Milk Teeth

The milk teeth also referred to as baby teeth or temporary teeth erupt between 6 months to 3 years and are shed between the ages of 12 to 14 years.

Despite the relatively short time they spend in the mouth, milk teeth are of paramount importance. Baby teeth allow children to eat easily, improve how they swallow, and aid the way they pronounce words. Aesthetically milk teeth help give kids a beautiful smile and above all, they reserve the space for the final teeth to erupt and allow for the growth of bone around the teeth.

There are so many roles that milk teeth play in the oral health of children and Bellevue dental clinic encourages parents and adults to ensure that its care is not underrated.

Here are some of the importance of it:

Girl Eating


As soon as they erupt, the incisors are used in the process of cutting food. The first molars will follow, and the child will be able to start chewing.

The canines that appear after the first molars will allow the child to pluck food and to shred meat. When the second molars appear, the child will be able to chew and grind better.

Pronunciation Elocution Phonation

A child will start speaking when the milk teeth will start their eruption. The tongue, the lips, the jaws, vocal cords, and the teeth play a fundamental role in proper pronunciation. For a good pronunciation of F, V, S, T, we use our teeth. For example, to be able to pronounce the sound “TH”, the tongue must be in contact with the upper incisors and canines.

To be able to make an “F” or a “V” sound, the upper teeth must be in contact with the lower lip. If one misses some teeth, it will be difficult to pronounce V, S, T, F.

While shedding, children can become embarrassed and not want to speak. So understanding of the milk teeth’ imperfections can aid parents in encouraging the child to not worry and keep trying as their permanent teeth are on the way.

Milk Teeth


Unsightly teeth could have an emotional impact on a child.  Having a not very appealing facial aesthetic can have an impact on the psychosocial development of a child and teenagers.

Dental flaws can affect their relationship with their peers. Such children will not smile, or they will cover their mouth with their hands while speaking.

Misaligned teeth, discoloured teeth, missing teeth can also lead to loss of confidence. So proper care of the milk teeth is also important to the happiness of the child.

Bone Growth

The presence and use of the milk teeth stimulate the growth of the bone surrounding the teeth. Orthodontics and dentists, therefore, seek to preserve the temporary teeth as long as possible until their normal shedding.

Sometimes, the permanent front teeth overlap when they erupt. To be able to keep all the permanent teeth later, the neighbouring baby tooth should not be removed by a professional dentist in Abuja at Bellevue dental clinic. This is due to the fact that removing the baby tooth will stunt the growth of the bone and reduce the space for the adult teeth.

Young Boy

Reserving Space for the Adult Teeth

The milk tooth also plays a key role in reserving space for the underlying permanent teeth.

When a child loses a milk tooth before the normal time, the teeth around can move and occupy a part of the space left. The adult tooth that was supposed to replace the missing one will start germination in a wrong position or will not erupt.

Missing a tooth or non-treated caries will reduce the length of the dental arch. This will create crowding of the teeth.

When a tooth falls off too early or must be extracted before its normal shedding time, bone growth is blocked, and the eruption of the adult tooth underneath can be stunted, and the chewing function can be impaired.

However, in certain cases, it may be necessary to remove baby teeth before they fall off on their own:

  • When there is an abscess in the baby tooth that cannot be treated, the tooth must be removed to avoid the infection get to the underlying germ.
  • If the adult tooth, while still in the bone, is taking the place of another tooth or simply staying in the bone.
  • Family inheritance where milk teeth never fall off naturally.
  • The baby tooth is fractured.
  • The tooth is infected, and the risk is too great that it will infect the final tooth.
  • The germination of the final tooth is late.
  • If the baby tooth does not fall off and is forcing the final tooth to come out forward or backwards.


Bellevue dental offers Children at ages of under 12 a free consultation once a year to see a dentist at Bellevue dental clinic. This annual practice will help the child, parent and dentist monitor the eruption of their teeth and give professional advice on how to keep their milk teeth healthy and ready to give way for their permanent teeth.

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