Did you know that teeth begin to form before a baby is even born? It’s true! There are three distinct stages as the teeth develop:
At Six Weeks of Pregnancy: The first stage is when the tooth forms inside the unborn baby’s jaw.
At the Third and Fourth month of Pregnancy: The hard, enamel-like tissue surrounding the baby’s teeth begins to develop.
Within the First Year After Birth: The fully formed baby teeth will begin to emerge.
You can expect your baby to have twenty primary teeth (baby teeth). The emergence of baby teeth is frequently referred to as “teething.” Teething is an uncomfortable experience for babies, and it can make them cranky, fussy, or develop bad breath.
Three Kinds of Baby Teeth Emerge in the Growing Process
- Molars: four first molars and four second molars. The molars are found in the very back of the mouth.
- Canine teeth: There are four of these and they are the distinctly “pointed” teeth that come between the incisors and the molars.
- Incisors: four lateral incisors and four central incisors. These are the teeth we see in the front and are most noticeable when your baby smiles.
Typically, the incisors come in first followed by the canine teeth and then the molars. Keep in mind that each baby develops at a different pace so there’s no cause for alarm if teething begins earlier or later.
Recommended Dental Care During the Baby Teeth Growing Process
The enamel or outer covering of your baby’s teeth is thinner and more delicate than the permanent teeth we have as adults. This quality gives your baby’s teeth a pretty, snowy white color but it also means they’re at greater risk for tooth decay. Keeping your baby’s teeth clean will protect them against cavities, tooth decay, and tooth pain. Allowing the baby teeth to become damaged can create complications for the permanent teeth that are waiting to emerge.
To Reduce the Risk of Tooth Decay
- Gently wipe your baby’s gums and teeth with a damp cloth or gauze after feeding. Once teeth emerge use an infant toothbrush and warm water to carefully clean the teeth.
- Try to avoid sweets, fruit juices, and candy as much as possible. When treats are given, be sure that tooth brushing takes place before bedtime.
- Start scheduling routine visits to a pediatric dentist once the baby teeth begin to emerge. Once every six months is recommended for preventative dental services.
Your child’s head, face, and jaw will grow throughout the baby teeth growing process and by the time they reach six years old, permanent teeth will start to replace the baby teeth.
Make an Appointment with Your Pediatric Dentist
If you live in the Las Vegas area, get in touch with Children’s Dentistry. Our mission is to provide a safe, welcoming experience at the dentist for your child. We provide the highest quality care possible and want to make sure your little one’s teeth come in healthy.
Contact us online or by phone at (702) 425-1371.