Jo Worgan column: Tooth fairy isn’t welcome as far as Tom’s concerned

Guardian columnist Jo Worgan.
Guardian columnist Jo Worgan.

Tom has his first wobbly tooth.

I noticed that over the weekend he kept rubbing his lower teeth with the back of his hand.

I asked him if I could feel his teeth as I suspected one would be lose and at first he would not let me.

He clamped his mouth shut and turned his head away from me, but eventually he did let me look and there it was. A wobbly tooth.

Now for most children they can tell you that their tooth hurts or is wobbly but Tom cannot do this.

His way of showing discomfort was to constantly rub at his mouth. He has also been licking things again and running his teeth along objects. He now knows though that he has a wobbly tooth but only because I have told him.

This morning while lying in bed with me he said, “My tooth wobbly, don’t pull my tooth out’”

I have tried to explain to him that his tooth will fall out by itself and another tooth will grow, just like Stephen’s tooth but I feel he does not understand.

Again this is ‘all change’ for Tom and I really don’t know how he is going to react or feel when his tooth falls out.

Will he be frightened? I am not too sure how to prepare him for this to be honest.

I am in the process of looking for social stories and have asked Tom’s school if they have any resources to help us. Losing a tooth for Tom will be a very different experience than it was for Stephen when he lost his first tooth.

I remember Stephen being very excited and he kept twisting it and saying, “Mum, the tooth fairy will take my tooth and I will get a coin.” It was a joyful and happy experience for him.

With Tom though I am filled with anxiety. I do not want him to be frightened. It is just how to explain the whole losing a tooth process to him that is so very difficult.

When I mentioned that the tooth fairy would take his tooth he became quite upset and shouted, “No tooth fairy, no!”

So I will have to think of something else. Maybe he will just prefer the tooth to be ‘gone’.

We will soon find out. Wish us luck!