THE TOOTH FAIRY is one of many childhood fantasy figures we remember fondly. We lost our baby teeth, stuck them under our pillow, and the mysterious tooth fairy would swap our teeth out for money! What could be better?
The tooth fairy isn’t quite the same for everyone though! The legend of the tooth fairy has changed over the years and even varies widely around the world. Let’s learn a little bit more about other tooth fairy traditions!
The Tooth Fairy Legend Began With Ancient Superstitions
Before the tooth fairy went looking under our pillow for baby teeth, she used to look in the ground! In early Europe, burying or burning baby teeth was a precaution taken against witches. It was believed that if a witch got a hold of one of your teeth, they could have complete power over you!
Along with a fear of witches, children were instructed to burn their teeth so that they could have a peaceful afterlife. It was believed that if a tooth wasn’t incinerated, the person would be doomed to spend eternity searching for them.
The Vikings didn’t want to destroy baby teeth, however. They even paid for them! In Norse culture, children’s teeth were believed to bring good luck in battle, so many warriors had necklaces made of children’s fallen out teeth!
Before A Fairy, There Was A Mouse
More recently we’ve seen the development of monetary gifts as a reward for a lost tooth. But not all tooth fairies are pixies with wings… In many Latin countries the tooth fairy is a mouse named Raton Perez! He also retrieves the teeth from under a pillow and leaves money or a gift in return.
How Our Modern Tooth Fairy Came To Be
As with many American traditions, the tooth fairy has roots in European folklore. Instead of burying our teeth in the ground, we “bury” our teeth under our pillow! It is said that our modern conception of the tooth fairy came about in the early 1900s. With the help of Walt Disney’s beloved fairy characters, the idea of a tooth fairy gained popularity and became what it is today!
The Tooth Fairy Plays An Important Role For Children
The legend of the tooth fairy is likely still so prevalent because it helps comfort children when they lose their teeth, an experience that can be traumatic for some. The tooth fairy helps them see this big step as a positive experience and a sign that they are growing up!
As your trusted dental professionals, we want what is best for you and your kids. If you have any questions or concerns about your child’s teeth, call or come into our office!
Thank you for all that you do!
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WHILE MOST PEOPLE HAVE thirty-two permanent teeth that develop (including the wisdom teeth) some people’s permanent teeth never grow in at all. These are called congenitally missing teeth—teeth missing from birth—and it’s actually more common than you think!
So, what do you do if you find out you or your child have one or more congenitally missing teeth?
Why Would a Tooth Be Congenitally Missing?
A lot of factors are at play when it comes to the complex process of tooth formation. Congenitally missing teeth can run in families, meaning that often it is simply an inherited trait. Certain systemic conditions can also result in missing teeth. Whatever the reason for congenitally missing teeth, the good news is that there are effective ways to treat it.
What Kinds of Treatments Are There for Missing Teeth?
Depending on your unique situation and personal preference, your dentist will recommend one or a combination of these treatments:
- Orthodontic treatment: Oftentimes gaps left by missing teeth will cause the surrounding teeth to rotate and shift into the empty space, resulting in bad bite and other issues. Orthodontic treatment is often recommended to keep the gap open until treatment to replace the missing tooth is undertaken.
- Dental implants: This is most often the treatment of choice. Dental implants are artificial tooth roots that provide a strong foundation for replacement teeth. Combined with a crown specifically made to match your teeth, they are the most natural, functional and long-lasting treatment option.
- Dental bridge: Bridges, often considered the next best option, literally “bridge” the gap created by one or more missing teeth. Crowns, placed on the two teeth adjacent to the gap, are connected to a false tooth that fills the space left by the missing tooth.
- Removable partial denture: This appliance consists of replacement teeth attached to a gum-colored plastic base. The removable denture simply rests on your natural teeth and gums.
Your Dream Smile Is Our Goal
If you or your child have congenitally missing teeth, consult with us today about your options. Whatever your decided treatment plan, we’re dedicated to making sure you get the smile you’ve always dreamed of! Making you smile makes our day!
Call us today at
952-894-1365 or click here to request
a FREE consultation appointment!
Image by Flickr user KatieThebeau used under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 license.