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Why Do We Have Two Sets of Teeth?

November 24, 2015

One of the most amazing parts of being a pediatric dentist is having the opportunity to teach kids about their oral health. Providing them with an extra education about how their teeth work and what they can do to keep them healthy is the most important thing we do as dentists. After all,  we’re setting them up for a lifetime of healthy smiles. As your child climbs to the ages of six and seven, you’ll notice those cute little baby teeth start falling out. As your child sheds these teeth they may be wondering what is happening to them and why on earth their teeth are falling out?! You can rest assure them it’s normal and here’s why.

We are born with no teeth, and then when we get to 6 months old our deciduous teeth come in. That’s a big word for baby, or primary teeth. This set of teeth is extremely important. They help us learn to speak, teach us how to eat and give our jaws some nice guidelines to develop around. One of the other important aspects of baby teeth is they give kids the opportunity to learn how to take care of their teeth, so that when their permanent teeth come in, they’re able to keep them for their entire life.

Humans grow, and as we grow so do our jaws. What once fit perfectly now isn’t so snug. Underneath our primary teeth our permanent teeth have been forming. The primaries hold the spaces for permanent teeth and when the jaw is big enough for the permanent teeth to come out, the push the primaries out of the way. The result are those funny gaps.

It’s no surprise or mystery why we have two sets of teeth. Our “trainer” teeth are there to help us grow and learn so that when our permanent teeth come in we know how to take care of them. It’s so important to take care of both sets of teeth even though one set is going to fall out. If you have any questions about how to teach your kids the important lessons of proper oral hygiene, swing on by today. We love teaching kids about their teeth and telling them all about how to keep them healthy.