Edge browser users:
To download Word, Excel or PowerPoint files please right-click on the file you wish to download, and select 'Save link as...'

Do baby teeth matter?

Blog Author Charlotte Waite

Blog Date 09/01/2019

BDA England Community Dental Services Committee Chair, Charlotte Waite, features in this BBC World Service video about why baby teeth do matter:

Some interesting baby teeth facts

1. Humans have two sets of teeth

We have adult teeth, which usually come through about the age of 6 years-old and baby teeth, which come through around 6 months.


Baby teeth are important as they allow them to eat nutritious, solid, food for their development and communicate with us, as well as providing a space maintainer, ready for the adult teeth, 32 of them. 


Baby teeth have wider roots than adult teeth so that the adult teeth can develop underneath them.

2. Most mammals have baby teeth

Dogs and cats get baby teeth in the first few weeks, and lose within them first few months.


Vertebrates like fish and reptiles have baby teeth too. And they come through, on an ingoing and outgoing basis throughout their life.


3. Baby teeth don’t matter



Tooth decay or the removal of teeth can have big impact on children's emotional and physical development.

It’s important to brush teeth twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste, limit sugar to mealtimes and take children to visit the dentist regularly.


4. Baby teeth contain stem cells

In the future stem cells may be used to generate parts of the body that have been damaged, although the science is not yet proven. 

Basically, baby teeth are essential: take care of them. 

Charlotte Waite, Chair
BDA England Community Dental Services Committee

Campaigning for better oral health

We campaign on a range of issues for better working lives for dentists and we work to improve the oral health of the nation. 
Through our policy and campaigning work, we ensure that the concerns of all sections of the profession are raised and that dentists' voices are heard at a national level: join us.