Kids Dental Care

baby teeth
Baby Teeth vs Adult Teeth
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How many teeth do children have compared to adults?

The answer is that children have 20 baby teeth and as children grow older, they will have 32 adult teeth. Adult teeth are also known as permanent teeth or secondary teeth. Fun fact permanent teeth start to develop in the jaws at birth and continue after a child is born. By about 21 years of age, the average person has 32 permanent teeth, which includes 16 in the upper jaw and 16 in the lower jaw. There are cases however when the third molars (aka wisdom teeth – do not develop or do not erupt). This then leaves a set of 28 permanent teeth which is considered normal too.

 

What are the differences between baby teeth vs adult teeth?

Baby teeth can be different from permanent teeth in many ways. Baby teeth can be whiter in color compared to adult permanent teeth which are actually more yellowish in color. It is also differ in that their outer shell, known as enamel, and the dentin layer are both thinner and weaker, and the pulp is larger relative to the size of the whole tooth. Other variable differences between adult and baby teeth include the number of teeth, eruption times, types of teeth, anatomy, and composition.

 

Are baby teeth as important as adult teeth?

Parents tend to think that looking after baby (primary) teeth isn’t as important as caring for adult (permanent) teeth, simply because baby teeth aren’t permanent and are meant to fall out anyway. In actuality, baby teeth are very important because, amongst other things, they enable children to chew food and speak properly. They also reserve the spaces in gum tissue for future adult teeth to grow.

 

When do baby teeth fall out and adult teeth grow in?

Typically around the age of about six years, baby teeth start to become ‘wobbly’ and fall out to make way for adultry. However it can also be normal for a child to lose their first tooth up to a year or two earlier or later than six years of age. Interestingly girls generally lose teeth earlier than boys and the first tooth to fall out is usually located in the front of the lower jaw.

 

Should I have a need do I remove baby or adult teeth?

While baby teeth are meant to come out in due time, permanent teeth are supposed to be, as the name implies, permanent. Removing a permanent tooth is a big deal, as it will not grow back and its removal forever changes your mouth.

 

What can I do to insure healthy baby and adult teeth?

Call our office for a consultation and to schedule an infant dental exam.  Dr. Albert Kim is a trusted dentist in Richmond, TX, with convenient access to the communities of Harvest Green, Long Meadows, Pecan Grove, Cinco Ranch, Sugarland, and Mission Bend.  Highline Dental offers state-of-the-art family dentistry and pediatric dentistry.  Call for your appointment today at (832) 220-9324. We look forward to meeting you and your family!

Brushing habits for child
When Should Kids Begin Brushing Their Own Teeth?
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If you have young children, you’re probably wondering when they should start handling their daily oral healthcare routine on their own. Here, we’ll not only explain when your kids should begin brushing their own teeth, but how you should teach them and how to get them excited to brush their teeth on their own. But first, let’s talk about how to care for their oral health before they can do so by themselves.

How to Care for Your Child’s Teeth

Even before your child has any teeth, wipe their gums with a moist washcloth every day, preferably after feedings. Around six months, when your baby’s teeth start emerging through their gums, start brushing them. You can use a soft-bristled toothbrush specifically made for a baby or even a wet washcloth wrapped around your finger to gently brush your baby’s teeth and gums to wipe away any bad, decay-causing bacteria. And as soon as your child has two teeth touching, begin flossing between their teeth.

When Kids Should Brush Their Own Teeth

Children typically shouldn’t start brushing their own teeth until they’re coordinated enough to tie their own shoes. This usually happens around age six or seven. Wait until they have enough dexterity to properly and safely use the tools themselves so they are more likely to reach every surface of their teeth. This timeline also gives you ample time to show them how to properly brush their teeth.

How to Teach Kids to Brush Their Own Teeth

Set a good example of great oral care for your family. Make a point of showing your kids that you brush your teeth twice a day: in the morning and at night before bed. When your child is coordinated enough, guide them through the following steps and supervise their brushing until you are confident they are getting an effective clean:

  • Use a small, soft-bristled toothbrush specifically made for children.
  • Wet the bristles before putting a small amount of toothpaste–about the size of a grain of rice if they’re under three and a pea-sized amount if they’re over three–on the toothbrush.
  • Brush the inside, outside, and chewing surfaces of every tooth using gentle, circular motions as you move throughout the mouth.
  • Remember to brush their tongue!
  • Always encourage your child to spit out their toothpaste and to not swallow it.

How to Get Your Kids Excited About Brushing

There are a bunch of ways to get your kids excited to brush their teeth. For example, take them to the store to pick out their own toothbrush that features their favorite character, make a game of tooth brushing, use positive reinforcement with a sticker chart or extra reading time or a special family outing, turn tooth brushing time into a dance party with their favorite song, or watch any of the many videos available online that are made specifically to keep your child entertained while they brush their teeth. If your child is especially reluctant to brush their teeth, consider investing in an electric toothbrush to jazz up their oral care routine.

We See Patients of All Ages!

Highline Dental offers affordable dental care for patients of all ages in Richmond, TX. If you have any other questions about proper preventive oral care for your children or would like to schedule their next checkup at our office, contact us today.

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