Deciduous teeth is the formal name used for baby teeth, milk teeth, or primary teeth. Deciduous teeth develop during the embryonic stage of development and they become visible after 6 months of birth.
The deciduous teeth of a baby will start coming in when they are about 6 months old. The very first tooth to be visible is generally the central incisors also known as the middle front tooth – on the lower jaw. The second tooth to be visible is right next to the first, known as the second central incisor on the lower jaw.
The next four deciduous teeth to come in are generally the four upper incisors. They start erupting in about two months after the same tooth on the lower jaw develops.
Out of the 20 deciduous teeth, the second molars are usually the last ones to come in. They come in when the baby is about 2½ years old.
Some babies get their teeth early, some get them later because everyone is different. You should always consult your dentist for any concern or questions regarding your baby’s primary teeth. As suggested, the baby’s first dental visit should be before the age of 1, within 6 months after the first tooth comes in.
A child’s 20 deciduous teeth are replaced with 32 permanent teeth as they become an adult. They start losing their deciduous teeth around the age of 6. The first tooth to go is usually the first in, i.e. the central or middle incisors.
The second molar is the last deciduous tooth to go, around the age of 12.
The difference between the deciduous teeth and adult teeth-
“Deciduous teeth” or “baby teeth” are important for a child to chew and speak. Deciduous teeth save space in the child’s mouth for future permanent teeth. Deciduous tooth usually remains in the child’s mouth until an adult or permanent tooth underneath is ready to come in through the gums. As the permanent tooth starts to emerge, the deciduous tooth’s roots dissolve and the tooth becomes loose and gradually falls out.
If a child loses a tooth early before the permanent tooth is ready to emerge. Or is knocked accidentally, or is removed by the dentist because of some disease, space should be saved. For saving space, a space maintainer is inserted to take the deciduous tooth’s place until the permanent tooth is ready to erupt.
Deciduous teeth are very important for a child’s healthy mouth and growth. If you feel that your child is having any kind of problem with the emergence of primary or deciduous teeth, consult your dentist.