Your child‘s each milestone is a moment of celebration, isn’t it? Be it their first steps, first words or even the first time their teeth erupt. Your baby’s first set of teeth are called milk or baby teeth and erupt when your child is about 6 months old. By the time your child turns 2-years-old, he/she has their complete set of milk teeth. But, the moment a child grows up, in 2-3 years more, most parents begin to wonder – when do milk teeth fall?
Before we answer that question, we need to understand a little more about what milk teeth or baby teeth are and their importance.
What are milk teeth?
When your child is about 6 months old, you will notice tiny milk teeth erupting in the lower front teeth region of their jaws. These are followed by subsequent eruption of other milk teeth. These teeth are also called baby teeth or deciduous teeth in dental terms.
The milk teeth help your child bite and chew as they grow up. Your child’s milk teeth are 20 in number. Though the normal age for the eruption of your child’s milk teeth is 6 months, this age varies with some babies developing milk teeth earlier or later than others.
As new parents, many parents have may queries about their child’s teeth such as “When do milk teeth fall”, “When should milk teeth fall off”, etc.
Why are milk teeth important?
Many parents believe that since milk teeth are going to fall out, why to take care of them. This is a common query that dentists are faced with in their daily practice.
Let’s set this clear- milk teeth are important! No matter when milk teeth fall, you must take care of your child’s milk teeth. Here are a few reasons you must know about why milk teeth are important before we get to when do milk teeth fall:
- Milk teeth give your child’s face a normal appearance
- Help in the development of speech in your child
- They reserve the space for permanent teeth
- Help your child’s nutrition as they help your child chew and bite their food
- Having healthy baby teeth makes sure your child’s permanent teeth also erupt healthily
When do milk teeth fall out?
Just like milk teeth erupt at different times and ages, they fall out at different times too. However, you will notice that the teeth fall in almost the same order that they erupted in to make way for the permanent teeth which are erupting from below them. Most kids begin to lose their milk teeth when they are in kindergarten. He/she might also be the first in class to lose a tooth!
Many a time, your child may also ask “when do milk teeth fall?” if his/her teeth haven’t begun falling out yet or when they see their schoolmates’ teeth falling out. Most kids lose their first teeth i.e. the lower front teeth, between ages 6-7 years. But, some kids lose their first teeth earlier or even after their 8th birthday!
If you and your child have any queries about when do milk teeth fall out, it is best to make a visit to your dentist’s office. Apart from ‘when do milk teeth fall?’, many of you might be wondering ‘why do milk teeth fall?’, isn’t it?
The milk teeth are interim teeth that help your child eat, drink, smile and grow normally. But, these teeth are not good enough to last a lifetime. Milk teeth are smaller in size, slightly weaker than the permanent teeth. Also, as your child grows up, the milk teeth will way too small for his/her face. Hence, the permanent teeth!
Permanent teeth are bigger in size, broader, stronger and erupt in the place of the milk teeth.
How do milk teeth fall out?
Apart from “when do milk teeth fall out?”, many parents and kids wonder how do milk teeth fall out? Will the permanent teeth fall out too? The answer is no! Your child’s permanent teeth will not fall like their milk teeth.
Milk teeth fall out when the permanent teeth under them start erupting. The erupting force of the permanent teeth causes the roots of the milk teeth to resorb or dissolve. This makes the milk teeth to loosen up and eventually, with no support of the root underneath them, they fall out.
However, in many instances, a child may have a missing permanent tooth. In this case, the milk teeth do not fall out because there is no pressure exerted by the permanent tooth underneath it. In such cases, the milk teeth are retained in your child’s mouth.
Milk teeth form a sort of a pathway for the eruption of the permanent teeth such that they are replaced by the permanent teeth. But, many a time, the permanent teeth do not follow the set path and erupt either behind or in front of the existing milk teeth. Even in such cases, parents and kids wonder “when do milk teeth fall out?” as the milk teeth are retained even after the permanent tooth has erupted.
- Dr. Reena Waghela Dental Director of Sabka dentist says “Milk teeth erupt when your baby is around 6 months old and by 2-3 years of age, all their milk teeth would have erupted.”
- Dr. Rupali Gujar Dental Director of Sabka dentist says “Milk teeth are important for your baby for many reasons and hence, must be taken good care of.”
- Dr. Zita Antao Dental Director of Sabka dentist says “Milk teeth pave the way for the eruption of permanent teeth.”