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The tooth fairy is a fun concept. Who doesn’t get a thrill to discover a few coins or paper money under your pillow in exchange for a baby tooth? This thought can turn a potentially distressing event into something fun for everyone. So, what can you do as a parent to help your child when a tooth is ready to come out?

First, you should know exactly what is going on inside your child’s mouth–just in case you need to explain it. Once all the baby teeth come in, they start out with 20 primary teeth. They will be replaced by the adult permanent teeth they will keep the rest of their lives if they take care of them. These will emerge at around 6-years-old and complete around the age of 13. They will push through the gums while the baby teeth (aka primary teeth) become loose and begin to fall out.

The roots of the baby teeth dissolve, and as they lose their base, the tooth hangs on by less and less tissue. Your child will notice this when the tooth begins to wiggle. As all children do, they will fidget with the tooth until it breaks free of the gum.

If the baby tooth is loose but refuses to fall out, allow it to remain so the root might more fully dissolve. Then, at your discretion, help the child pull it out. There are well-known methods parents have developed over time, but the easiest way to pull a tooth is to simply place a dry piece of tissue or cloth over the tooth for a firm grip and remove the tooth with a quick pull and twist.

If you or your child would like to speak to a dentist about a loose tooth, Dr. Duane C. Clouse would be happy to discuss it with you. Please contact Treasured Smiles Children’s Dentistry to make an appointment at 520-316-6111, or come by our office in Maricopa, Arizona.