Your baby’s smile can instantly lift up your mood and energy to continue striving as a parent. But what if you notice the baby teeth coming in crooked? Is it something that you should be concerned about? Let’s find out the implication of crooked teeth in babies and what you can do about it, so you no longer have to worry.
Can babies’ first teeth come in crooked?
Parents are usually concerned about how their baby’s first teeth will grow, especially when it comes to their safety and appearance.
Your baby’s first teeth will typically emerge anytime beginning 6 months of age. The first ones to appear is usually the two lower front teeth, which are more properly termed as the lower central incisors.
It is important to note that these two first teeth often appear a bit crooked and slightly resembling a letter “v”. This is completely normal and there’s no reason to worry about it.
The set of 20 primary or “baby” teeth will often be complete by the time your baby reaches 2 and a half years of age. Though most parents envision their baby’s teeth to be perfectly straight and even, it is usually not the case. You may notice slight unevenness and they may not come out in perfect proportions. However, it doesn’t mean that your baby’s soon-to-be permanent teeth will also appear uneven.
Some parents may also see that their baby’s primary teeth have small gaps in between. According to a dentist, this can be a good thing. This will allot more space once the much bigger, permanent teeth will erupt. In fact, having a bit more space in your baby’s first set of teeth is much better than having a crowded baby teeth. People who have a crowded primary teeth when they were young often develop crowded permanent teeth later on, which will soon need orthodontic braces to be corrected.
However, there are also some cases that babies may have malformations in their teeth and mouth. If you’re really concerned that his baby teeth growing in crooked, seeing a dentist is the next best thing to consider so that proper assessment can be done.
What causes baby teeth to come in crooked?
Though babies may have slight misalignment in their baby teeth, it’s understandable for you to get concerned when the teeth obviously begin to grow abnormally. If you’re wondering why your baby’s teeth are coming in crooked, here are some possible reasons.
Putting pressure in the mouth
Simple childhood practices like thumb sucking and prolonged use of pacifiers or milk bottle can cause crooked baby teeth in infants. These habits put undue pressure in your baby’s mouth that can often push and cause the baby front teeth coming in crooked. Otherwise, this pressure may force the lower teeth to grow inwards. These practices may also misalign some teeth from the rest.
Your baby’s inherited genes may also play a role in the way their baby teeth will appear. Sometimes, a baby may have gotten her mom’s smaller-sized jaw and her dad’s larger-sized teeth. Because of this, the emerging teeth will compete in the smaller space and end up appearing awkward, crowded, and crooked.
A baby’s jaw is normally small and still growing. In some cases, parents may overlook this part and get quickly concerned about the way their baby’s teeth are growing. This is also something to consider when your baby’s teeth seem to be slightly crooked and overcrowded.
Some sleeping positions, like lying on the stomach, may place additional pressure on your baby’s cheeks and gums. If your baby is often fond of this position while sleeping, it may be a reason why your baby’s teeth is coming in crooked. The misalignment may begin unnoticeable at first, and then gets more evident as your baby grows.
Tumor or cyst
An abnormal growth of cells in the oral cavity may also push out the upper teeth or cause the baby bottom teeth coming in crooked. Though this one rarely happens, a suspected tumor or cyst in the mouth will need to be checked by your doctor or dentist immediately.
What can I do if my baby’s teeth are coming in crooked?
Because genetics play a huge role on how your baby’s teeth will appear, crooked teeth in babies may not be completely prevented. However, knowing the other common causes of crooked teeth in babies, you can do some things to minimize the chances that your baby’s teeth will grow misaligned. You may consider the following tips:
- Minimize thumb sucking habits once your baby’s first tooth erupts.
- Gradually wean off your baby from the pacifier or bottle beginning 6 to 12 months of age.
- Reposition your baby if he often falls asleep on his tummy or on his side.
- Encourage healthy dental habits like brushing his teeth and minimizing intake of sweet foods.
- Visit the dentist once your baby’s first tooth erupts.
Crooked teeth in babies is often harmless, but since it can give a huge impact on how a baby looks like, it may be something that a lot of parents worry about. Most of the time, the misalignment is simply due to excessive pressure in your baby’s teeth and gums. So if you want to minimize the risk of your baby teeth coming out crooked, it is best to gradually wean him off his bottle, pacifier, or the habit of thumb sucking once his first tooth erupts. If you have other concerns with your baby’s teeth, it is best to seek advice from your dentist.
This article is for informational purposes only and should not be considered medical advice. Always consult with a doctor or licensed medical professional before making any medical decisions.