You’ve nurtured those pearly white baby teeth until they’ve become loose. The tooth-fairy has visited but now what do you do with your children’s lost toothy pegs? According to science, you should be KEEPING THEM.
That’s not to say you should have a Tupperware container in your bedside table containing your children’s teeth. That’s just gross and a little weird.
You spend countless hours comforting your baby when their teeth start to come through. You nag your kids about the importance of brushing them to keep them free of decay while they grow and you sweat bullets over them every time your kid rides a bike or plays sport. But here’s why science says you should consider keeping baby teeth, FOR GOOD!
Not your average keepsake
Instead of being quick to toss that lost baby tooth in the bin, doctors are urging parents to hang on to them. Not in the sentimental keepsake manner you’d expect, but rather a science-driven one. As it turns out, that teeny weeny tooth holds an enormous amount of your child’s stem cells, which are like ‘protocells that can be grown into multiple kinds of cells’ if needed. Isn’t science COOL?
But why should they be kept?
Keeping your child’s baby teeth could act as a kind of insurance. If, later on in their life, they need a replacement tissue due to a serious illness or other reason – the stem cells for growing that much-needed tissue are right there in that baby tooth. There’s no need to find a donor match or anything like that because the exact match can be grown from their own stem cells. It’s potentially a life-saving act!
How should I store these pearly white baby teeth?
Unfortunately, no home method of storing your child’s teeth is going to do. Not even a double bagging of zip-lock bags in the fridge will cut it for long-term storage. You’re going to have to outsource to the professionals on this one.
Here in Australia we can purchase and access dental banking kits through Future Tooth, a dental stem cell storage bank. A dental banking kit includes a collection jar, postage container and pre-paid shipping label, so banking those baby teeth seems like a really easy thing to do.
Will the tooth fairy still visit?
Of COURSE! It’s a rite of passage for children to cash in on all that tooth brushing (or lack of). But be warned: curious kids who discover their teeth are being sent to a stem cell storage bank might think they’re going to miss out on the tooth fairy and her fabulous gold coin donation. So be sure to clear that up early.
Losing teeth can be fun for everyone! Read all about what happened when this one dad pretended to be the tooth fairy!