When a Baby Tooth Is Lost Prematurely
By Green Bay Family Dental
November 11, 2021
Category: Oral Health
Tags: Baby Tooth  

A child getting their permanent teeth is an exciting sign that they’re getting older, but what if they lose their baby teeth too soon? Will it affect how their permanent teeth grow in, and can anything be done about it?

Fortunately, the orthodontics team in Green Bay, WI, at GB Family Dental are here to answer all your questions. Our dentists Dr. Heidi Eggers-Ulve and Dr. Eric Ulve, have decades of experience treating complex problems like premature loss of baby teeth.

What Are Baby Teeth?

Primary teeth—more commonly known as baby teeth—are your child’s first set of teeth. Typically, they start coming in between 6 to 12 months of age, and they should have all of their primary teeth by age 3. 

We all lose our baby teeth, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t necessary. They serve several vital roles in a child’s development, including:

  • Helping to learn proper chewing
  • Assists with speech development
  • Helps strengthen and grow jaw muscles

More importantly, they’re placeholders for their permanent teeth, making room for them to grow. Adult teeth would be much too large for babies and young children, so our bodies grow baby teeth first while our permanent teeth grow beneath our gums. 

When Should Children Lose Their Baby Teeth?

On average, children lose their first tooth around age six. This change happens as the permanent teeth “erupt,” causing the baby teeth to detach from the root, which reabsorbs, allowing the adult teeth to grow. 

What Causes Premature Loss of Baby Teeth?

Losing baby teeth too soon is usually caused by tooth decay, which has its own set of causes, including:

  • Cavities
  • Injury
  • Prolonged bottle-feeding
  • Prolonged breastfeeding
  • Continued pacifier use

Luckily, early tooth loss is often preventable with practices like twice-daily tooth brushing, daily flossing, and avoiding bad habits from developing. 

What Happens if My Child Loses a Baby Tooth Prematurely? 

If your child has experienced early tooth loss, be sure to seek orthodontics care in Green Bay, WI, at GB Family Dental. Without the placeholder, the permanent teeth below can drift, leading to crooked teeth and crowding as they grow. Addressing the issue as soon as possible is crucial to avoid this. 

Dr. Eggers-Ulve and Dr. Ulve will install a space maintainer over the gap to allow the surrounding teeth to keep their position and prevent drifting. 

Make Sure Your Child Has Healthy Teeth for Life 

Premature loss of baby teeth is preventable through good oral hygiene practices and avoiding bad habits like prolonged bottle-feeding. Still, it does happen, and Dr. Eggers-Ulve and Dr. Ulve are here to help.

For orthodontics care in Green Bay, WI, that will make your child feel comfortable and get their teeth back on track, GB Family Dental is your only choice. Call (920) 432-2961 today to schedule a visit!

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