Baby teeth refer to the primary set of teeth that your child will have until their permanent (or adult) teeth are ready to emerge. Since baby teeth are temporary, many people unfortunately assume that they don’t really matter. The truth is, baby teeth serve very important roles towards your child’s health and development. Neglecting to care for primary teeth could lead to costly, devastating and permanent consequences.

Not only is tooth decay the leading cause of missed school days in children, but a cavity-ridden mouth brings a host of issues to a child’s overall well-being. Cavities need to be prevented and treated even when they occur on a primary tooth.

Here are five leading reasons why you should make caring for baby teeth a priority:

Proper chewing and eating.
Untreated cavities can make chewing painful and difficult. This may divert a child from eating a healthy, well-balanced diet that is needed for optimal growth and wellness. Every tooth serves a purpose in chewing and breaking down food.

Holding the space for the permanent teeth.
Primary teeth temporarily reserve space for permanent teeth to emerge in their proper position. When a baby tooth is damaged or decayed and lost too early, the permanent tooth behind it may erupt poorly. This can cause disruption in the entire bite alignment.

Proper development of the jaw bones and muscles.
Bones require proper stimulation in order to develop and retain their density. If primary teeth are absent, the jaw may not get the exercise it needs to develop like it should.

Speech Development
Missing teeth can inhibit your child from pronouncing certain syllables and words. This can translate to speech problems later in life.

Positive Self-Image
Last but not least, the retention and health of baby teeth play a strong role in your child’s appearance. A confident self-image is critical to their social development and overall self-esteem.

Schedule Your Child’s Routine Dental Cleaning

One of the best ways to start caring for your child’s smile is to schedule routine dental exams every six months. You should make the initial appointment as early as 1 year of age, or within six months of the first tooth eruption. Call West Hill Family Dental today for excellence in pediatric dentistry. We can treat the smiles of kids, as well as their parents and grandparents!

Posted on behalf of West Hill Family Dental