Your baby’s first teeth. How you delight in those white, little chiclets as they start to appear! But baby teeth are more than just cute – they serve an important purpose: helping your little one speak, smile and chew properly. They also serve as space holders in the jaw for the eventual emergence of permanent teeth.
At the office of Suzanne Clift, DDS, one of the most common questions parents ask us is what to expect when their baby starts to teethe. Our professional team is committed to maintaining your child’s excellent oral health at all stages of life — and that also includes giving you advice on what you can do to help care for your baby’s early dental needs.
Five Stages of Teething
Stage 1: (0-6 months) Babies are born with a full set of 20 teeth sitting beneath the gums.
Stage 2: (6 months) The upper and lower front teeth erupt.
Stage 3: (10-14 months) Primary bicuspids erupt.
Stage 4: (16-22 months) Canine teeth (the sharp, pointy teeth) erupt.
Stage 5: (25-33 months) Large molars erupt.
What to do…and when
1. Start a dental care routine even before your baby’s first tooth emerges. Use a damp, soft washcloth to gently clean his gums after feedings.
2. When first teeth do emerge, clean them with a toothbrush that has soft bristles and a small head, along them with a drop of toothpaste. We recommend brushing after each feeding and at bedtime. Local drugstores sell specially-designed toothbrushes for infants and babies.
3. Examine your baby’s teeth twice a month and look for any signs of discoloration that may signal the start of tooth decay. Brushing regularly can help minimize the risk of this happening. If you do see signs of decay, call our office immediately.
Committed to your child’s oral health:
At the office of Suzanne Clift, DDS, we offer the highest quality of skilled and compassionate care for your family’s needs. For more information, give us a call today.
By Suzanne Clift, DDS
January 25, 2021