When they are young, children go through various developmental milestones. Some days, it seems like time moves very slowly when you’re a tired parent balancing so many duties. Other days, it seems as though your child is suddenly growing up way too fast for your liking, and you long for time to go slower in these situations. Children experience so many major life milestones! Have you ever thought about all the dental milestones that children can reach? How about what to expect? The specific timing for each child varies. However, the majority of kids should reach the following dental milestones:
Birth to One Year: Eruption of Baby Teeth
You might not be aware of it, but your baby’s primary teeth are starting to form in her jaw even before her first tooth erupts. By the time they turn one, most babies’ first teeth should start to erupt. The two bottom teeth are often the first to erupt.
Teething episodes can be difficult, but they can also be exciting since they show your baby is developing. Their new teeth will provide them access to a larger variety of foods and, eventually, facilitate verbal communication.
Age 1 – 3 Years: First Dental Visit
Your child’s teeth will be actively erupting throughout this time, and by the time she is three, her mouth will be completely filled with baby teeth. Now is the ideal time to schedule a dental appointment for your child if you haven’t already. Keep in mind that baby teeth do matter! They will help with speech development and hold space for the permanent teeth.
Your child should have a complete set of 20 baby teeth by the age of three, including four central incisors, four lateral incisors, four canines, and eight molars. But, well before this time, you can assist kids in developing healthy oral hygiene practices!
As soon as any teeth appear, begin daily brushing with a child’s toothbrush and toothpaste. Additionally, you can floss between their teeth daily. By doing this from an early age, they can become accustomed to and at ease with regular dental hygiene!
Age 5 or 6: First Tooth Lost
The next significant dental milestone is the loss of baby teeth and the emergence of permanent teeth. This is referred to as “mixed dentition” by your dentist. Around the age of five or six, it occurs. Your child will typically need six years to lose all of her baby teeth before her last set of adult teeth erupts (except the wisdom teeth). As a parent, you must constantly check on your kid to make sure she is cleaning her teeth at least twice a day. Encourage her and make sure it’s enjoyable for her instead of feeling like a job. Additionally, your child should now go twice a year for checkups and preventative treatment at the dentist.
Baby teeth that are lost will be replaced with adult teeth. Because the gums already have room for teeth to grow, this might occasionally cause some pain and discomfort, though not nearly as much as when they were still developing their baby teeth.
Age 12 to 13: Molar Eruption
All of your child’s typical adult teeth erupt around the age of 12 or 13, along with the 12-year molars. This time, there can be dental problems that require care, like overlap, crowding, or a bad bite. Braces may be required for your child’s treatment. Most children acquire braces between the ages of 12 and 13, but some dentists may advise an orthodontic evaluation as early as 7. Teenagers are well known for having poor eating habits. Your child may be able to understand how crucial good dental health is to their overall health as they approach this age. Strive to teach children this connection as a parent.
Age 13+: Wisdom Teeth
Most teenagers’ jaws won’t have enough room for their third teeth to erupt. In this case, they might need to be extracted in order to prevent issues down the road such as infection, pain, and movement of neighboring teeth. You may be referred to an oral surgeon by your dentist. Your child’s orthodontist will monitor these teeth if he or she has worn braces by obtaining specialized x-rays. The orthodontist may execute the procedure himself if he is qualified. However, some fortunate patients never develop wisdom teeth or never require removal.
Your child should have 28 adult teeth by the time they are 12 or 13 years old, including four central incisors, four lateral incisors, four canines, eight premolars, and eight molars. They may still have 1-4 wisdom teeth, which are extra molars that erupt between the ages of 17 and 26.
By regularly brushing and flossing their teeth, drinking lots of water, eating a balanced diet, and coming to our clinic for regular professional cleanings, they may maintain excellent oral health. If your child participates in sports, they should wear a sports mouthguard to protect their teeth.
There are a number of developmental dental milestones that children will experience throughout their childhood up until their young adult lives. They will develop baby teeth, lose them, then grow adult teeth, possibly requiring wisdom tooth extraction. Children should visit a dentist for a checkup at least once a year, regardless of their dental health or stage of development.
We take great pride in serving patients of all ages, including children, in our many offices. Remember that kids might accomplish their dental milestones earlier or later than the listed ages and still have fantastic oral health! Please get in touch with us right away if you have any concerns about your child’s dental development or inquiries about our services.