Pediatric Dentistry

Pediatric dentists have completed an extra two to three years of specialized training after dental school, and are dedicated to the oral health of children from infancy through the teenage years. Children, pre-teens, and teenagers all need different approaches in dealing with their behavior, guiding their dental growth and development, and helping them avoid future dental problems. The pediatric dentist is best qualified to meet these needs.

Primary Teeth

It is very important to maintain the health of the primary teeth (baby teeth). Neglected cavities can and frequently do lead to problems which affect the developing permanent teeth. Primary teeth are important for (1) proper chewing and eating, (2) providing space for the permanent teeth and guiding them into the correct position, and (3) permitting normal development of the jaw bones and muscles. Primary teeth also affect the development of speech and add to an attractive appearance. While the front four teeth last until 6–7 years of age, the back teeth (cuspids and molars) aren’t replaced until age 10–13.

Eruption of Primary Teeth

Children’s teeth begin forming before birth. As early as 4 months, the first primary teeth (baby teeth) to erupt through the gums are the lower central incisors, followed closely by the upper central incisors. Although all 20 primary teeth usually appear by age 3, the pace and order of their eruption varies.

Permanent teeth begin appearing around age 6, starting with the first molars and lower central incisors. At the age of 8, you can generally expect the bottom four primary teeth (lower central and lateral incisors) and the top four primary teeth (upper central and lateral incisors) to be gone and permanent teeth to have taken their place. There is about a one to two year break from ages 8–10 and then the rest of the permanent teeth will start to come in. This process continues until approximately age 21.

Adults have 28 permanent teeth, or up to 32 including the third molars (or wisdom teeth).

Dental Emergencies
Infant Dental
Adolescent Dental