From Teething to Losing Baby Teeth
I remember my brother tying a string onto his loose tooth and tying the string onto the bars of the bed and going to sleep, the plan was that as he tossed and turned at night, the string would pull the tooth and he would not have to go through the pain of anticipating for it to be pulled. I really hated the tooth removing ritual at our home, it was rough, if you had a shaking tooth, it was your mission to hide it for as long. However, my aunt used to have a check-the-teeth ceremony every so often, we had to open our mouths and she would personally shake every tooth to see if it was due for removal.
If she found one, she would ask you to keep shaking it until it was loose enough, the dreaded ritual would commence. You would get a glass of water and one of your siblings would stand next to you, ready to hand it over to you so you can guggle after the tooth was pulled out. A string would be tied to the ‘patient’s’ tooth and she would distract you and before you knew it, the tooth was yanked out, you would guggle and life would go on.
Then there were our friends and neighbours who had to bite into dry maize so that the tooth twisted and fell out.
The most painful one for me was when my aunt would ask to check if the tooth was loose enough to be pulled out and in the split second of checking, shaking it, she would yank it out. That stung like hell.
Then about 1 year ago, my neighbour was carrying cake home and he pointed out that it was to celebrate his daughter who had removed her tooth. She was 8 then. Curiosity led to me asking about teeth removing rituals in their house and he said that since the daughter started losing her milk teeth, she has always removed them herself and they buy a cake with every successful tooth removed. Her brothers have also removed their own teeth because who wants to miss a tooth removing ‘birthday’ cake?
My friend has a 5 year old who has lost a couple of her milk teeth already, she tried the whole fairy came and picked your tooth and left you money and her daughter just told her, ‘mum you think I don’t know you are the one who put the money under my pillow?’ she hasn’t tried that fairy story again, but it’s the grandma who removes her teeth, because the mum, like most mums, just can’t.
I have been telling Mugi about teeth and how one day they will start shaking and he will need to pull the shaking tooth out, and we will have a ‘birthday’ cake for the lost tooth. So the boy has been coming to me every other day saying that he can feel his tooth wants to come out. I may have created a tooth monster people and I have no idea how to stop it.
So my google search has given me just a little peace, that most teeth fall out on their own, as the child is playing with it or when eating. So as soon as there is a wiggly tooth in my house, apples will be a must everyday and he will have to bite with the wiggly tooth, apparently you can also ask the child’s teacher nicely and they will remove it, google actually said you have to ask nicely, nicely is not indicating in the school diary, go there personally and use your words. Isn’t that what we teach them?
In today’s world, please do not yank the tooth out, nature will take it’s cause, make sure that the teeth are brushed regularly and they will eventually just fall off. Teeth often follow the same pattern falling off as they did sprouting (is it called sprouting?)
Welcome to the age of loosing teeth mama Mugi =)
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