Guide to a Loose Tooth
June 10, 2020 at 8:00 AM
by Little Heroes Pediatric Dentistry

What starts with a wiggle and ends with a gap-toothed giggle? A loose tooth!

When your childs first tooth starts moving, it's an exciting milestone in their smile journey. But, if it keeps wiggling but doesnt fall out, you may be tempted to just pull it out. Here are some things you should know before you do.

Why do teeth wiggle?

Having a loose baby tooth generally means that there is a permanent tooth right under it, pushing it out so that it can take its place. The adult tooth forces the baby tooth’s roots to dissolve, loosen, and then fall out.

Children usually lose their baby teeth in the same order that they came in. The incisors, the flat teeth in the front, usually are the first to go. Most children begin losing their baby teeth when they reach 6 or 7 year of age. If your child isnt losing their teeth at the right time, or if they are losing teeth in the wrong order, consult with your pediatric dentist.

Your childs tooth can also become wiggly because of trauma, such as taking a fall or accidentally having something hit their face. If you suspect that the tooth may be loose due to traume, call the office of your pediatric dentist and set up an appointment.

Is pulling the right route?

Deciding whether to pull or not to pull can depend on several things. If your child gets nervous every time someone goes near their teeth, mouth, or face, dont pull it out. Eventually, it’ll fall out on its own.

If your child doesnt like the wiggliness and asks for your help, start by gently touching the tooth. Don’t tug on it if it only barely wiggles or if it hurts your child. That just means that the tooth is still rooted in the gums and is not ready to be taken out yet.

If it's extremely loose and wiggling like crazy, then you can carefully wrap it in tissue and squeeze it. It should fall out pretty easily.

The best way, though, is to encourage them to gently wiggle it out on their own using their tongue or fingertips. That way theyll experience less bleeding and pain. Itll also make them feel proud, like a hero, and theyll be excited to leave it for the tooth fairy themselves!