Missing front teeth in kids is somewhat cute, more so if you’re a parent. The two front teeth coming off is a huge milestone among kids, as it signifies the end of the milk teeth stage. After that comes one more round of teething before the child gets a mouthful of permanent teeth that will now (hopefully) last for a lifetime. If you’re a first-time parent, or not well versed in matters permanent teeth, this blog post is here to help you out.


Various Types of Teeth 

Basically, children start getting primary teeth, commonly known as baby teeth, from the age of 6 months. By the age of 2 or 3 years, most children already have a full set of primary teeth, which are about 20 in number. From the age of 5, primary teeth start shedding one by one to be replaced by permanent teeth. These permanent teeth make up the majority of adult teeth, with a few wisdom teeth coming in when one reaches adulthood. In total, a fully grown adult human should have 32 teeth.

The main role of the primary or baby teeth is to help children chew various types of foods. However, baby teeth also help to prepare the jaw for permanent teeth, by holding space in the jaw and getting it used to having teeth. Baby teeth are usually whiter compared to permanent teeth, and are equally spread out among the top and bottom parts of the mouth. Similarly, adult teeth, which are a bit larger and darker than baby teeth, are arranged 16 on top and the other 16 at the bottom.


The Onset of Permanent Teeth

Permanent teeth start growing in a similar order as the primary teeth. Typically, the front bottom teeth come in first, followed by the front top and the back teeth. Nonetheless, the first teeth to come out during the teething process are the first to be replaced by the permanent teeth, even if they’re not necessarily the front teeth.

In most cases, children start losing their baby teeth when they start formal schooling, usually at age 5 or 6. By the time they hit 13 years, most children already have all their permanent teeth in place. The adult teeth are divided into different types as follows: 

  • 4 central incisors with the top and bottom parts having two each, 
  • 4 lateral incisors, 2 on top and 2 on the bottom. (These are basically the teeth between the central incisors and canines.)
  • 4 canine teeth
  • 8 molars – two on each quadrant of the mouth. Also, two molars just grow without replacing any primary teeth.

As mentioned earlier, the last teeth to grow are the wisdom teeth or third molars. They mainly start coming in from between age of 17-21. If you, or your kid happen to get some wisdom teeth, have a talk with your family dentist on the best oral hygiene standards to follow. Good dental hygiene and care is especially important to children, as it helps them avoid childhood dental complications and maintain happy smiles.


Looking for an experienced kid’s orthodontist in Orange County? Contact us today to schedule an appointment!