Baby Teeth Matter
Baby teeth might not seem that important - after all they are only in your baby’s mouth for a few short years! - but they are just as important as all of our adult teeth. At Smile Kids! Pediatric Dentistry your child’s new teeth are even more important to us, so here are some fast facts about why baby teeth matter so much to your child’s health.
What Do Baby Teeth Do?
Baby teeth are important for a lot of reasons. Having healthy chompers makes it easier for your child to learn important tasks like biting, chewing, as well as learning to sing and speak. But baby teeth also save space in the gums for their permanent teeth. And as your child grows, a mouthful of missing or misshapen teeth can have serious effects on their self-esteem. Pain can also make it difficult for them to focus, especially at school.
Tooth Decay Starts Immediately
As soon as your child’s first tooth comes in, it is at risk for decay. And if left unchecked, that decay can cause infections and spread to nearby teeth - or even to their permanent teeth. Every time your child eats or drinks they’re at risk of tooth decay, and if your child likes to sip on sugary drinks or falls asleep with a bottle in their mouth, then they are at a greater risk for decay as their teeth are exposed for longer periods of time. Since baby teeth are so much smaller than permanent teeth, cavities can spread quickly through the enamel. Pain caused by decay in one tooth can very quickly, and easily, infect other teeth if not treated with dental fillings.
What Happens if My Child Loses a Tooth Prematurely?
If they’re all just going to fall out anyway, is it really such a big deal if one falls out early? Yes! If a baby tooth isn’t saving space in the gums for the permanent tooth to develop, then the surrounding teeth can move around and come out of alignment. When they start to come in, there may not be adequate room, forcing them to grow in crooked, misaligned, and overcrowded. This can make it easier for your child to get cavities or gum disease later on in life.
How to Care for Baby Teeth
The biggest thing you can do is not delay your child’s first visit to a pediatric dentist. However, there are also plenty of other things you can do at home to make sure that when your child does come in they’re already on the right track. Your child should be brushing as soon as their first tooth erupts, and even before this you can get them accustomed to the sensation by wiping their gums and tongue with a moist gauze pad.
Start Protecting Their Teeth Today!
Healthy baby teeth play an extremely important role when it comes to your child growing up with an adorable smile. At Smile Kids! Pediatric Dentistry, our team is ready and waiting to help give you the advice, tips and tools you need to protect your baby’s oral health.
Call us today at (276) 663-0065 to schedule an appointment to get your child's teeth checked!