It is a trademark occurrence of a child who is getting older: their baby teeth get loose and eventually get pulled to make way for those adult ones. However, losing baby teeth does not always happen so easily. In fact, with some children, those baby teeth never come out at all. This condition, which is sometimes referred to as shark teeth, can leave your child with what looks like multiple rows of teeth. If your child has permanent teeth coming in and those baby teeth are still steadfastly in place, there could be a few things going on. Check out these potential reasons you should talk to the dentist about as a parent.
Your child is fearful of pulling their baby teeth.
This one is rarely the case, but is still worth bringing up. If your child is apprehensive about pulling their baby teeth, it can prevent them from doing the usual routine of wiggling the tooth until it is loose enough, which should be done at a certain point in the growth progression process of the new tooth. If the baby tooth is not wiggled and pulled, it will basically set up shop in the soft tissue and stay there even though the root is changing, which can eventually lead to problems with decay.
Your child's permanent teeth are not developing as they should.
Part of the reason baby teeth start to loosen and can then be pulled is because a new tooth is growing through and pushing the existing tooth out of the way. If the permanent tooth never starts to develop, it can prevent the baby tooth from ever getting loose or its root system from ever changing. If your child still has certain baby teeth beyond the age of 12 or 13, there could be issues with the development of permanent ones at play.
The root system of the baby tooth is not deteriorating as it should.
Once permanent teeth start to push their way through the gum line of your child's mouth, the baby tooth's root system should be pushed out of the way so the new tooth can take over. This change in root structure is what contributes to the loss of the baby teeth, but sometimes, this just doesn't happen the way it should. This means that your child will essentially have two teeth trying to grow in the exact same spot, both with healthy root systems. In these situations, the baby tooth will have to be extracted because it can affect the permanent tooth having enough room to grow in line with the rest of the teeth.