Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Do you care about your Baby’s Milk Teeth?

I know every mom’s concern is how to keep their baby’s milk teeth strong. My son, at 17 months, has almost complete set of teeth. When he is just 3 months, we already noticed bumps on his gums with visible white caps. His first two teeth erupted when he was going 6 months.

@ 6 months

@ 8 months
@ 9 months

@ 10 months
@ 17 months

His teeth erupted so fast since then. He will have 2-4 teeth simultaneously coming out. That is why I am very much concerned with cleaning his teeth and with what he eats, as well.

Babies actually have teeth beneath their gums. While in the womb, baby teeth begin to grow forming tooth buds in their gums. Majority of the babies have their first teeth eruption between ages 4 to 7 months. While for late bloomer, they have to wait unit they are one year old or more.

Teeth usually erupted one at a time over a period of months. Its usual order is as follows: Bottom two middle teeth à Top two middle teeth à Teeth along the sides and back. The second molars, which are found in the very back of the mouth on top and bottom, are the last teeth to pop out at around baby’s second birthday. So your child should have a complete set of 20 milk teeth at age of 3. These should not fall until his permanent teeth are ready to start popping at around 6 years old.

Milk teeth are as important as permanent teeth. Milk teeth let your child to chew better making them healthier. When baby’s teeth are not healthy and well-aligned, your child may have hard time chewing and thus, may not have a well-balanced diet. When your child has tooth decay, loose teeth or aching gums, he may refuse to eat or may only take soft or liquid foods she eat with lesser pain. However, your child needs a balanced diet of a variety of foods, and that chewing foods of different quality induces and exercises the gums and gives a flushing out action for the teeth.

Also, a child who is starting to lose his milk teeth may have difficulty forming words and speaking clearly. Healthy milk teeth are also important in the normal development of the jaw bones and facial muscles.
Healthy milk teeth also give your child d a happy healthy smile. And lastly, milk teeth reserve room for the permanent teeth to help them guide into their position.

These are the importance of baby/milk teeth. So taking care of them is a MUST. Here are some pointers to help our little one clean his/her teeth successfully (Courtesy of Baby Teeth Maintenance Menu)

Dental Hygiene Milestone

0 - 1 Year Old
You as a parent need to take on all the responsibilities on cleaning these baby teeth.
  • Tool: a moistened gauze or washcloth, NO toothpaste
  • How Often: once a day
  • Method: Wrap the gauze or cloth around the finger and massage the gum and the teeth
1-3 Years Old Kids at this age will be able to start learning about tooth brushing and parent are responsible for providing guidance. You definitely have to help him/her on flossing. But you only need to do it if there's no space in between those baby teeth.
  • Tool: Kid's sized tooth brush, fluoride toothpaste (start around 2 years old) or a non fluoride toothpaste, click here, floss
  • How much: toothpaste ~ a pea size; floss ~ an (parent's) arm's length
  • When: Brush once in the morning; once before bed; Floss once before brushing
  • How long: Brush at least 1 minute for kids.
  • Method: There are many methods you can try. Usually, it's easier for kid to brush their teeth in the direction of those teeth grow. Here's a sequence you may want to follow.
3 - 6 Years Old
At this age, you should let your kid take up the responsibility of brushing their teeth in the morning. They'll love the sense of independability. Help them with flossing and brushing before they go to bed.

> 6 Years Old
Supervise your kids actively when they are doing their own brushing in the morning and at bedtime. They may still need your help on flossing until they are 9 years old.

So it is very important to start to teach our babies a good oral hygiene at an early age. This will give them a sense of responsibility of taking good care of their permanent teeth as well.
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  1. I find this blog very helpful. Thanks mommy Maye. My son got his first 'tooth' when he was 3-days old, but the pedia said it isn't a real tooth and will fall off easily, and it did. I just don't know if that's a milk tooth already, coz his pedia said to not worry about it.

  2. Hi Mommy Rose Anne. Thank you for dropping by. Yes, those are milk teeth and it will really fall to give way to the permanent ones.


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