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British Baby Born with Fully Formed Tooth

When little Cruise Horsburgh was born on January 27, 2018, he greeted the world with a surprise in his mouth – a fully formed tooth. Cruise's parents, Shannon MacAllister and Dean Horsburgh, were understandably shocked to see the bottom lower central incisor in their baby’s mouth, but they soon learned that it does happen - just not very often.

"There are only about 2,000 to 3,000 babies born a year with a fully developed tooth," says Dr. Stephen Hill of Allen, Texas. "It’s not common, but it’s not unheard of either."

Horsburgh’s tooth should not get in the way of his oral development, but Hill says his parents should take special precautions with the tooth, just as they should with the rest of his teeth as they erupt.

"This may be a baby tooth, but it is still important to take care of it just as you would your adult teeth," says Hill. "That means brushing it, and not letting the baby go to sleep with milk in his mouth. Typically for an older baby we say send them to bed with water only, but for a child this young I would just recommend cleaning the tooth off with gauze."

Experts recommend babies hold off on drinking water until at least the age of 6 months - but not because water is bad for babies.

"This is to ensure that the baby is getting an adequate amount of nutrients from milk or formula, and not filling up on water," says Hill.

One thing you should avoid in a baby this young, however, is fluoride.

"We recommend you avoid giving your child fluoridated toothpaste until they get to about age 3. This is because, before that age, it's hard to explain to them why they shouldn’t swallow their toothpaste," says Hill. "So, you really want to make sure they understand they need to spit out their paste, and also make sure they know how to spit it out."

Until the age of 3, children should be getting at least some fluoride from their local water supply. Unlike little Cruise, most children can start drinking water around the same age as their teeth begin to erupt.

"If your area doesn’t have fluoridated water, speak to your dentist or pediatrician about prescription fluoride tablets," says Hill.

As for Cruise, he may have a unique tooth, but he’s definitely not the record holder.

"I believe that honor goes to a baby born in India this past June," says Hill. "He had seven teeth, which is pretty much unheard of."

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