The team at our Birmingham, AL dental office truly enjoys practicing children’s dentistry. It’s a joy to watch little kids' early dental development. Just think – those adorable little teeth have just been sitting there in the gums waiting to make their big debut! Then the day finally comes and, after a few tears, a shiny new tooth appears.
You have to think that Mother Nature’s got this process pretty well under control. Baby teeth develop in the gums, then emerge, and when the time comes, they fall out and primary teeth emerge.
Note that we said, when the time comes. It can be easy to make the mistake of thinking that, since they fall out anyway, baby teeth aren’t all that important. Nothing could be further from the truth! If you want to protect your child’s long-term oral health, you need to understand the important role that baby teeth play:
Functions of Baby Teeth
- Baby teeth act as placeholders for permanent teeth – While baby teeth are emerging, permanent teeth are developing in the gums. The baby tooth holds a space so that the primary tooth can erupt normally. A baby tooth that’s lost too soon creates a space that allows primary teeth to emerge at odd angles, potentially leading to misalignment problems.
- Baby teeth allow natural speech – There’s a lot going on while the baby teeth are developing. Your child’s speech patterns are also developing, and a tooth that’s lost before its time can have a profound effect on your child’s ability to speak properly.
- Baby teeth help your child chew normally – During this time, your child is also learning to eat and chew with their new teeth. Missing teeth can cause discomfort, abnormal chewing, and possible excess wearing of teeth.
Children's Dentistry in Birmingham AL
We hope this helps you understand why proper care of your child’s baby teeth is essential. There’s a lot to think about when you have kids, but when it comes to your children’s dentistry, the team at our Birmingham, AL dental office is here to support all your needs!