Losing a first tooth is a ritual for kids everywhere. It’s a sign that you’re growing up and getting bigger. And if you’re like a lot of people, it also meant a little cash under your pillow in the morning from the “tooth fairy.”
What do you do with the tooth?
Some people keep them as sentimental keepsakes, but many simply toss them. After all, what can a shed baby tooth really do for you?
Well, as it turns out, quite a bit. A study stated that baby teeth are a rich source of stem cells, which are like protocells that can be grown into multiple kinds of cells if needed. That means that if later in life, a child needs replacement tissue for whatever reason, the stem cells from their baby teeth can be used to grow the needed tissue. Pretty amazing!
Potentially, the practice of storing baby teeth could save lives and treat a variety of ailments. As it turns out, baby teeth really can bring good fortune, but it’s less the magical kind, and more the medicinal kind.
Baby teeth contain stem cells and that if preserved quickly after falling out, the stem cells can be stored for years and kept in case of later medical problems in life.
But there’s one catch: the baby teeth have to be kept fresh. Like anything, stem cells degrade and lose their potency over time. So simply keeping your child’s baby teeth in a box isn’t going to cut it.
How to store baby teeth for stem cells?
The teeth are placed in a liquid nitrogen cryopreservation vault, where the stem cells will remain intact and usable for years.
If later in life, the child, who may be an adult at this point, needs their stem cells, the teeth are taken out of storage and shipped to their doctor.
Be sure to SHARE this important information with anyone you know who might be handling tooth fairy duties soon!