Losing baby teeth is a very exciting moment for every child. Though it may be a bit frightening at first, your child will feel overall like they are growing up. Help your child through this experience by knowing what to expect, when you should help, and potential complications!
What to Expect
A child’s baby teeth typically begin to loosen and fall out around age 6, but this timeline can be different for every child. Don’t be worried if this happens a year in advance or behind schedule. Typically, your child’s front upper and lower teeth will be the first to go. Later, the back molars fall out around ages 10-12 years old. Your child’s baby teeth will come out when their permanent tooth pushes them out, making room. If you are concerned about them losing teeth too early or late, consult your dentist.
When You Should Help
While it is natural for your child to want to wiggle a loose tooth, you should never force the tooth to become loose. Using a string or floss to pull out the tooth can be painful and harmful to your child’s dental health. Baby teeth should generally be left to fall out on their own. Baby teeth that come out too soon can lead to infections and crooked adult teeth. However, if the tooth is very loose and makes eating or brushing difficult, you can assist them in pulling it out. Grab a tissue and place it over your child’s loose tooth, gently squeeze, and it should come out easily.
Most of the time, as soon as a baby tooth falls out it is replaced by a permanent tooth. But sometimes this process can get out of sync. A permanent tooth can emerge behind or in front of the baby tooth. Or a baby tooth falls out before a permanent tooth is ready to take its place. If this is the case, it is important to take your child to the dentist. Your dentist may use spacers or pull the baby teeth to make sure the adult teeth have space to properly emerge.
The best thing you can do as a parent is to stay on top of your child’s brushing and flossing. While it may be tricky with young children, it is important to keep up with regular oral hygiene to keep their oral health in check. Regular checkups at the dentist will help keep their teeth clean and mouth healthy.
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