The losing of baby teeth marks a child’s growing up and can cause excitement (or sometimes concern) for many children. To celebrate this event many cultures have a “tooth fairy” figure who collects a child’s lost teeth in exchange for gifts or money. In many parts of the world, including France, Spain and South America, the tooth fairy comes in the form of a mouse or rat who often leaves a small gift behind. Many Asian or African cultures throw, bury or hide baby teeth in various baby tooth rituals. In fact, the Tooth Fairy as we know her – a good fairy who leaves money under your pillow – only appeared in popular folklore around the turn of the century.
For more information about baby tooth traditions, see the free printable below sponsored by Delta Dental: Baby Tooth Traditions Around the World.
What form does the Tooth Fairy take?
It depends where you go — she can be a fairy, mouse, rat, sparrow, crow, rabbit or even a squirrel!
Baby Tooth Traditions Around the World
What happens when you lose a baby tooth? From the Tooth Fairy to the Tooth Mouse, different cultures celebrate a variety of traditions. Find out what children do with their baby teeth all across the globe.
THROW YOUR TOOTH! |
In Parts of North Africa arid the Middle East, kids throw their tooth at the sun.
In many parts of the world, kids throw their tooth on the root and ask for a new one.
In some countries, only lower teeth go the roof and umber teeth qet buried in the ground or placed on or under the bed. In other countries, it’s the other way around!
Sometimes children throw their tooth on the roof as an erreriiiq to IIIOUSS or rut. who will take the tooth and make sure a strong, healthy tooth grows in its place.
SQUEAK FOR BABY TEETH
In many countries, the Tooth Fairy is a mouse or rat! Known as Ratorlcito Pérel or Ratérl Miguelito in the Spanish-speaking world, the tooth mouse takes lost baby teeth and leaves a gift or money in exchange.
In parts of Eurasia. children leave their baby teeth in mouse holes.
A Some kids put their tooth in a glass of water before they go to sleep. As they sleep, a mouse comes, drinks the water. takes the tooth and leaves coins or candy.
BACK TO THE EARTH
In ltalian cultures, Children tie their teeth. In Turkey. the Dlace you bury your teeth will determine your future: To be a successful soccer player, you might bury your tooth in a soccer ﬁeld.
Some kids throw their tooth into a ﬁeld or river. In some cultures, children wrap their tooth in meat or bread and teed It to an animal, like a mouse or dog.
FAIRIES, CHARMS & CHICKENS
ln most of the English-speaking world, kids leave their tooth under their billow. The Tooth Fairy comes while they sleep and replaces the tooth with some money. In Denmark, she’s called Tandfeen .
Parents make unique iewelry out of baby teeth, like gold-plated earrings or charms for a necklace.
In West Africa, children get a chicken or rooster in exchange for a baby tooth.
Pediatric Dentist Advice: How to Tell Your Child Has a Cavity
A pediatric dentist can tell you some things are just unavoidable in the life as a child, and
cavities are one of those instances. With all the prodding and encouragement to brush and floss
well every day, and to make healthy food choices, your child may still end up getting a cavity.
Your pediatric dentist can easily fix the issue once determined, and here are a few ways to tell
that your child is dealing with a cavity:Your child chews on only one side of their mouth. If you have a young child, they may not be able to properly communicate they’re suffering from pain in their mouth. If you can see that your child is consistently choosing to chew food on only one side of their mouth, and it’s always
the same side, your child probably has a cavity.
You can see chalky white spots on your child’s teeth. When your child flashes a smile, and you can easily see white spots or other discolorations on their teeth/tooth, that is a sign that they
have developed a cavity. Schedule an appointment with your pediatric dentist right away to have it looked at.
Your child complains about pain while brushing. It may not be unusual for your child to complain about having to brush their teeth, but it may be abnormal for them to complain about pain while brushing. This is a key sign they are suffering from tooth sensitivity and most likely a cavity.
Your child has a visibly swollen cheek. If you can tell that one of your child’s cheek is swollen compared to the other, that’s a sign something is out of whack, and needing to be immediately
checked out. If your child can’t recall recently falling or bumping into something that may have caused a swollen cheek, be sure to call your pediatric dentist right away.
Prepare your child for their filling appointment. The best thing you can do for your child is to try to diminish any fears they have of seeing the dentist. If you appear to be calm with a positive
attitude, your child will be more likely to not feel as nervous. Showing your child books and pictures of children seeing the dentist, will help to explain that it is a normal and positive experience.
How to prevent cavities in the future. Once your child has seen your pediatric dentist and has gotten their cavity filled, there are certain foods and drinks you should limit as much as possible.
Try to avoid giving your child sugary soda or fruit juice, avoid sticky foods like toffee and other types of candy, and try to see your pediatric dentist twice a year for checkups.
If your child is experiencing any of the symptoms described above, be sure to contact your dental practitioner immediately to schedule an appointment. Your pediatric dentist will be able to
confirm whether your child has a cavity, and the next steps needed to fix the problem along with
tips on cavity prevention.
3 Questions to Ask Your Pediatric Dentist
A pediatric dentist is an oral health practitioner that has undergone specialized training in the
field of childcare. As a parent, you are the advocate for your child’s health and well-being,
therefore, it is imperative to choose a pediatric dentist that can perform services and provide
recommendation of the highest level of expertise. You also want to look for a pediatric dentist
that is thoughtful, helpful, patient, and someone your child can consider a friend.
Here are 3 questions to ask a pediatric dentist when deciding upon the best provider for your
1. Do You Use Sealants During Treatments?
A sealant is a modern type of treatment now being used in dental practices, and is the use of a
sealing agent placed upon the surface of the tooth to block out bacteria that can lead to cavities
and tooth decay. This bacteria can also cause gum disease and the use of a sealant can
prevent these serious issues from potentially happening. It is still very important to discuss the
importance of daily brushing, flossing, and healthy eating, and the use of a sealant may not be
needed in dental treatments for your child.
2. Should I Buy a Toothpaste with Fluoride?
Many people have heard both advantages and disadvantages of the use of a fluoride
toothpaste, and is a smart question to ask your pediatric dentist. Some dentists recommend
using fluoride to prevent cavities, and improve your child’s tooth strength. While others do not
feel that a toothpaste with fluoride is essential to a healthy oral routine, and it is made up of
chemicals that people don’t need to achieve a healthy mouth. Ask your dental pediatrician for
their opinion, and you can decide for yourself what you feel is best for your child.
3. Is Thumb-Sucking a Concern For My Child’s Health?
Some parents may be concerned about their child’s thumb-sucking habit, while others consider
it a harmless phase that will pass. However, consistent thumb-sucking can actually be harmful
to the oral health of your child, and if done for a long time, can inhibit natural growth and
development. Thumb-sucking can also cause uneven tooth alignment, and a dentist may be
able to speak with your child about the reasons why it’s not good for them, and can recommend
to you other ways to wean your child off the habit, including corrective procedures for any
misalignment that may have already taken place.
Be sure to ask your pediatric dentist these basic questions before starting any treatments. You
can get a feel for their background and experience, as well as determine whether or not you feel
their personality will be a good fit for your child. After finding a pediatric dentist with a high level
of training and knowledge, the next most important aspect of your child’s dental health is finding
a practitioner your child enjoys and feels comfortable with.