Your smile is a big part of your life. It’s part of the first impression for everyone you meet and a feature of nearly every picture you take. That’s why as a parent, you want to see your children grow up to have beautiful smiles of their own.
Does that mean you need to worry when your children’s baby teeth come in crooked? Here we’ll take a look at this and other common childhood dental issues to help you make the best possible decisions to give your child a happy, healthy smile for life.
Are Your Child’s Baby Teeth Crooked?
Baby teeth play an important role in adult dental health. They act as placeholders for permanent teeth. The shape and structure of your child’s permanent teeth are crucial to their overall health and development, as they provide the foundation for how they will speak, eat, and smile as they grow older.
Noticing that your baby’s first tooth is crooked can cause some serious worry as a parent. But spaced-out or crowded baby teeth aren’t always a reason to panic! In many cases, your child’s permanent teeth will be just fine, even if their smile is a bit irregular as a toddler.
Whether your child’s baby teeth are crooked or not, the most important thing to do is focus on excellent infant oral care. Watch for signs of infected teeth or gums and make sure their teeth are being cleaned after meals to prevent cavities.
How to Monitor Your Child’s Dental Health
Although it’s common for baby teeth to come in crooked, you need to be on the lookout for other issues during teething to help ensure your child’s adult teeth will be healthy. You should keep an eye out for some of the standard childhood dental concerns.
Check your baby’s mouth for common dental issues, such as:
- Missing teeth
- Crowded teeth
- Discolored teeth
- Too many teeth
If the baby teeth are crooked due to overcrowding in your child’s mouth, it could be a sign that they’ll have trouble with their permanent teeth coming in later in life. You should contact a trusted pediatric dentist to discuss your concerns with your child’s crowded teeth.
And be sure to clean your baby’s teeth regularly, as cavities can be more common in jaws that are overcrowded, whether your child’s baby teeth come in crooked or straight.
You might also want to schedule an appointment with your child’s dentist if you notice their baby teeth are crooked or if it seems as if they’re missing some teeth. Your pediatric dental professional can do a quick X-ray to make sure there are no teeth hiding under the gums or even place a space maintainer to prevent further issues as your child’s teeth grow.
If you’ve noticed that your child’s teeth seem to be a bit discolored, it’s probably a good sign that you need to start them on a more comprehensive childhood oral hygiene routine. The enamel of baby teeth is thinner than that of adult teeth, and that makes it much easier for plaque to accumulate on your child’s teeth.
You should limit the amount of sugar your baby is consuming and make sure you’re brushing their teeth at least twice a day, especially if their baby teeth are crooked, which can encourage additional oral decay if teeth aren’t being cleaned properly.
What to Do if Your Child’s Baby Teeth Are Crooked
If your baby’s first tooth is crooked, you don’t need to fear what it means for their future smile just yet. An infant’s jaw changes dramatically in the first years of life and permanent teeth typically grow in a very different way than baby teeth.
If you notice that your child’s baby teeth aren’t coming in straight, your best bet is to set any panic to the side and remember that most baby teeth are at least a little crooked, and it’s most likely that your baby’s teeth will straighten out all on their own.
But if you’re still concerned, it’s never a bad idea to speak with an experienced children’s dentist to go over the best options for your little one. There have been some cases where baby teeth coming in crooked are a sign of other problems, so it’s better to be safe than sorry!
Chances are your baby’s dentist will recommend simply monitoring your child’s smile for any indicators of trouble, such as tongue thrusting or thumb sucking, both of which can cause future problems with jaw alignment. This will help prevent your child from developing an overbite or underbite as they grow older.
Ensure Healthy Adult Smiles with Early Oral Care
Whether your child has crooked baby teeth crooked or an overcrowded smile, you can never really know how their smile will turn out as an adult until their permanent teeth erupt later in childhood. That’s why it’s crucial to set them up for dental health success as a baby.
Be sure to brush your baby’s teeth after every meal, and keep in mind that if your pediatric dentist does suggest some form of treatment for their teeth, in order to ward off any problems down the line, it’s usually more cost-effective and less invasive to address concerns when your child is still an infant.
Get in Touch with Your Questions
Do you still have questions about your baby’s crooked teeth? Our helpful staff is here to answer them with a quick call to the Children’s Dentistry office. If you’re in the Greater Las Vegas area, you can reach us by phone at (702) 832-0508. Find a pediatric dentist location near you, or check out our blog on kid’s dental health for even more info about getting your little one a happy, healthy smile!