Tooth Development

Baby to Adult Tooth Development: What’s Normal?

Parents often have many questions about tooth development. When can you expect your baby’s first tooth to appear? When will his or her first tooth fall out? How much money should the tooth fairy bring?

Tooth Development

While you may have to make your own decision on the final question, you can find answers to the rest right here.

When Do Teeth First Develop?

When your baby is between 6 and 12 months old, his or her initial baby teeth will begin to erupt. Typically, the first tooth to come in is the central incisor on the lower jaw. The second tooth will usually be the second central incisor, also on the lower jaw.

Once your baby’s teeth start developing, you can usually expect about one tooth per month to make an appearance. Typically, the upper jaw will copy the lower jaw. Once one group shows up on the lower jaw, the same group on the upper jaw will follow.

By 33 months, all of your toddler’s 20 initial teeth should be in place. It’s normal for children to have small spaces in between baby teeth — this means they will have space for adult tooth development.

When Do Adult Teeth Begin to Erupt?

Around age 6, tooth development enters the next stage. Your child’s teeth will begin to fall out, beginning with the central incisors. At the same time, adult molars will begin to erupt.

In total, by age 12, your child should have lost all primaries and have gained an additional eight teeth — their first and second molars. The third molars, also called the wisdom teeth, usually don’t begin to erupt until age 17.

Of course, this tooth development schedule can vary based on individual and family history.

What You Should Look For

As a parent, you are always concerned with your children’s well-being, and that includes their oral health. What’s normal and what’s not? When should you have your child see a dentist for a professional exam?

First of all, the best way to maintain your children’s oral health is to encourage them to brush and floss daily. You also should bring them to the dentist every six months for an exam and cleaning.

Beyond regular upkeep, whenever your child complains of pain in the jaw, teeth or gums, it’s a good idea to see a professional. You also should make an appointment if you notice your child is developing extra teeth, beyond the initial 20 primary teeth or 32 secondary teeth.

Also, if your child’s teeth are more than a year delayed in developing, call your dentist or oral surgeon to discuss your concerns.

Northeast Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery is always there when you need professional, qualified advice on all topics related to your child’s tooth development — call today to begin a partnership to improve your child’s oral health.