If someone says to you, “Baby teeth fall out, so you don’t have to worry about them, right?” You tell them, “Wrong!”
Okay, maybe you don’t want to just shout “Wrong!” at them, but you can tell them that in truth, baby teeth are important to a child’s overall health and wellness. Inadequate care of baby teeth, a.k.a. primary teeth, can leave behind bad effects on a child’s overall health and wellness, even when the teeth are long gone.
4 Ways Baby Teeth Are Important To Overall Health And Wellness
- Baby teeth help young children chew food properly.
- Baby teeth are a part of speech development.
- Baby teeth hold space for permanent teeth to grow in.
- Baby teeth can decay, and untreated decay “can result in a broad range of functional impairments that have far-reaching implications for growth, development, school performance, and peer relationships.“
Fortunately, caring for baby teeth is as easy as caring for your own.
How To Care For Your Baby’s Teeth And Gums
Prior to teething, use a soft, warm, wet cloth to gently massage your baby’s gums. Once teeth begin to appear, you can brush with a soft toothbrush, but don’t use toothpaste until around age two. Kids can begin learning to brush their teeth around age two or three, but they will need help or supervision typically until age 6 or 7. Finally, you should schedule regular checkups with your child’s dentist, beginning at 12 months of age, or within 6 months from when baby’s first tooth appears.