Deciduous Teeth 101: The Ultimate Guide for Parents on Your Child’s First Teeth

Ultimate guide for parents on your child's first teeth

As a parent, someone has probably asked you, “what are deciduous teeth?” at some point. This question is reasonable because the term isn’t commonly used in everyday language. Deciduous teeth have been around for centuries and offer clues to our past. But more importantly for parents, understanding deciduous teeth can provide valuable insight into their child’s development as they grow. This blog post will explain deciduous teeth, how many there are, and why these baby chompers matter to your kiddo’s future dental health.

What are deciduous teeth?

Deciduous teeth, also known as primary or baby teeth, are the first teeth a child will sprout. Unlike adult teeth that can last a lifetime, deciduous teeth are only meant to be present until adulthood. They are designed to stay with us from 6 months to 12 years and then make way for permanent teeth. Deciduous teeth are essential in developing our jaws, facial bones and correct speech. They also act as placeholders for the permanent teeth that come after, helping them develop and grow in the right spot. Additionally, the molars will enable children to properly chew foods of various consistencies, which is vital for proper nutrition. Therefore deciduous teeth are essential for achieving good oral health in children.

How many deciduous teeth are there?

They typically emerge between six months and one year old and begin to be replaced with permanent teeth at around six years old. There are 20 deciduous teeth, four incisors (top and bottom), two canines (top and bottom) and four molars in each arch of the mouth – resulting in 8 per arch on each side. These teeth help foster proper speech development, jaw growth, and space management in preparation for the appropriate eruption and alignment of permanent teeth later on.

Care and maintenance for deciduous teeth

Taking care of deciduous teeth is essential to maintaining a good oral hygiene routine. Good brushing habits for children should be started as soon as they turn one. Care for deciduous teeth includes regular brushing twice daily and flossing once a day, such as after breakfast and bedtime. Children can start helping to brush their teeth at around age two and should do so with supervision until they are at least seven years old. Mouthwash may also be introduced as early as three years of age but should only be used under adults’ guidance to ensure safe usage instructions are followed. To avoid decay, limit sugary snacks or beverages and monitor how much juice your child drinks daily because the sugar and acids wear away tooth enamel with constant exposure.

When do deciduous teeth fall out?

The onset of the shedding of primary (deciduous) teeth typically begins around six years old. Usually, this process is complete by the time a child reaches twelve or thirteen; however, it can be slightly earlier or later, depending on the individual. The emergence of permanent teeth generally follows shortly after. For children, it’s believed that new adult teeth arrive in their mouth within two to four weeks after each deciduous tooth has fallen out. It should be noted that the exchange of primary and adult teeth doesn’t follow an exact timeline; therefore, it’s essential to remain conscientious if there appear to be any issues during the process.

Evaluation of deciduous teeth at Simply Dental Chatswood, Sydney NSW, Australia

Deciduous teeth, also known as baby teeth or primary teeth, are the first set of teeth a child gets. They typically erupt around six months old and start falling out around six. A complete set of deciduous teeth consists of 20 baby teeth: 10 on the top and ten on the bottom. These teeth are essential in helping children chew food, speak clearly, and maintain space for adult (permanent) teeth. When baby teeth fall out on schedule, and permanent teeth come in without complications, it’s a sign that your child is developing typically.

In conclusion, deciduous teeth, commonly referred to as primary or baby teeth, play a crucial role in a child’s oral development. These initial 20 teeth, comprising incisors, canines, and molars, pave the way for proper speech, jaw growth, and guide the emergence of permanent teeth. Maintaining good oral hygiene practices from an early age is vital to ensure the health of these deciduous teeth, which includes regular brushing, flossing, and monitoring sugar intake. The shedding of these baby chompers usually commences around six years of age and is usually complete by the age of twelve or thirteen, followed by the arrival of permanent teeth.

For a thorough evaluation of your child’s deciduous teeth and to ensure they’re developing as expected, it’s advisable to consult experienced dentists in Chatswood. At Simply Dental Chatswood, our skilled dentists can provide the necessary guidance and care to support your child’s dental health as they transition from baby teeth to permanent teeth, promoting a lifetime of good oral well-being.

To facilitate, we also have experienced dentists in Willoughby.


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