The Development of the Mouth and Teeth

What do you actually know about your child’s teeth? We’ve put together a primer for you so you can take the best care of your child’s teeth.

How Children’s Teeth Develop

It might seem like children’s teeth come in all of a sudden, but in reality teeth begin to develop as early as the sixth week of pregnancy. At this time, the basic tooth substance forms. Around three or four months, the hard tissue that surrounds children’s teeth develops. Next, after birth and usually around the six month milestone, the tooth will poke through the gum — you know these as baby teeth.

To promote proper teeth development, pregnant women should eat healthy and avoid certain medications which can discolor a child’s teeth, including tetracycline. By eating foods high in phosphorus, vitamin C, and vitamin D, you can make sure your child gets everything needed for healthy teeth.

Every child is different, which can frustrate parents who are waiting on a child to develop their baby teeth. Usually, you will expect the baby teeth to show anywhere from age six months to twelve months. We’ve noticed that female children get their teeth before boys, usually. Regardless of gender, your child should have the majority of their baby teeth by 33 months.

In case you’re wondering what order teeth come in, here’s what you can usually expect. The two central incisors come in first. These are two teeth on the lower jaw.

They are followed by the upper incisors — their counterparts on the upper jaw. Children have four upper incisors.

After the incisors come a few molars, and then the last incisors on the bottom erupt. Your child will then get more molars.

Next up are the cuspids, which are the pointed teeth. Last to come in are the four remaining molars.

When all the baby teeth come in, there are usually spaces between the teeth. The wiggle room provides space for your child’s permanent teeth, which are larger.

The teething process is slow, with most children getting an average of one tooth per month. Teething can be painful, so children will often fuss. If your child’s teeth are not coming in as quickly as their peers, don’t worry. We recommend that parents wait around one year before coming in to visit our pediatric dentist. If your child doesn’t have their teeth around the 18 to 24 months mark, we will make sure your child’s teeth are developing as they should.

At around age six, your child’s baby teeth will begin to fall out — central incisors first, followed by molars, then cuspids. When all the adult teeth come in, your child will have 32 permanent teeth.

Would you like an appointment to clean your child’s teeth or check on the development of baby teeth? At Weninger Dentistry, we offer family dental care in a clean and comfortable environment. Reserve your appointment at our Tampa dental clinic online or by calling us: 813-501-6864.