Japanese girl brushing her teeth (3 years old)

Parent’s Guide to Baby Teeth

Dental health for kids is just as important as it is for adults. And it’s never too early to learn more about your kid’s teeth and teach them good dental habits! We’ve assembled some important questions parents ask us at Kid’s Dentistree and provided some straightforward answers to help you be the best parent you can be!

If you need more information about your child’s baby teeth, feel free to give any one of our offices a call!

Why are baby teeth important?

The primary, or “baby” teeth play a crucial role in dental development. They allow your child to chew properly, smile confidently, aid in speech development and save space for the permanent teeth, guiding them into the correct position.

When do the first teeth erupt?

Your child’s teeth actually start forming before birth. As early as 4 months, the baby teeth push through the gums – the lower front teeth are first, followed by the upper front teeth. Most babies’ first tooth comes in around 6 months old. The process can be uncomfortable (see teething) but should not make your baby sick.

Check out this useful tooth eruption chart to see when you should expect baby teeth to come in and when your children will likely lose them to make room for permanent teeth:

Kid's Dentistree Tooth Eruption Chart

How do I clean my baby’s teeth and gums?

It is important to take care of your child’s gums even before their child’s first tooth erupts. Wipe the gums down with an infant, soft toothbrush or soft cloth, and water.

How do I prevent baby bottle tooth decay?

Tooth decay in infants can be minimized or totally prevented by not allowing sleeping infants to breast or bottle feed. Infants that need a bottle to comfortably fall asleep should be given a water-filled bottle only.

How does baby bottle tooth decay start?

A bottle containing anything other than water and left in an infant’s mouth while sleeping can cause decay. This includes breast milk, regular milk, formula, fruit juice, unsweetened fruit juice, soda, or even watered down juices.

When does teething start?

Teething is the term commonly used to describe with your child’s teeth are erupting through the gum line. Normally, the first tooth erupts between ages 6 to 12 months. Gums may be sore, tender and sometimes irritable until the age of 3.

What are some common teething remedies?

If your baby is experiencing pain from teething, there are several home remedies to try. Applying something cold, like an ice cube, to help numb the gums is very effective and soothing for teething pain. Some parents even freeze weak chamomile tea in ice cube form to give their babies. The chamomile is naturally calming and relaxes nerves. For children over the age of 2, you can use clove essential oil but you’ll want to consult your dentist and family physician just to be safe.

When should my child first see a dentist?

“First visit by first birthday” sums it up. Your child should visit a pediatric dentist when the first tooth comes in, usually between six and twelve months of age.

How do I remove a loose tooth?

Please don’t use a doorknob and string. Encourage your child to gently wiggle a loose tooth after they have washed their hands. The tooth may be rotated or twisted with the fingers to remove it from the gum tissues.

What should I do if my child has a toothache?

Clean the area by brushing or rinsing with warm salt water. Use dental floss to remove any food or debris that may be present.

When should I start flossing my child’s teeth?

After your child’s second tooth comes in, floss between the teeth and around the base of the tooth where it meets the gum line.

Remember: If you have additional questions, please feel free to give any one of our offices a call!

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