If you have a child, you may be experiencing the time when baby teeth are coming loose in order to make room for their adult, permanent teeth. For some children, a loose tooth can be exciting, and a time to show off, for other children, this can be a time of fear and pain when the tooth is removed. Knowing when to pull your child’s loose tooth or let it fall out naturally can make a world of difference in your child’s experience.

Most children will lose baby teeth anywhere from the ages of six to twelve, with some variance. Children have 20 baby teeth to expel before adult permanent teeth can make a home in your child’s mouth. If your child has a tooth that has become very loose and they want to pull it out themselves, be sure to discourage that. If they pull it out too soon, they can damage the root or cause an infection. It is always best to let a tooth fall out naturally, but if you feel it needs to be removed, make sure your child isn’t in any pain. If you believe the tooth is ready and can be removed pain free, give it a gentle tug to remove the tooth from your child’s mouth.

If the gums bleed when the tooth is removed, be sure to pack them with gauze quickly. If a tooth is truly ready to be pulled, there should be little pain or blood. Once the tooth has been removed and the gum has healed, be sure to keep it fully cleaned while the new tooth is coming in. This is a great time to encourage good brushing habits and start teaching your child how to floss.

Losing baby teeth can be a very exciting time for your child. The mystery of the tooth fairy and the promise of new, bigger teeth can cause little ones to want baby teeth gone before they are ready. Pay attention when your child mentions loose teeth and make sure they really are ready to be pulled. If you’re still unsure if the tooth is loose enough or your child isn’t losing teeth in time, call your Tampa dentist to schedule an appointment.