We know all know what our teeth do for us, but do we know how they do it? Teeth play a pivotal roll in our speech, chewing food, digesting food and additional health factors. We take regular trips to the dentist for them, use them, and take care of them every day, so to better understand them will allow us to better care for them, as well. This will all help in setting the stage for optimal oral health.
So how do teeth develop? It starts with a set of primary teeth, more commonly known as baby teeth. These begin to form right around the second trimester of pregnancy, even though the
y may not begin to come out until a baby is around 6 months old. When they do begin to grow, they generally do so in a parallel manner, so the same tooth will grow in on either side. Roots will still form even once the tooth becomes visible, while the crown is the first thing to form fully. The primary set of teeth will be complete around 3 years of age.
From the age of 3 to about 6 years old, the baby teeth will remain in place. A second set of teeth will develop around 6 years old, when the primary teeth start to fall out. The second set is your permanent set of teeth. Replacing the initial set of 20 baby teeth will be a full set of 32 permanent, or adult, teeth. The adult set will take more time to come in than the baby teeth.
Both sets of teeth still require diligent oral care, and regular visits to the dentist. Getting young children in the habits of caring for their teeth will help ensure that they do so as adults.