Taking your child to the dentist at an early age can help protect their baby teeth against cavities. That’s right: Even though they’re going to fall out, baby teeth are important. They’re like a child’s “practice teeth” until their permanent teeth emerge. Parents looking for the best family dentist in Eagle River, AK, can turn to Discovery Dental. This dental clinic offers preventative care in a relaxing atmosphere, as well as education for parents to help them maintain their children’s oral health.
Baby Teeth Development
Baby teeth, also called primary teeth, begin to develop beneath the gums during the second trimester of pregnancy. They emerge after birth, when the child is around six months to one year old. By the age of three, a child will have their complete set of 20 baby teeth. These will then be pushed out of the way when they reach the age of six, as this is when their permanent adult teeth usually start coming in.
Functions Of Baby Teeth
Baby teeth may be temporary, but they play a critical role in a child’s oral and general health. They promote proper chewing of food, which is essential for nutritious eating. They also help with speech production by facilitating correct syllable pronunciation.
Moreover, primary teeth are placeholders for a child’s permanent teeth. They maintain the proper spacing and alignment of the gums and jaw until the permanent ones are ready to erupt. Good oral hygiene should be established as early as possible to protect baby teeth from decay.
Caring For A Child’s Baby Teeth
Oral care can be started even before the eruption of the primary teeth. You can clean your infant’s gums using a damp washcloth or a toothbrush designed for babies. Once the baby teeth arrive, you can help your child brush their teeth and then teach them to do it themselves.
Cavities in baby teeth may cause spacing problems for emerging permanent teeth. To prevent oral problems, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends scheduling a child’s first dental visit no later than their first birthday or when the first tooth appears, whichever comes first. For great dental care for kids in Eagle River, schedule an appointment with a dentist from Discovery Dental. Call the office at (907) 622-5437, or visit their website for more information.