Natal teeth occur in about one in every 2,000 to 3,000 births. While rare, they are not usually dangerous but can lead to problems that should be addressed by your pediatrician and dentist. The following guide explains natal teeth in more detail.
A Guide to Natal Teeth
What Are Natal Teeth?
A baby will get their first tooth generally at around six months, but teeth can be present before this time. Neonatal teeth appear about 30 days after birth, and natal teeth are present at birth. The natal teeth are the baby’s regular teeth that have come through early. They look like baby teeth, although may be more yellow and loose in the gums. They usually appear in pairs on the lower gumline, but any configuration, including a full set of teeth, is possible.
Why Was Your Baby Born With Teeth?
Dentists and doctors don’t know exactly why some babies are born with teeth. The suspected causes are heredity or the presence of dental germ cells, which will form in the teeth near the baby’s gums. There are also several rare medical conditions that have been associated with the presence of natal teeth, such as Pfieffer syndrome, Langerhans cell histiocytosis, or Sotos syndrome.
What Are the Risks & Problems of Having Natal Teeth?
One issue for a baby born with teeth is difficulty breastfeeding, as they can make the baby’s mouth sore and can be painful for the mother. The teeth may cause mouth ulcers and pain, which further complicates feeding. Loose natal teeth are also a choking hazard if they become dislodged.
What Should You Do If They Have Natal Teeth?
Most of the time, the natal teeth don’t present a problem and will fall out naturally as permanent teeth come in when they turn six. If your baby does have mouth ulcers, a pediatric dentist can apply resin over sharp points or gently file rough parts of the tooth. Trouble feeding or loose teeth may require removal by a pediatric dentist.
Four Corners Dental Group, located in Wasilla and Anchorage, AK, offers full-service dentistry to Alaska families, including general exams, cleanings, and preventive procedures. Their dentists welcome patients of all ages into their relaxing, state-of-the-art facilities. Patient comfort and education are top priorities in this dental practice. Call (907) 258-3384 to reach the Anchorage office or (907) 376-2790 to speak to the Wasilla office. Visit their website to learn more about their services.