Posts for tag: Baby Teeth

NationalChildrensDentalHealthMonthHighlightsImportanceofBabyTeeth

We all know that a child's baby teeth don't last forever. So if those little teeth develop problems, like severe decay, chips or cracks, it doesn't much matter—right? Wrong! National Children's Dental Health Month, observed in February, is the perfect occasion to remember why baby teeth need the same meticulous care as adult teeth:

  • Baby teeth perform the exact same jobs adult teeth do, only in little mouths. Without healthy teeth, a child can't eat comfortably, speak properly or smile with confidence. Given that the last baby tooth doesn't fall out until around age 12, children need to rely on these "temporary" teeth for a long time!
  • While there often are no symptoms of early tooth decay, badly decayed baby teeth can become painful—and the problem may get worse quickly. Untreated tooth decay can lead to suffering and expense that could have been avoided with relatively simply dental treatment.
  • Baby teeth help guide adult teeth into the right position. Each baby tooth helps hold the right amount of space open for the next tooth that will grow in. When a baby tooth is lost before the permanent replacement is ready to grow in, orthodontic problems can result.

As you can see, good dental health has a big impact on a child's quality of life and health—in both the present and the future. That's why it's important to treat childhood dental disease and injuries promptly and properly. Regular dental exams are the best way to keep on top of your child's dental health. If a cavity is discovered at a routine exam, prompt treatment can keep the decay from spreading to the root canals.

If your child plays sports, ask us about a custom-made mouthguard. This small device can protect your child's teeth from serious injury.  And if a baby tooth does get knocked out, let us know. It may be best to fit your child with a very small dental device called a space maintainer, which will hold that empty space open until the permanent tooth beneath it grows in.

If you would like more information about children's dental health, please contact us or schedule an appointment a consultation. You can also learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Importance of Baby Teeth.”

By The Smile Shack
February 19, 2016
Category: Oral Health
Tags: Baby Teeth  

It can be tempting to treat baby teeth like Kleenex. They're disposable, so why should you take care of them?

However...

These little choppers, also known as primary teeth, are more important than you may think.

For one thing, they reserve space for the permanent “adult teeth,” helping to guide them into position. When baby teeth are lost early, due to decay or injury, permanent teeth can drift into that extra space where they don’t belong. It's like when it snows and you clear out your parking spot and save your spot by putting a lawn chair there. Without that chair, you just might find your neighbor's Buick in your spot! Adult teeth are sneaky like that and can move into space if there's no baby tooth holding the spot.

Decayed or damaged baby teeth can also result in crooked and overcrowded permanent teeth. They are important in the development of speech, and forming the proper facial shape as well.

When a baby tooth gets decayed or infected, it can damage the permanent tooth developing underneath. Be sure your child avoids too many sugary drinks and sticky foods, and help them to brush frequently. Remember – it’s not just sodas and sports drinks. Even healthy drinks such as juice and milk are full of sugar. Of course seeing the dentist for regular check-ups and cleanings is important for decay prevention.

Dr. Jeff suggests that babies come in to the office as soon as the first teeth erupt. Even if it’s just for a ride in the dental chair and a quick brushing, getting your child accustomed to the dentist goes a long way!

So now you know why it's important to take care of those baby teeth! It's also a good idea to encourage kids to learn how to take care of their teeth early on, and hopefully those good habits will carry on into adulthood.



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