Basic facts about your child’s teeth

Did you know that your child’s teeth begin forming before they are even born?

This article was written by Adelaide Quality Dental's own Oral Health Therapist, Olivia.

This article was written by Adelaide Quality Dental’s own Oral Health Therapist, Olivia.

You can expect the first baby tooth to come through the gum (also known as primary teeth) as early as four months old. For most children all 20 baby teeth are generally present by the age of three.

However, don’t be alarmed if this is not the case with your child, as the timing and sequence of tooth eruption (eruption is dental speak for the tooth growing out of the gum) may vary as is often the case with adult teeth as well.

A mixture of baby and adult teeth

In most cases a child’s first adult tooth will begin to appear around their 6th birthday. Naturally as their adult teeth appear then it is also this age (approximately) that your child will also begin to lose their baby teeth.

This is known as the “mixed dentition” stage and will continue until the child is approximately 13 years of age (excluding their wisdom teeth), by which point all their adult teeth will be present.

Why is it important to look after my child’s baby teeth?

Some of you may be thinking, “Well if my child is only going to lose their baby teeth – why is it so important to look after them?”

Well here are our top 5 reasons to take good care of your child’s baby teeth:

  1. You want your child to begin to develop appropriate and healthy oral hygiene habits and routines from an early age, so that they understand the importance of looking after their teeth and take these lessons forward with their adult teeth.
  2. Decay (also referred to as caries) is a disease. It can cause infection if left untreated, which can in turn cause further health complications.
  3. Early Childhood Caries (defined as the presence of one or more decayed primary teeth in a child aged 6 years or younger) is still considered the single most common chronic disease of childhood.
  4. Early Childhood Caries can cause long term growth and developmental implications, with the potential to influence a child’s growth rate, body weight and ability to thrive.
  5. Research has shown that decay in adult teeth is more likely to occur if the child experienced decay in their baby teeth.
Part of looking after your childrens teeth is finding the right dentist, and knowing what to do next if they have a dental emergency. Adelaide Quality Dental are here to help.

If your child loses a tooth whilst playing sport or otherwise please check our Dental Emergency advice article on what you should do.

What age should my child have their first dental check-up?

It is highly recommended that your child visit the dentist by their first birthday. This may be a surprise to many who feel this is too young. So why should your child have their first dental check-up so early on in life?

  • Preventative dental visits from an early age lay the foundation for a lifetime of good dental health. The Dentist or Oral Health Therapist (OHT) can provide parents and their children with educational advice regarding the child’s oral health to prevent future caries.
  • It’s important to diagnose caries sooner, rather than later. The longer caries are left undiagnosed, the more damaging they will become.
  • You want your child to become familiar with the dental environment. Each time the child visits the dental practice they will become more confident and relaxed.

If you would like to know more about looking after your children’s dental health or are looking for a childrens dentist in Adelaide then we invite you to book a consultation with us on (08) 8346 3940. At your kid’s dental check up we can discuss their dental health with you and them to ensure you are all on ‘the same dental page’.