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Tips for handling loose baby teeth
Updated: 2/22/2011 3:00:10 PM

Tips for removing a child In order to make way for a child's permanent teeth, parents often need to assist their children in removing loose baby teeth.

A 2010 survey of 300 Chicago Dental Society members identified some useful tips for parents to use during this stage in their child's life.

To help prepare the tooth for removal, dentists suggest loosening it with firm, gentle twisting motions, or feeding children hard foods that require extra chewing.

When pulling a tooth at home, ice cubes or frozen foods can be used to numb the gums and reduce the pain of removal.

If a child is hesitant about having his or her teeth pulled, distracting them with unrelated discussion can allow parents to remove a tooth swiftly and with minimal discomfort. Also, avoid using common extraction methods that involve tools such as pliers or dental floss tied to a doorknob.

Children will lose 20 baby teeth in their pre-teen years, according to the American Dental Association. After pulling a tooth, parents should ensure that their children rinse their mouths with a mixture of water and baking soda to remove any germs left in the empty tooth socket.

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