The Importance of Primary Teeth
Preventing Future Problems
Baby teeth do not last forever, but they are vital to your child’s lifelong health. When you take good care of baby teeth, you can prevent costly and complicated dental procedures in the future.
Baby teeth serve the obvious function of helping your child get proper nutrition. If your child’s teeth hurt, they may choose only foods that may be soothing but that contain no nutritional value. Painful cavities or sore gums can prevent proper chewing, which will upset your child’s digestion.
Baby teeth are important for speech development. Healthy, well-aligned teeth help your child form words and speak clearly.
One of the most important jobs baby teeth perform is to hold space for the permanent teeth that will replace them. If a baby tooth is lost or has to be removed prematurely, the neighboring teeth can drift into the open space. This can block the permanent tooth coming in and result in teeth that are crooked or misaligned.
If a tooth is lost prematurely, we might attach a space maintainer to save room for the permanent tooth to move into position. The space maintainer can usually be removed once the permanent tooth pushes through the gums. A space maintainer can help prevent costly orthodontics later on.
To help protect your child’s teeth, brush them at least twice each day. As soon as two teeth are touching, floss every day. If your child sleeps with a bottle, fill it only with water.
Make sure your child comes to see us twice each year. Good dental habits now can prevent problems for years to come.