Just how important are baby teeth?

“They’re just baby teeth, right? They’re gonna fall out anyway! Dental care is not necessary at this young… it’s just another way for dentists to make more money off of us.”

I have heard SO much debate about this topic. Here’s the deal, parents. Sure. They are baby teeth that will in fact fall out, but they also play a much larger role in your child’s oral health.

First of all, know that baby teeth are just as susceptible to cavities and deterioration as adult (aka permanent) teeth. If baby teeth are not properly taken care of they can get cavities, decay and fall out before they are ready to. Not only will this cause your child discomfort and pain, but it can also open the door for a lot of other problems.

Baby teeth help a child to speak clearly and learn the correct pronunciation of words. Without them it is difficult for them to do so. Children also need their baby teeth to chew food properly. If they are unable to adequately break down food it can affect their digestive system and cause problems for them.

Also, baby teeth are sort of reserving a seat for the later permanent teeth when they are ready to come in. They create a pathway for the permanent teeth to follow, which has a significant impact on the alignment and spacing of the permanent teeth. If a baby tooth falls out too early, the permanent teeth may start gravitating toward the empty space causing spacing issues.

But the last, possibly most important, roll of baby teeth is for parents to use them as a tool to teach children how to properly care for their teeth, so that they are ready and able to care for their permanent teeth when they come in. This will save them so much money and stress in their adult lives, as well as impress upon them the importance of a healthy lifestyle.

So parents brush your baby’s teeth and instill the value of good oral hygiene in them. Take them to the dentist regularly, so that they become comfortable with the dentist office, instead of afraid. Teach them to take care of themselves, because healthy habits build healthy lives.

Start ‘em young and raise ‘em right!

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