Advanced + Family Dentistry - November 2018

Should Parents Help Pull Loose Baby Teeth?

Losing baby teeth is a rite of passage for children. It’s a sign that they are growing up! Many parents are excited to be part of this experience and re-enact the traditions of their childhood. How many of you remember a parent tying one end of a string to your tooth and the other to a doorknob, helping the tooth come out with a single slam? This “trick” for getting out a loose tooth is a time-honored tradition — and it’s also one of the worst ways to handle a loose baby tooth! You should never force a tooth to come out before it’s ready. If a tooth is yanked out before the root is fully dissolved, the root can break and cause a great deal of pain. Forcing a tooth out can also damage gum tissue or the surrounding teeth, leading to infection.

will get swallowed by accident. If this happens, you don’t have to be

alarmed. A baby tooth is not a choking hazard and a swallowed tooth will pass through your child’s body without any trouble. At most, you may have to help your child write a letter to the tooth fairy explaining what happened. If your child is begging you to take out their loose tooth, don’t go searching for the string. Instead, take a tissue and gently apply pressure on the tooth with two fingers. The tooth should pop right out. However, if the tooth resists or your child complains about any pain, leave the tooth alone a little longer. The best way to deal with a loose tooth is to have patience and let your child wiggle their tooth until it falls out on its own. Loose teeth will fall out when the time is right.

Some parents want to get loose teeth out of their child’s mouth as soon as possible because they’re worried the tooth




These spicy, tangy carrots make a healthy Thanksgiving side that doesn’t skimp on flavor. Plus, you can do most of the work in advance and assemble the finished dish on the big day.


• 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil • 4 ounces watercress, stems trimmed • Plain Greek yogurt, for serving • Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste

• 30 small carrots (2–3

bunches), tops removed and carrots scrubbed

• 2 chipotle peppers in adobo, minced • 1 teaspoon adobo sauce from the chipotle can • 1 tablespoon molasses


1. Heat oven to 350 F. In a rimmed baking sheet, toss carrots with chipotle peppers, molasses, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper, and roast for 30–35 minutes. 2. Transfer carrots to a plate and let them cool completely. 3. Once cooled, toss carrots with adobo sauce. Lay across a platter, and top with watercress. 4. Serve alongside yogurt.

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