Ladera Ranch, CA – Many parents often wonder if there are signs they should look for that may indicate if their child may require orthodontic treatment. There are a few things parents can be on the lookout for, one of which is when the child’s baby teeth fall out. While losing baby teeth too early or too late may be an indicator for orthodontic treatment, a visit with a board certified orthodontist is the only way to know for sure if your child could benefit from orthodontic treatment. The doctors at Ladera Orthodontics explain how losing baby teeth too late could mean your child may require braces in the near future.
“First, it’s important to remember that every child will lose his or her baby teeth on their own schedule,” says Dr. Robert Gire. “Just because your oldest child lost his first tooth at the age of four doesn’t mean that will be the case for your other children. The average age for losing the first tooth is six but it can happen anywhere between the ages of four and seven. The typical child will lose all of their baby teeth over the course of six years.”
More important than the age your child is when he or she loses the first tooth is to pay attention to the pattern in which the teeth fall out. The traditional order of losing teeth is as follows: the two bottom middle teeth, the two top middle (front) teeth, lower then upper lateral incisors (the ones next to the center ones), lower canines, then the upper and lower primary molars, with upper canines generally last.
If your child is a late bloomer and loses teeth later than their peers it may not be cause for concern. However, there are orthodontic issues that can arise from losing teeth later than normal. They include:
- Permanent teeth erupting behind baby teeth. If a baby tooth is particularly stubborn and doesn’t want to fall out, the permanent tooth may erupt behind it, making a second row of teeth farther back than where it would otherwise be. Usually the baby tooth will get the message and fall out soon after, but if it doesn’t your orthodontist or dentist may recommend removing the baby tooth.
- Crowding. When your child’s permanent teeth erupt while there are still a lot of baby teeth, this will create a crowded mouth that is trying to accommodate both the baby teeth and the larger permanent teeth.
“Baby teeth that aren’t lost on time can cause permanent teeth to come in crooked or crowded or in the wrong place,” says Dr. Reza Salmassian. “To determine the best course of action, it is important to schedule a consultation with an orthodontist. A board certified orthodontist can identify any underlying issues and address concerns associated with baby teeth falling out too late while also taking into consideration how orthodontic treatment can help. A physical examination as well as X-rays can give us a clear picture of any issues the child may be facing and help us create the best treatment plan to address them.”
If you have any concerns about how your child’s smile is taking shape or how his or her teeth are falling out, schedule a complimentary consultation with Ladera Orthodontics today. It is recommended that children visit an orthodontist for the first time at the age of seven. Call Ladera Orthodontics today at 949-272-8782.