plan. Mary Hunt, Woman's Day, "8 Ways to Make Money Online," 3 Mar. 2015

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'dental.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of dental


1594, in the meaning defined at sense 1


circa 1727, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for dental


Latin dentalis, from dent-, dens

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Dictionary Entries near dental






dental floss

dental hygienist

Statistics for dental

Last Updated

17 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dental

The first known use of dental was in 1594

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More Definitions for dental



English Language Learners Definition of dental

: of or relating to teeth or to the work dentists do


den·​tal | \ˈden-tᵊl \

Kids Definition of dental

: relating to the teeth or dentistry


den·​tal | \ˈdent-ᵊl \

Medical Definition of dental 

1 : relating to, specializing in, or used in dentistry dental surgery dental students

2 : relating to or used on the teeth dental paste

Other Words from dental

dentally \ -​ē \ adverb

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