Often in movies, a parent will tie a string around the loose tooth of their child and a doorknob before slamming the door. The movies make it look quick and painless, and like a great bonding experience with your children, right?
Today, your caring dentists at Whitewing Dental in McAllen, TX, will answer this burning question and share how you can handle this at home.
What Causes a Loose Tooth?
If an adult is experiencing a loose tooth, there can be many underlying causes for it, but for children it usually means they are making way for their permanent teeth.
The pressure from these new adult teeth pushes against the roots of the baby teeth, breaking the roots down and causing the baby teeth to lose their support. As a result, you have a loose tooth.
Find Out Why the Tooth Is Loose
There are usually two reasons for a loose tooth. Either it’s a baby tooth making way for a permanent tooth, or your child has suffered an oral injury.
The rule for permanent teeth coming in is first tooth in, first tooth out. In most cases, it will be the teeth in front that go first. You will likely start seeing this when your child is six or seven years old.
In the event of a fall or facial injury, it is best to call your McAllen dentist to find out what steps you need to take next.
When You Should Pull the Loose Tooth
It can be tempting to pull your child’s tooth at the slightest wiggle. Children are often bothered by a loose tooth, and they will either leave it alone or beg you to pull it for them.
If you touch the tooth and there is only a slight wiggle that causes your child pain, leave it be, as the tooth is still rooted to the gum.
If the tooth seems quite loose or twists around in the socket, then it is time for it to come out. The best way to pull it out yourself is to wrap a piece of tissue around the tooth, gently squeeze, and let the tooth fall out on its own.
What To Do if There Is Pain After the Tooth Removal
If you have decided to pull the tooth and there is pain after, you may be wondering what to do next. Here are a few things you can try:
- Hold off on very hot food until your child no longer feels numbness
- Do not directly brush the area for 4-5 days
- Have your child rinse their mouth with saltwater
- Take an over-the-counter pain reliever
- Only eat soft foods for 24 hours
- Contact your dentist if pain persists
When To Leave It Be
The best way to handle a loose tooth is to let your child wiggle and jiggle it until it comes out on its own. This will cause less pain and bleeding, and your child will feel very accomplished knowing they did it all on their own.
When To See a Dentist
When your child starts to lose their teeth, it gives them a sense of confidence and independence. This is a great time to start teaching them about proper oral hygiene and taking responsibility for their own teeth.
When you set up your appointment with our team of McAllen family dentists, we can teach your kids the proper techniques and answer any questions they may have.
If your child has a loose tooth and you’re not sure if you should pull it – don’t. Instead, visit your friendly McAllen dentists at WhiteWing Dental
Losing a tooth can be a major milestone for your child, and with that comes many new questions on what you can do yourself and what you should leave to your dentist.
At Whitewing Dental, we believe no question or concern is too small. Give us a call and we will be happy to help!