What Do Different Cultures Do With Baby Teeth?

As dental health professionals, we tend to be big fans of the Tooth Fairy. Most of us can remember leaving a baby tooth under the pillow and looking forward to finding a nice reward or prize the next morning. Other parts of the world have their own unique traditions with baby teeth too.

How About a Tooth Mouse?

Many European and Latin-American countries have a Tooth Mouse instead of a Tooth Fairy. The tooth mouse is called La Petite Souris (“the little mouse”) in France, and “Raton Perez” in Spanish-speaking countries. Just like the American Tooth Fairy, the Tooth Mouse swaps teeth under pillows for little gifts or money.

Toss Teeth for Luck

Did you know that in China and Japan kids toss their baby teeth in hope of good dental luck? In these countries the kids toss their lower baby teeth upwards and their upper baby teeth downwards (or bury them) as a symbol of their hope that their adult teeth will erupt strong and in the right position.

Medieval Superstition

During medieval times, Europeans used to bury or burn baby teeth so that witches could not use them against the person and so they would not affect their afterlife. Our Tooth Fairy tradition originated from much later European folklore, with the version we recognize developing in the early 1900s with the help of Walt Disney’s popular fairy characters.

What Are Your Baby Teeth Traditions?

One key, important thing that all these traditions do is help kids feel more excited about the sometimes scary process of losing baby - or primary - teeth. Does your family do something different with baby teeth? We would love to hear more of our patients’ family traditions. No matter what your traditions are, make sure you are taking great care of baby and adult teeth alike!

Please give a call or email us directly with your feedback or if you have any questions. We would love to learn more about your traditions and we would be honored to be part of your smile blossoming journey!

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