Baby teeth, which are also known as the deciduous teeth, are the first teeth to appear during the early stages of a child’s development. There are 20 deciduous teeth in all. The tooth eruption process generally begins around the first 6-8 months of a child’s life and lasts until the child is roughly three years old. This first set of teeth remain until the child loses the deciduous teeth, which are then replaced by the adult teeth.
The eruption of the baby teeth does not occur at random. In fact, the teeth “come in” or “erupt” in a clearly defined sequence. However, some minor variations in the sequence are normal and can vary from person to person. Here is what you should know about the baby teeth eruption sequence in children.
Teeth Formation Begins Before Birth
Teeth start their formation in the fetus at between 4 and 6 weeks of age. Roughly three months into the pregnancy, the teeth undergo a process known as mineralization which forms that hard tissue surrounding the teeth.
Types of Baby Teeth
Your child will develop 5 different types of baby teeth. These are:
- Central Incisors
- Lateral Incisors
- First Molars
- Second Molars
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The central incisor teeth are the first to erupt and this occurs around 6-12 months. The lateral incisor teeth erupt around 9-13 months. The first molars are the next teeth to erupt at around 13-19 months of age. Next the canines (also known as cuspid teeth) erupt around 16-22 months. The second molars are the last to erupt and these appear at around 25-33 months of age.
As demonstrated by this timeline, the baby teeth may not come in in the same order in which they appear in your child’s month. In addition, your child may develop multiple types of teeth at around the same time, which is normal as long as the appearance of the teeth falls into the rough time estimates for the eruption sequence.
As your child’s teeth come in, it is a good idea to keep track of the development of your child’s teeth. The eruption of your child’s primary teeth is a part of a complex biological and physiological process that also includes the development of the bone and soft tissues surrounding the teeth.
Normal Variations in the Eruption Sequence
Since every child is different, they will be some normal variations in the development of your child’s teeth. Here are some important variations that you should be aware of:
- When it comes to dental eruption, gender matters. Dental eruption typically occurs earlier in girls than in boys
- Late eruptions happen less frequently in the development of the baby teeth than in the development of the adult teeth
- Social and environmental factors can affect the rate of eruption of the baby teeth
Anomalies in the Dental Eruption Sequence
In certain cases, there may be anomalies in the dental eruption sequence, which can result in early or late eruptions. This may affect single or multiple teeth. In some cases, the teeth may develop normally but the eruption occurs late. In other cases, the late eruption could be the result of a physical obstruction that is preventing the tooth from undergoing normal eruption. The tooth may then become impacted or embedded. It will be important to seek early dental advice or treatment if this is the case.
More rarely, endocrine problems or certain syndromes could result in early eruption. If a tooth erupts in the bud state, this is known as premature eruption. Premature eruption may be caused by traumas, infections or tumors.
If you suspect that your child is experiencing such anomalies or has been diagnosed with one of the above conditions, it is a probably a good idea for your child to see a dentist. A dentist can examine your child’s teeth to determine whether or not they are erupting normally or abnormally.
Regular Dental Checkups Are Important for Children
As your child grows, the baby teeth will eventually be replaced with adult teeth. By making regularly scheduled appointments with a dentist, you can learn what to expect regarding your child’s development. You can also become acquainted with the signs and symptoms of abnormal oral development so that you can alert your child’s dentist if they occur. If you are looking for a dental service to provide regular dental care for your child, contact High Dental today to schedule an appointment.