About Pediatric Dentistry
Why See a Pediatric Dentist
In the same way that pediatricians are trained to meet a child’s medical needs, pediatric dentists are specifically trained to address your child’s oral health. In addition to 4 years of college and 4 years of dental school, both Dr. Shannon and Dr. Capalbo have undergone an additional 2 years of specialty residency training. This extensive training equips them to deal with a multitude of medical and behavioral aspects, and qualifies them to treat special needs patients.
Why Are Baby Teeth Important
Primary or “baby” teeth are essential to your child’s everyday functions such as eating, speech development and appearance. A child who can chew easily, speak clearly and smile confidently is a happier child. Healthy primary teeth allow for normal development of the jawbones and muscles, save space for the permanent teeth and guide them into place. Decayed baby teeth can cause pain and abscesses, and the infection can spread to the permanent teeth. Remember, some primary molars are not replaced until age 10-14 years of age.
Typically, the first baby teeth that come into the mouth are the two bottom front teeth. You will notice this when your baby is about 6-8 months old. Next to follow will usually be the 2 upper front teeth. The remainder of your baby’s teeth will appear periodically in pairs until your child is 2 1/2 years old. We have a tooth eruption chart that we might review with you at your child’s first visit.
At around 2 1/2 years old your child should have all 20 baby teeth. Between the ages of 5 and 7 the first permanent teeth will begin to erupt. Some of the permanent teeth replace baby teeth and some don’t. Don’t worry if some teeth are a few months early or late as all children are different.