Why Baby Teeth Are So Important

mom: When do babies start teething? Until when have all baby teeth passed?

Miss Dr. Riffat Shaheen: On average, the first baby teeth come  at 6-8 months, the last at 3 years. But every child has his or her own timetable, which means that the first teeth can be there from birth or vice versa. The timing of when which tooth comes is less important than the order is approximately correct.

Why Baby Teeth important

baby teeth

mom: How can parents help their toddler during tooth rupture, which causes many babies to have discomfort?

Miss Dr. Riffat Shaheen: attention, distraction … with every baby it is other little things that help  to forget the unpleasant moments . It is important that you do not want to distract the baby with food, and certainly not with sweets. First, it is bad for the teeth and second, the child is “programmed”: “When I am in pain, I am consoled with food”. There are tooth gels that relieve the pain, but you should make sure that cream or gel is unsweetened, otherwise you greet the freshly baked, yet little resistant tooth with its biggest “enemy”, the sugar. Some of these gels contain a local anesthetic. Not all parents wish for their baby already “medicines” in this situation.  Some parents swear by amber beads. For this I can not make any statement as a “school doctor”, that belongs more in the alternative medicine. There are experts who say that babies can get stuck in the chain and endanger themselves (suffocation). The baby wears such a necklace best when it is awake and watched by the parents.

mom:  What tasks besides the chewing of food have the milk teeth? Why do the milk teeth need to be well cared for? 

Miss Dr. Riffat Shaheen  tasks are the chewing of food, the placeholder function for the permanent teeth, but also they take over a function in the formation of sounds  and last but not least they have an “aesthetic” function. Again and again I experience how difficult it is for the parents to see their child without front teeth for several years (. The child is usually very good with it!

mom:  How and when should parents care for or brush their teeth? When should children attend a dental check-up for the first time?

Miss Dr. Riffat Shaheen:  Dental care must be done from the first tooth! Whether this takes place initially with a diaper or a child toothbrush, is less important, the main thing the tooth / teeth are cleaned! I recommend that you should take the toothbrush if possible, so that the baby gets used to the “new device” right from the start. As a rule of thumb we recommend: 1 x per day in the first year of life, 2 x in the second year, and 3 times a day from the age of 3 to brush your teeth. Best always with a dollop of children’s toothpaste. Some toothbrushes also have a dosing aid (colored bristles the diameter of a small pea, just as much as you should use toothpaste). It is quite normal that the little one in his development wants to try his effect also on the parents and goes through phases where it clearly gives his parents to understand brushing your teeth is the very last thing in the world. Many parents then have concerns about forcing the child to clean. Of course, it’s better if everything is calm and harmonious, but in this point, it is worthwhile to give in no way. Daily brushing is extremely important!  Treating the dentist in toddlerhood is certainly less enjoyable than being educated by parents for daily dental care. I know, this is easier said than done. But do not give up, it’s worth it! An aid in this time can be a somewhat funny-looking toothbrush: the Superbrush, she has U-shaped bristles, ie that it applies both to the outside, on the top and on the inside of the teeth at once. It is new in the trade (pharmacy / drugstore) available, although we know it for years. This toothbrush is also recommended for children who like to brush their teeth. A great advantage here: you have the teeth cleaned incredibly fast!
We recommend that children are helped to brush their teeth at least once a day, at least until the age of 8 (evening would be ideal). The motor skills of the children are still in development and it does not take long for the children to realize that they also have internal tooth surfaces. As a re-cleaning is simply indispensable. The first check at the dentist we recommend at the age of 18 months or in other words, when the first molar has come. Often the baby can go along with the older siblings or together with the parents at the examination date. The child also sees that other family members are showing their teeth and that there is nothing to fear. Depending on whether the dentist can already detect plaque on the maxillary anterior teeth,

mom:  How often should you change a toothbrush? Which preventive measures can parents additionally undertake?

Miss Dr. Riffat Shaheen:  Children and adults alike can “consume” a toothbrush at different speeds. If the bristles are no longer straight, not enough good oral hygiene can take place. The toothbrush should be changed even with small deformations or at the latest after approx. 3 months.
Various studies show that brushing is no use unless some fluoride is involved. Ideal for children up to 6 years is a toothpaste with reduced fluoride content (children’s toothpastes). Thereafter, “normal” toothpastes should be used. Advantageous is the one that tastes best. Then clean your child’s teeth long enough. Since 1980, we have had the opportunity in Switzerland to prepare our food with fluoridated salt. An ideal way to give all family members the necessary amount of fluoride. Since the introduction of the fluoridated salt, fluoride tablets are generally unnecessary. I would only deliver these after consultation with her dentist to the children.

mom:  tooth decay is also very dangerous on deciduous teeth, why?

Miss Dr. Riffat Shaheen:  When baby teeth at  caries Unfortunately, there is no natural way back. The caries progresses continuously until the tooth decay on the tooth nerve and causes inflammation and thus pain. In some cases abscesses can occur where the child’s face in the region of the inflamed tooth swells so much that the eye often agrees. An ugly situation, as a rule, there is only the pulling of the tooth plus possibly additional antibiotics. Often children in this terrible situation are no longer treatable, so we first have to resort to the antibiotics and to be able to pull the tooth after the inflammation, the pain and the swelling subsided. In any case, this is a situation that everyone wants to prevent. That is why it is  important to mend even milk teeth even if they fail once. The molar teeth do not fall off until they are about 11 years old, until then the deciduous tooth must keep the space free for the person who remains. An early loss of the posterior teeth often leads to limited space, which has an orthodontic treatment (clasp) result or the orthodontic treatment, for example, because of an otherwise too narrow jaw, even more difficult. An  inflammation of the deciduous tooth  and its surroundings by caries also often leads to a disruption of the formation of the permanent tooth. This is already formed in the earliest infancy under the deciduous tooth. Another reason to take care of the milk teeth thoroughly.

mom: In other words  , you should also have dental check- ups with infants who already have dark discolorations on the milk teeth.

Miss Dr. Riffat Shaheen:  Yes, absolutely, once too early to see the dentist. Emergency situations are always unpleasant. But watch out, do not just look for dark discolorations, the very first signs of  tooth decay  are whitish chalk stains, which are often unrecognizable by the layman without direct light on the tooth and air drying. But there are also whitish spots that have nothing to do with tooth decay. Therefore: A short check is certainly smarter than waiting until it hurts! Unfortunately, we have to notice a drastic increase in toddler caries in Switzerland! Therefore, we also recommend the early first control with 18 months to make (at the latest, however, at the breakthrough of the first molar teeth).

mom:  What can parents do to prevent tooth decay?

Miss Dr. Riffat Shaheen:  The three pillars of healthy teeth are:  oral hygiene , proper nutrition and fluoride. It is sufficient that only one element is missing or insufficiently applied. We see that today it is difficult to keep a grip on the point of “proper nutrition” due to the oversupply of food and ready-to-serve foods. . This decalcification will be made up for calcification once the saliva (or tooth cleaning) has neutralized acid formation. The calcification takes more time than the decalcification, therefore the motto:  “REST IN MOUTH HOLDS TEETH HEALTHY”, It is important that children and babies can not constantly suck on sweet drinks (even milk with softened biscuits are dangerous!). Of course, water is not a problem. After snacking it is recommended to clean the teeth (the child is allowed to do this on his own) or at least to rinse the mouth with water or even better with a fluoride rinse (Caution, the fluoride rinse should only be used by children who are also completely using the remedy spit). Milk or cheese, sugarless chewing gum or toothpaste sweets are also able to neutralize the environment in the oral cavity. As already mentioned, toddler caries is on the increase in Switzerland. Reason for this is usually the Schoppen. This problem is also called  “bottle caries”, Babies and toddlers should be accustomed right from the start to only drink water in between. A permanent diet is not necessary. In addition, it is difficult to get the child used to solid foods when they are constantly satiated by high-calorie drinks. The  quickest way to build caries is when the child  drinks  a bottle of  sweet drinks at night allowed to have in bed. Even the cow’s milk can cause damage, as much less saliva is formed in the mouth and the milk sugar can not be washed away. Already this small amount of sugar is enough to cause caries. I know that some mothers will now say that their child has always had milk in bed at night and has never had tooth decay. Why there are no holes in some children and in others anyway, can only be suspected. Some children may drink the bottle empty at the beginning of the night, while others drink sip wise throughout the night. This could make the difference. In any case, I would play it safe and offer the child  between brushing and sleeping nothing more out of the water! It is also best to accustom your child to the fact that there are sweets only after meals. As teeth are brushed after eating, no negative effect on the teeth is to be expected and their child also comes to sweets, which he usually loves by nature.

mom:  When will the first permanent teeth break through?

Miss Dr. Riffat Shaheen:  Again,  every child has its rhythm . If the deciduous teeth came later, the permanent teeth will come later. On average, the first break through with about 6 years. But please do not be disappointed if your child is a “late bloomer” on this point. Presumably, it is more advantageous to get the teeth a little later, because then the mouth is already a bit bigger and the child’s skill is more developed, in order to take good care of it. The first teeth are the  two lower central incisors  and the  first molars that often come in hiding. Only the dentist makes child and parents attentive to the appearance of this. Since these break through completely behind the first tooth and are not at the “height” of the last deciduous teeth from the outset, the toothbrush must be angled so that you can clean the grinding surfaces, which are lined with the beautiful fine recoveries (turn off the toothbrush, so that the toothbrush style draws the corner of the mouth to the ear). The  lower permanent incisors  are often already in the mouth when the milk teeth are still stuck. If the distance to the deciduous teeth is only 1-3 mm, it is quite normal. If both teeth (old and new) persist for more than 2 weeks, it is worth visiting the dentist to make sure that everything is alright.

mom:  How should schoolchildren care for their teeth?

Miss Dr. Riffat Shaheen:  School children should clean their teeth 3 times a day with a toothbrush and toothpaste (no more child toothpaste) Once a day, the parents should help with the cleaning – plaster or clean. This needs some persuasion with certain children, but it’s worth it! Ideally, you only spit out the toothpaste / saliva foam after brushing your teeth, rinsing is disadvantageous because the valuable fluoride is washed away again. In addition, it would be highly recommended to brush the teeth once a week with a fluoride gel (only available in pharmacies because of a higher fluoride content). Therefore, this gel should be used only in children who spit out the toothpaste / saliva foam completely. This is generally possible at the latest from kindergarten. From time to time the use of a plaque stain tablet is still entertaining for the children and shows them where their weaknesses in the dental care are: Positively mediated, This can be very motivating for the children. Unfortunately, the dental plaque is usually white and not recognizable to the layman. If plaque has been lying on a tooth for a very long time, or again and again in the same place, a whitish spot forms on the enamel: the first visible sign of caries. The dentist can judge whether this decalcification can be calcified, or whether it already requires a filling. However, decalcification mainly takes place between the teeth, where the dentist’s eye can not reach, so radiographs for early caries detection are required every 1 to 2 years at the latest from the first class. If plaque has been lying on a tooth for a very long time, or again and again in the same place, a whitish spot forms on the enamel: the first visible sign of caries. The dentist can judge whether this decalcification can be calcified, or whether it already requires a filling. However, decalcification mainly takes place between the teeth, where the dentist’s eye can not reach, so radiographs for early caries detection are required every 1 to 2 years at the latest from the first class. If plaque has been lying on a tooth for a very long time, or again and again in the same place, a whitish spot forms on the enamel: the first visible sign of caries. The dentist can judge whether this decalcification can be calcified, or whether it already requires a filling. However, decalcification mainly takes place between the teeth, where the dentist’s eye can not reach, so radiographs for early caries detection are required every 1 to 2 years at the latest from the first class.

mom:  What should be considered when children need to wear braces?

Miss Dr. Riffat Shaheen:  Actually, the rule also applies here:  oral hygiene , proper nutrition and  fluoride must be present in the right amount. A lack of one element can not be made up for by the other two. A brace makes it easier for food remains to get stuck in the mouth, so enhanced and accurate oral hygiene is important. Your hamstring dentist or his prophylactic assistant will choose with you the appropriate oral hygiene tools and methods to prevent tooth decay in this more difficult situation. By choosing “smarter” snacks, you can also make an important contribution to caries-free teeth preservation. We recommend rather non-sweet and non-sticky snacks and snacks: a ham or cheese bread, fruits (less bananas and dried fruit),

mom:  A question most parents ask themselves: When should the thumb sucking stop or the Nuggi be banished from the nursery?

Miss Dr. Riffat Shaheen: If your child’s teeth have to get used to a nuggets or thumbs  between their front teeth for too long  , a so-called open bite sets in. This means that when the child bites, only the back teeth bite each other, reaching the anterior teeth not each other. This malposition is very persistent and often not easy for the orthodontist to treat. It is best to ensure that your child  does not need the nuggets or thumbs from the age of three! Whenever possible, put the nugget out of the child’s field of vision, agree with it initially that it only needs the nugget at night, or at moments when it needs comfort. For example, the Nuggi should only be used in the room. Over time, your child will be ready to give the nuggi to the Samichlaus, or to “buy” / deal with it from the goddess. The last train to set off the nuggets is at the time of the eruption of the permanent anterior teeth. Whether the denture will recover spontaneously is not guaranteed.

mom:  Can you give parents a tip on dental care insurance ?

Miss Dr. Riffat Shaheen:  Today  dental care insurance is  very popular. Clarify exactly whether an insurance is worthwhile for you. Each insurance has different premiums and other benefits. Sometimes it would be worthwhile to pay the premiums to a separate account and use it if necessary. If your child does not need a brace, they can afford something else. In any case, you can only take out the insurance if the dentist does not already find any discrepancies. That’s why you better insure your child early, preferably even in the toddler age.

Updated: February 7, 2018 — 4:58 pm