While most babies begin to get their first teeth right around the six-month milestone, it’s not uncommon for them to be delayed. How late is too late and when should you begin to be concerned that your child’s teeth have not erupted?

Around six months of age, most children begin to have teeth erupting from their gums. Starting with the front teeth, or central incisors, and then moving on to the lateral incisors, first molars, canines and second molars. This eruption is a very important part of your child’s normal development and generally speaking, by the time they are 3 years old, they will have all 20 of their teeth.

Delays in this developmental process are completely normal. We do like to see your child for their first dental exam before their first birthday, whether they have teeth or not, and at that time, our dentists will be able to make sure those things are growing below the surface of the gums.

Being a late bloomer can be a family trait, a heredity issue. Babies who are born prematurely or perhaps had a low birth weight may also experience a delay when it comes to tooth eruption. If your baby is 18 months old and still has not shown any signs of erupting teeth, please do call our office right away and schedule an exam. When teeth come in later than expected, it’s not generally a concern, but severely delayed development could be a sign of a more serious condition or a genetic abnormality.

For most children a delay in tooth eruption is not an issue, so enjoy that gummy smile a little longer! However, don’t forget to call and schedule your child’s first visit with our dentist before his/her first birthday! Teeth or no, we can’t wait to help your child start on the right path for long lasting good oral health!

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