Why Do Baby Teeth Become Loose?

You may remember being young and wiggling a loose front tooth with your tongue. Back then, we were excited to lose a baby tooth because that meant the tooth fairy was coming that night with a shiny new quarter in tow.

Many of us never really stopped and wondered why our baby teeth were coming loose in the first place. In the end, it comes down to growing up and maturing into our bodies.

What Classifies as a Baby Tooth?

 A baby tooth begins developing in the embryonic stage of growth and eventually starts to emerge when the child is around 6 months old. This period is also known as the teething stage

Baby teeth act as placeholders in the mouth for permanent teeth. As a young child, people have 20 baby teeth — 10 on the top and 10 on the bottom — that eventually make way for 32 adult teeth.

The Primary Cause of Loose Baby Teeth

A loose baby tooth means there is an adult tooth coming in behind it. Your child’s jaw will continue to develop at age 4, stretching out and giving the permanent teeth room to break through the gums. As an adult tooth moves in, the baby tooth’s root will dissolve, loosen and eventually fall out.

Of course, there are other ways for a baby tooth to begin loosening prematurely. A fall at home or on the playground could lead to the early loss of a tooth. If you suspect your child’s tooth is loose from a trauma, contact a pediatric dentist to ensure there are no breakage complications.

Caring Instructions for Loose Baby Teeth

A loose tooth can be uncomfortable for a child, especially when it is on the verge of falling out. However, letting a tooth fall out on its own is better than directly pulling it. Letting the process happen naturally helps prevent breakage, pain and damage to the gums. Continuing to brush around the tooth as it is loose will help your child’s gums stay healthy, eliminating surrounding plaque and bacteria.

A little bleeding is normal as a tooth works itself loose. Rinsing with clear water or salt water can help stop the bleeding and remove the taste.

Protect Your Child’s Oral Health at Sprout Pediatric Dentistry & Orthodontics

As your child’s permanent teeth come in, we are here to provide guidance and high-quality care. Schedule an appointment with Sprout Pediatric Dentistry & Orthodontics today!

Protect child's oral health
About Us

We are a specialty practice providing pediatric dental care & children's orthodontics, including braces and Invisalign, in the Portland area.

Call 503-477-9911 to make an appointment.

We look forward to meeting you.

Sprout Pediatric Dentistry & Orthodontics
1401 SE Morrison St. Ste 120, Portland, OR 97214

Phone: 503.477.9911

Email: info@sproutpediatricdentistry.com

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