Published On 19 Jul, 2023
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Many parents don’t take their children to the dentist unless they suspect a dental problem. Dentists say you should take your child to their first dental visit when they turn 1 year old, it will help the child for the Healthy Teeth and Gums. It’s a wrong assumption that a dentist visit is due only when there’s a dental problem. That’s not all the dentist does. Early visits to the dentist ensure that the dentist is able to identify any developmental or oral health issues in your child on time so that they can be fixed.
Another reason to take your child to the dentist when they’re still small is to reduce the risk of speech development problems. Not many parents know that teeth and gum health can affect early speech development.
This blog post discusses how Teeth Health and Gums affect speech development and why ensuring healthy teeth and gums in children is so important.
Speech can get affected due to numerous dental conditions. Taking your child to the dentist when their first tooth pops out is important because the dentist will be able to tell if your child’s teeth are developing right. In the case they aren’t, the dentist will suggest certain procedures to correct these conditions and ensure your child’s oral health and speech development are proper.
Teeth, tongue, and lips work together to form words. All these structures in your oral cavity manipulate the air as it flows out of your mouth. A child will start speaking (or at least try to speak) when their baby teeth erupt, which is usually at the age of 1. At this point, children start using expressive language and also learn how to anchor different sounds in their mouths. Their sound production improves as they become more familiar with mouth movement and vocalizing.
Teeth can have a dramatic impact on articulation in children. Articulation is the ability to produce appropriate sounds. If your child’s teeth aren’t developing properly, they’ll find it difficult to articulate sounds such as that of R and S.
This is one of the primary reasons why you must take your child to their first dental visit when they turn 1 year old. The dentist will inspect your child’s teeth to ensure they’re developing right. With the teeth development and health on the right track, you can put aside the possibility of speech delay and speech problems in your child. Poor Teeth Development Causes Sound Distortion
It’s important to ensure proper teeth alignment and development in children to ensure they don’t experience speech-related challenges. For example, when you say the alphabet ‘F,’ the top teeth touch the bottom lip. Your child won’t be able to pronounce the letter F and any words beginning with it if those top teeth are missing. Similar to this, your upper front teeth prevent your tongue from sticking out too much when you utter the letter “S.” The pronunciation of S-words will be affected if these teeth are missing.
If any teeth are missing or aren’t developed properly, your child will have problems pronouncing certain words and sounds, which will affect the clarity of their speech and their self-confidence in the long run.
Another dental problem affecting children’s speech development is improper jaw structure. If your child’s jaw is too small, it’ll result in overcrowding of the teeth. With all the teeth cramped up in limited space, the tongue will have less space to move.
As you already know, the tongue and teeth work together to produce sound, and when the tongue doesn’t have enough space to move, it’ll affect the clarity of speech. This is another reason why you should ensure healthy teeth development in your child.
Another dental condition that affects speech in children is malocclusion which is the improper positioning of the teeth. The teeth aren’t aligned when the mouth and jaw are closed. The condition in which front teeth aren’t closed is called an open bite, creating a gap between the upper and lower teeth. If your child has an open bite condition, they may be unable to enunciate several sounds because of the presence of so much space between their teeth.
Children who consume too many sugary foods can lose their baby teeth too soon. Sugary foods can cause tooth decay, and tooth decay leads to tooth loss. The loss of teeth can affect your child’s speech development significantly. As we said earlier, your child uses their tongue and teeth to articulate words and sounds. If the teeth are missing, the sound articulation will be affected. Therefore, it’s important to stay on top of your child’s oral health and keep their sugar intake to a minimum.
Teeth and gum health impacts speech development directly. If your child’s teeth aren’t developing properly, they’ll experience trouble pronouncing words. Most people assume speech is only related to the tongue, but that’s not true. The tongue, teeth, and lips all work together to form words.
If you’ve observed that your child doesn’t pronounce certain words correctly, instead of taking them to a speech therapist, we suggest you take them to a dentist to check their teeth development. The chances of speech problems arising from dental health issues are high. The dentist will recommend corrective measures for the underlying dental health issues, and once teeth problems are sorted, you can then take help from a speech therapist to work with your child to correct their speech.
If you’re looking for a reliable pediatric dentist for your gum treatments, Dr. Paul’s Dental Clinic is your place to go. Our pediatric dentists are experts at handling kids. They’ll make sure your child is comfortable during the examination.
If you haven’t taken your child to a dental checkup yet, it’s high time you do.