Waterford, MI Dentist
Lloyd H. Alpert, D.D.S.
4025 Highland Road
Waterford, MI 48328
(248) 682-6010

Posts for tag: Baby Teeth

Important Information About Baby Teeth: They Do Matter

A child's primary teeth, sometimes called "baby teeth," are as important as the permanent adult teeth.

When Do Baby Teeth Come In?

A baby’s 20 primary teeth are already present in the jaws at birth and typically begin to appear when a baby is between 6 months and 1 year.

When teeth first come in, some babies may have sore or tender gums. Gently rubbing your child's gums with a clean finger, a small, cool spoon or a wet gauze pad can be soothing. You can also give the baby a clean teething ring to chew on. If your child is still cranky and in pain, consult your dentist or physician. Most children have a full set of 20 primary teeth by the time they are 3.

Why Baby Teeth Matter

Not only do primary teeth help children chew and speak, they also hold space in the jaws for permanent teeth that are growing under the gums. When a baby tooth is lost too early, the permanent teeth can drift into the empty space and make it difficult for other adult teeth to find room when they come in. This can make teeth crooked or crowded. That’s why starting infants off with good oral care can help protect their teeth for decades to come.

When Should I Start Taking My Child to the Dentist?

The ADA recommends that a dentist examine a child within six months after the first tooth comes in and no later than the first birthday. A dental visit at an early age is a "well-baby checkup" for the teeth. Besides checking for tooth decay and other problems, the dentist can show you how to clean the child's teeth properly and how to evaluate any adverse habits such as thumb sucking.

How to Care for Your Child's Teeth

It’s important to care for your baby’s teeth from the start. Here's what to do:

    Begin cleaning your baby’s mouth during the first few days after birth by wiping the gums with a clean, moist gauze pad or washcloth. As soon as teeth appear, decay can occur. A baby’s front four teeth usually push through the gums at about 6 months of age, although some children don’t have their first tooth until 12 or 14 months.

    For children younger than 3 years, caregivers should begin brushing children’s teeth as soon as they begin to come into the mouth by using fluoride toothpaste in an amount no more than a smear or the size of a grain of rice. Brush teeth thoroughly twice per day (morning and night) or as directed by a dentist or physician. Supervise children’s brushing to ensure that they use of the appropriate amount of toothpaste.

    For children 3 to 6 years of age, use a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste. Brush teeth thoroughly twice per day (morning and night) or as directed by a dentist or physician. Supervise children’s brushing and remind them not to swallow the toothpaste.

    Until you’re comfortable that your child can brush on his or her own, continue to brush your child's teeth twice a day with a child-size toothbrush and a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste. When your child has two teeth that touch, you should begin flossing their teeth daily.

Mouth Healthy

American Dental Association

Teeth begin forming in your baby even before birth. Here is when you can expect to begin seeing them:

  • Central incisor (front two upper and bottom teeth): 6-12 months
  • Lateral incisor (the two teeth flanking the upper and bottom front two teeth): 9-16 months
  • Canines (pointy teeth in the upper jaw): 16-23 months
  • First molars (upper and bottom back teeth): 13-19 months
  • Second molars (upper and bottom back teeth): 22-33 months

All 20 primary teeth — also called baby teeth — are present in the jawbones at birth. The lower two front teeth are usually the first to erupt. This most often occurs somewhere around 6 months after birth. Do not be concerned if your baby is a little late. The numbers here are only an average. By age 3, all 20 primary teeth should be present.

January 30, 2014
Category: Dental News
Tags: Baby Teeth  

Dental Health From Birth To Age 3

 Baby Bottle Nipples
Usually, we like to see your child for their first check-up at about age 2 - 3 years, when all their primary [deciduous] teeth have erupted. However, there are many measures that you as parents can take before this time to insure good oral health. To begin, if mom is not going to breast feed, the type of nipple used on the bottle can have a definite effect on the growth of the jaws and development of muscles and swallowing patterns. The NUK nipple has an optimal shape that fits the anatomy of your babys mouth. Upon first sight, many parents assume that its funny shape and size will cause the baby to reject it, and thus, shy away from using it. Try the NUK nipple for a few days. Most babies will accept it readily. Using the NUK will lessen the chance of your baby developing a colicky stomach and may prevent certain orthodontic conditions that wont become evident until your child is much older.

 Fluoride
Perhaps, the most predictable and consistent preventive measure in dentistry is the ingestion of systemic [enters the blood stream] fluoride up to about age 14. The incorporation of fluoride into the tooth enamel allows the tooth to be more resistant to demineralization by acid and ensuing tooth decay. If your water district doesnt add fluoride to the water supply, your baby should be receiving fluoride drops of a fluoride/vitamin combination as soon as possible after birth. The first permanent molars are already calcifying by age 3 months. It is in this formative stage that the tooth will incorporate the greatest amount of fluoride. Studies have shown that fluoride will not cross the placental barrier, so pregnant woman no longer receive fluoride preparations. Systemic fluoride [at 1 part per million] is a safe and effective way to dramatically reduce dental decay, along with the cost of dental treatment. Please call our office to learn if your water is fluoridated, and if not, we will be able to prescribe the proper dosage.

 Teething
On the average a baby will start to get their first teeth at about six months. Teething [tooth eruption] can cause discomfort for your baby, as well as many sleepless nights for you. During teething periods, your baby may exhibit excess drooling, runny noses, low-grade temperature and/or overall crankiness. To help this situation, you may purchase some 2 by 2 inch gauze pads at your pharmacy and lightly rub your babys gums with them several times a day. This will remove a thin layer of plaque that forms on their gums, thus lessening eruption pain. Most babies will find this massaging very soothing, and some will derive pleasure from sucking on the gauze or your finger. A clean teeth ring to chew on may also be helpful. Teething gels or ointments that will temporarily numb your babys gums and reduce discomfort are available at your pharmacist.

 Nursing Bottle Syndrome
Many parents give their babies a bottle in bed to pacify him/her and enable them to fall asleep. Most people fill the bottle with milk, formula, fruit juice or water mixed with a sweetening agent such as Kayro syrup or honey. Unfortunately, as your baby falls asleep, the tongue and nipple on the bottle pool the liquid around certain teeth. The acidic and/or sugar content of these liquids can cause severe tooth decay. This is called nursing bottle or baby bottle syndrome. Dont allow your baby to become a dental cripple before his/her first check-up. If you must give them a bottle in bed, be sure to fill it only with plain water.

 
By contactus
February 01, 2012
Tags: Baby Teeth  

February is National Children's Dental Health Month and the members of the Michigan Dental Association want to make sure your child develops a happy, healthy smile! It is just as important to take care of your child’s primary (baby) teeth as it is to take care of the permanent teeth that follow.

Primary teeth are important for proper chewing and digestion of food. They also help your child to learn to speak properly and have a good-looking smile. Primary teeth serve as space maintainers to save room for your child’s permanent teeth. When a baby tooth is lost too early, other teeth may drift into the empty space left behind and cause problems such as overcrowding and crooked teeth when adult teeth emerge.

Decay in baby teeth can be just as painful to your child as decay in an adult tooth. If a child is suffering pain from decaying primary teeth, it may result in improper speech, dietary problems or trouble concentrating in school. Millions of valuable school hours are lost each year to children due to tooth decay.

If you need help locating dental care for your child, please contact your local county health department for help. Your child can have a healthy mouth for a lifetime! 



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