We all have memories of losing our baby teeth as children. Maybe you have some funny stories of strange places you lost a tooth or odd ways you had a tooth fall out. Did you believe in the tooth fairy, and what kind of treasures do you remember finding under your pillow?
Despite all of us having the shared experience of losing teeth as kids, you may not have considered why it happens in the first place. Now you’re a parent, and you have some questions.
Why do children lose their teeth over time? How do I talk to my kids about losing their teeth?
And more importantly, how can I best take care of my child’s teeth and help them create good oral health habits?
To start, permanent teeth don’t all move at the same pace. So kids’ baby teeth gradually fall out over a period of time as the permanent teeth start to push through.
The baby teeth help guide the permanent teeth into the right spot as the permanent tooth absorbs the root of the baby tooth. This is why, when the tooth is completely ready to come out, it shouldn’t hurt.
Keep reading for more answers to all of your questions!
When do kids start losing teeth?
Kids usually lose their first tooth anywhere between 4-7 years old. It all depends on your child’s natural growth and development.
Girls tend to develop faster than boys, but that’s not a concrete rule. It’s also possible that outside factors, such as your child falling on their mouth or jaw, can speed up the process.
You should only be concerned if your child is not yet showing any signs of loose teeth past the age of 7. At that point it would be a good idea to get an X-ray to see what could be preventing the permanent teeth from coming up.
Which teeth do kids lose first?
Your child’s front 4 teeth—2 on top and 2 on bottom—are typically the first ones to go. This is why we see so many kids with the adorable missing 2 front teeth look!
When do kids lose their front teeth?
Your child’s front baby teeth will start to loosen when they are around 4-7 years old.
You’ll probably see the two front teeth on top and bottom come out first, and from there the side teeth will begin to loosen as well. The last teeth to come out before the molars are usually the canine teeth.
At what age do kids lose their molars?
Children’s molars are usually last to come out, along with their canines. This final process signals the end of baby teeth and the beginning of adult tooth development.
When do kids stop losing teeth?
Children are usually done losing their teeth by ages 12-13. It’s important to let your child’s teeth fall out naturally and not force a loose tooth by pulling it. This will help keep your kid’s gums healthy as the permanent teeth come in.
When should kids start brushing their own teeth?
Experts say kids can brush their teeth around 5-7 years, which is usually when they’ve developed strong hand-eye coordination.
As you teach your kid to be independent and do things for themselves, you also want to make sure all of the teeth are getting cleaned.
Make sure your child’s teeth are getting brushed at least twice a day. When they begin elementary school, you may see that they are ready to start brushing their teeth on their own.
You know your child best, so this is all up to you! However, it’s a good idea to watch the process and give your kid some tips on brushing if you feel like they are rushing or not reaching all of their teeth.
Natural + Safe Oral Care
What are some safe teeth whiteners for kids?
Most teeth whiteners sold are not safe for children, so opt for a natural method like oil pulling and avoid foods and drinks that stain teeth.
There are a lot of highly effective teeth whiteners on the market, but a lot of them are hard on our teeth and also contain toxic ingredients if swallowed. For children and adults with sensitive teeth, it’s best to keep teeth white naturally.
Can you make your own toothpaste for your child?
You can easily DIY your own toothpaste. Just make sure you are still thoroughly cleaning every tooth and flossing regularly as well. Plus, make sure you store your homemade toothpaste properly and throw it out when it expires.
Kids under the age of 6 shouldn’t have flouride in their toothpaste, and even past that age, it is still dangerous if your kid accidentally swallows the toothpaste.
If you want to completely avoid fluoride and other chemicals found in toothpaste sold in stores, opt for DIY.
Find a Pediatric Dentist You Can Trust
You should be scheduling your child’s dentist appointments every 6 months. If you live in the Kansas City area or near Overland Park, we recommend visiting Sweet Tooth Pediatric Dentistry + Orthodontics.
It’s very natural for kids to feel scared to visit the dentist, so Sweet Tooth goes above and beyond to create an environment that feels safe, friendly, and fun for children.
There are exciting play areas, bright colors, and unique prizes. Plus, the dentists and orthodontists are amazing with children and will help you little one feel more at ease.
If you have more questions about your child’s baby teeth or permanent teeth, your dentist can give you more detailed information and help you decide when you should take X-rays or begin any kind of orthodontic process.