The eruption of the first baby teeth is an exciting moment for parents. This is just one of the many milestones that babies go through and parents can look forward to in the first year. Yet, since baby teeth are not permanent and parents know that these teeth will eventually fall out, many often wrongly assume that these baby teeth are not important. What parents need to understand is that the baby teeth truly are important, and they play a large role in a child’s overall health, development, and well-being.
Your child’s baby teeth are more than just a cute feature, and they need to be properly cared for at home and in the dentist’s office. Why are baby teeth so important? Here are the top five reasons:
- Baby teeth promote good nutrition through proper chewing
- They assist in proper speech development and pronunciation
- They provide a path for permanent teeth to follow when they are due to erupt
- They provide proper stabilization of the jaw bone and support neighboring teeth
- They build up a child’s confidence by providing an attractive smile
Because the baby teeth are so important, they need to be well taken care of from the first moment that they erupt inside the mouth. Many parents do not think to brush their young infant’s teeth, yet baby teeth can become infected and get cavities just like adult teeth. Tooth decay is a serious disease because it does not stay contained to just a single tooth. Tooth decay can spread easily and quickly to neighboring teeth, and it is especially harmful to young children because their immune systems are not fully developed and cannot fight off infection. If a tooth needs to be extracted from a child’s mouth, it will probably require a spacer to be placed inside the mouth. The mouth needs to be supported so that the other teeth inside the mouth have the reinforcement they need.
The baby teeth set up the future for your child’s entire oral health. They are not to be ignored or overlooked. By starting the priority of good oral health from your child’s earliest days, s/he will understand the importance of her/his own teeth. Baby teeth pave the way for a healthy mouth and a healthy future. Contact the practice of Dr. Wayne G. Suway today to learn more.