What you need to know about natal teeth!
Teething is frequently a part of a baby’s growth during the first year of life. The first teeth typically sprout in newborns between the ages of 4 and 7 months. The first teeth to pierce the gums are the central incisors, which are located on the bottom front.
Although most newborns don’t get their first teeth until several months after birth, some babies are born with one or more teeth. They’re known as natal teeth. A baby gets its first tooth at 1 out of every 2,000 births.
The teeth that a newborn possesses at birth are known as natal teeth. The teeth’s roots may not be fully grown and may be weak.
Not many teeth are present at birth. The neonatal teeth, which emerge in the mouth of the newborn within the first month of life, are different from these teeth.
Most natal teeth are just typical primary teeth that erupt quite early. However, a sizable portion is not.
A full set of twenty primary teeth includes these, however, occasionally children erupt with more than twenty. These extra teeth are known as supernumerary teeth. Less than 10% of a person’s natal teeth are extra teeth.
A pediatric dentist can determine whether a baby tooth is extra by using dental X-rays.
Baby Born With Teeth: Natal Teeth Causes
Photo by Jonathan Borba
No known cause for newborn teeth exists. They might, however, be more prevalent in children who have particular health conditions that limit growth.
It can be mysterious, but certain situations can increase the likelihood that a baby will have teeth. Infants who have a cleft lip or palate may have these teeth. Babies who are born with anomalies in the dentin (the calcified tissues that help teeth grow) may also have natal teeth.
It may be the result of underlying medical issues. They include the following syndromes:
- Sotos syndrome,
- Ellis-van Creveld syndrome (chondroectodermal dysplasia),
- Hallermann-Streiff syndrome (oculomandibulofacial syndrome with hypotrichosis), and
- Jadassohn-Lewandowsky syndrome (congenital pachyonychia)
The most common medical issue is cleft lip and palate.
One study found that 30 per cent of infants with bilateral cleft lip and palate and 5 per cent of infants with unilateral cleft lip and palate had natal or neonatal teeth, respectively.
Another study found that natal or neonatal teeth were present in 2 per cent of newborns with unilateral cleft lip and palate and 11% of infants with bilateral cleft lip and palate.
Types of Natal Teeth
Although some infants do have teeth, the situation isn’t always clear-cut. There are four different types of natal teeth. Your baby’s condition can be determined by your doctor if:
- A few root systems with fully developed, albeit loose, crowns connected.
- Teeth that are fully rootless and are loose
- Teeth that have just started to emerge from the gums
- Signs that the gums are ready for teeth to cut through them
Most cases of babies born with teeth only involve one tooth. Having several teeth from birth is even less common. The lower front teeth are the ones that are used the most, followed by the upper ones. Less than 1% of infants who have natal teeth have molars at birth.
Natal Teeth vs Neonatal Teeth
Image Source: iStock
In contrast to natal teeth, which are present at birth, neonatal teeth appear within the first 30 days of a baby’s life. Due to the similarities in the issues that natal and neonatal teeth present, they are frequently examined and treated jointly. Both natal and neonatal teeth are covered by the information that follows.
Natal Teeth Superstition
Babies born with teeth have long been associated with a variety of legends and superstitions.
For instance, while the Chinese saw the presence of teeth during birth as a bad omen, the Malaysians thought it was a sign of good fortune. Its existence was considered to guarantee English global conquest.
Natal Teeth: Risks and Complications
In addition to a few medical conditions, there are a few risk factors that could increase a baby’s likelihood of being born with teeth. Approximately 15 per cent of newborns with teeth have close relatives who were also born with teeth. They include siblings and parents.
While data on the connection between gender and natal teeth is contradictory, it seems that girls are more likely than boys to be born with teeth.
Malnutrition during pregnancy could also be another risk factor.
There are a few potential problems with a baby having teeth during birth, including the possibility that the newborn will accidentally swallow the tooth, feeding issues, and tongue injuries.
According to Dr Greg Grillo of Express Dentist, complications are rare. If they are sharp, the baby’s tongue might feel pain. If they are particularly slack, there is a chance that they could come loose from the gums and impede the airway.
Dr Margaret Madonian, a pediatric and special needs dentist, claims that problems with breastfeeding are common with a baby born with teeth.
She underlines that breastfeeding mothers and their babies might both suffer from teething during pregnancy. Premature or neonatal tooth emergence can damage breastfeeding mothers’ nipples and make it difficult for newborns to effectively nurse.
If one of these issues is being caused by a tooth, Dr Madonian suggests speaking with a pediatric dentist. The procedures could include smoothing or glueing the teeth if they are sufficiently solid and causing feeding issues, or they could involve extracting the natal teeth if they are at risk of aspiration.
Neonatal Teeth Treatment
Photo by Isaac Taylor
Normally, untreated natal teeth are not removed. Your doctor may suggest having your child’s loose, rootless teeth surgically removed if they are present at birth. These baby teeth throughout pregnancy can improve your baby’s chances of developing:
- Swallowing the dislodged tooth unintentionally could result in choking
- Feeding problems
- Tongue abrasions
- Mother’s injuries experienced during nursing
Baby Teeth Upon Birth Removal
A loose tooth will be examined with an X-ray to see whether a robust root structure is present. Removal might be necessary if such a structure doesn’t exist.
The course of treatment will be influenced by your child’s symptoms, age, and general health. It will also depend on how bad the issue is.
In other instances, baby teeth may be loose because the roots haven’t fully formed. After that, the teeth could be pulled out. As a result, there is less chance that your youngster will unintentionally have a tooth in his or her airways. It might even be necessary to extract the teeth if they are causing damage to your child’s tongue.
Natal Teeth Management
Natal teeth that are not removed may require additional care and supervision. In teeth with defective enamel at birth, cavities are more likely to form. A pediatric dentist can teach you how to brush your child’s teeth correctly and can also help you keep an eye out for tooth rot.
Natal teeth and neonatal teeth can be mysterious, but certain situations can increase the likelihood that a baby will have teeth. If your baby is born with teeth, it is important to speak with a pediatric dentist to ensure that there are no complications.
This article was written by Margaux Dolores and republished with permission from theAsianparent Philippines.
- Consultant360. (February, 2015). Natal Teeth. www.consultant360.com/articles/natal-teeth
- Very Well Family. (February 22, 2022). Can Babies Be Born With Teeth? What to Know About Natal Teeth. www.verywellfamily.com/can-a-baby-be-born-with-teeth-yes-they-re-natal-teeth-5219318
- Healthline. (March 10, 2016). Why Some Babies Are Born with Teeth. www.healthline.com/health/parenting/baby-born-with-teeth
- Stanford Childrens. (n.d.). Natal Teeth. www.stanfordchildrens.org/en/topic/default?id=natal-teeth-90-P01862
- Hurst Pediatric Dentistry. (March 4, 2021). Can Babies Be Born with Teeth?. hurstpediatricdentistry.com/2021/03/04/can-babies-be-born-with-teeth/
Here at theAsianparent Malaysia, it’s important for us to give information that is correct, significant, and timely. But this doesn’t serve as an alternative for medical advice or medical treatment. theAsianparent Malaysia is not responsible for those that would choose to drink medicines based on information from our website. If you have any doubts, we recommend consulting your doctor for clearer information.
Disclaimer: You are not allowed to share this article on any other website or on Facebook without providing proper credit and the original article link on theAsianparent Malaysia website
Read more: Babies and Pets: Can They Co-Exist?
Read more: Sudden Infant Death Syndrome: SIDS Causes, Risk Factors and Tips for Prevention
Read more: 15 Parenting Tips to Improve Your Parenting Skills TODAY!