Background: Deciduous teeth play an important role in the proper alignment, spacing and occlusion of permanent teeth. The calcification of deciduous teeth begins during the fourth prenatal month, and calcification of all deciduous teeth begin by the end of the sixth prenatal month. The eruption date varies and is genetically influenced. Delayed eruption of deciduous teeth, especially the first teeth, causes nutritional problems for the infants. It also results in parental concerns. In this study, we compared the timing of eruption of the first deciduous teeth in infants in relation to their birth weight.
Methods: A total of 143 infants born at Shariati Hospital in Tehran from December 2004 to December 2005 were included in the study. Data on sex, birth weight, gestational age, and time of first tooth eruption were collected.
Results: The mean birth weight was 3220 +/- 420 g with 5.5% of infants weighing less than 2500 g, and 19.9% weighing more than 3500 g. Patients were monitored weekly from the third month of age until the time of first tooth eruption. The mean age of first tooth eruption was 7.68 +/- 1.84 months.
Conclusion: There was a negative linear correlation between the time of first deciduous tooth eruption and birth weight, suggesting that delayed tooth eruption may be related to lower birth weight.