Pediatric dentistry is an area of dentistry that focuses on the oral health of children. Starting good dental hygiene habits early in life is important. As the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states, more than 50% of children under the age of nine have had at least one cavity in their baby teeth, and…
Why Pediatric Dentistry Stresses Importance of Keeping Child’s Baby Teeth
A pediatric dentistry appointment is a good way to keep your child’s baby teeth in good health. You will be surprised to learn that the baby teeth are almost as important as the permanent teeth. Visiting a pediatric dentist regularly is necessary in order to keep the baby teeth healthy. Read on to learn more about the importance of the role of pediatric dentistry in keeping baby teeth.
Alignment and position of the teeth
The primary teeth make space for the permanent teeth to come in. The baby teeth also guide the permanent teeth into the right position. If a child loses a baby tooth because of decay or an accident, the other teeth will start to drift. When the permanent tooth comes in, there will not be enough space for it. The permanent tooth can end up coming in crooked. In some cases, it can even be blocked from coming in altogether.
Having healthy permanent teeth
A child’s permanent teeth develop near the roots of the baby teeth. Baby teeth are much smaller than the permanent teeth. The enamel on baby teeth is thinner, so the cavities can spread faster. If a cavity is not treated in a baby tooth, then the tooth can have an infection.
This can even become an abscess, which is a more serious infection. When the baby tooth is infected, then the permanent tooth may not develop properly. This can cause damage to the underlying tooth as well. It will be harder to treat if this happens.
Proper nutrition and health
The teeth are needed so the child can chew. If a child has cavities that cause dental pain, then the child may have nutritional deficiencies. This happens when the child cannot chew food properly. If the cavities are not treated, then an infection can happen.
An infection can spread to the other teeth and parts of the body. It can even spread to the brain. That would be an emergency situation requiring hospitalization. Unfortunately, a dental abscess can cause death in children.
Development of speech
The cheeks, tongue, and lips use the teeth to form sounds. The baby teeth need to be positioned properly to help children form words for speech. The structure of the teeth can also support facial muscles. This is important as the facial muscles continue to develop and shape the child’s face.
Self-esteem and concentration
If a child has dental pain, it can negatively affect performance in school. This can prevent them from learning. Decayed teeth also affect a child’s self-esteem. This can cause a child to miss school. Parents might miss work for emergency dental appointments for children.
What to do when a child loses a baby tooth too early
It is normal for a child to lose baby teeth at around six years old. Losing primary teeth will continue until a child reaches 11 to 13 years old. Typically, the lower front teeth are the first ones to fall out. The second premolars are the last. But some children may lose baby teeth earlier than others. Once a primary tooth falls out, seeing a pediatric dentistry professional is ideal.
Common causes of premature baby tooth loss
Losing baby teeth too early may be brought about by different factors. A child may suddenly fall or collide with something firm. The dental trauma may produce enough force to cause premature baby tooth loss. Severe gum infection may also lead to weakened gum tissue. This may even spread to the jawbone that supports the tooth. Medical conditions like childhood cancer or a genetic bone disorder may also cause the early loss of baby teeth.
Severe decay may also lead to premature baby tooth loss. Cavities can provide an opening for bacteria. The dentist will need to remove the severely decayed tooth. This will prevent the infection from spreading to the healthy baby teeth. Extracting the tooth will also prevent complications to the developing adult teeth.
Preventing premature loss of baby teeth through pediatric dentistry practices
Practicing proper oral hygiene is the most effective way to prevent the loss of baby teeth. This is possible by brushing two times a day. Flossing once a day also helps. Limiting the child’s intake of carbohydrate-rich foods. Nutritious foods can help support the child’s dental health.
Taking the child to the dentist for regular checkups can also spot any problems and solve them early. A physical dental exam and diagnostic tests can help detect these dental issues. Parents must cooperate with the dentist to implement proper oral care. This can help prevent the loss of baby teeth.
Choose pediatric dentistry today
Taking your child to a pediatric dentist regularly can help prevent many health problems. Pediatric dentistry emphasizes keeping baby teeth because they play such a big role in health. Your child’s dentist can tell you how often to bring your child in. Making an appointment today might save your child pain later on.
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