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Thread: upper incisors removed!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Question upper incisors removed!

    My ds (age 31 months) just had his four upper incisors removed. His right upper lateral was badly decayed and his other three incisors were very soft and badly chipped. His canine teeth are pretty far back in his mouth, and not very visible when he smiles, so now he looks like he is completely toothless on top. The dentist was adamant that removal was the best solution, as he said ds's teeth wouldn't bond well to caps and, if we capped his teeth, they would almost surely fail and potentially be a choking hazard. The dentist was great and nonjudgmental, I have been taking ds to the dentist regularly since he was 16 months. Ds has been in good spirits since the procedure, is eating and talking normally, and is no longer in pain. However, I can't help but feel deeply embarrassed when people see that he is missing his teeth. I feel as though I am being judged, and it doesn't help that dh has been telling all of his family that our son got his teeth pulled because of breastfeeding. Ds has never had soda, doesn't care for juice and only eats sweets at b-day parties, so breastmilk does seem like the likely culprit, but I have always taken great care to brush his teeth several times a day and take him to regular dentist appointments. Has anyone here experienced something similar? I don't want my psychological issues to impact my son. I want him to be happy and confident, but am afraid he will get teased. He is going to be toothless for the next four years. Any advice?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    10,440

    Default Re: upper incisors removed!

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*esther81 View Post
    it doesn't help that dh has been telling all of his family that our son got his teeth pulled because of breastfeeding.
    No advice but a for you and an to your DH. That would so not be tolerated at all by me -- he'd get a huge, huge talking to.

    There is a problem where the enamel isn't very good. My aunt was born with teeth that looked ok, but they deteriorated over time, and all her teeth were removed. Then her adult teeth came in

    I'd hope your dentist would have said something if it was really due to BFing (and I doubt that it was), but from what I understand, cavities and tooth decay are possible no matter what we do, and genetics has a big role particularly in infants and toddlers.
    Susan
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    COUGARTOWN Baby! From here on in!
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    Default Re: upper incisors removed!

    Were you using fluoride? My son had 6 cavities when we first went to the doctor. I didn't give him any sugar at all until after his 2nd b-day or juice. And he drank only breastmilk and water the 1st two years. But I didn't take him to the dentist until he was almost three. And would have waited until he was three had I not spotted black spots on his teeth that I suspected were cavities. It never occurred to me that it may have been because he was nursing. I assume that it was because I never let him use fluoride toothpaste. And I assumed he was getting it in his water but we use filtered water and I found out after the fact that the fluoride is actually filtered out. And after we went he had us use this super heavy fluoride after brushing his teeth until we used the whole bottle. Which took about 4 months. But no more at his 6month check up. Don't assume it's breast milk.

    Way too lazy for formula

  4. #4
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    Mar 2008
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    Default Re: upper incisors removed!

    @llli*aprilsmagic

    Thanks. Actually, my sister had to have all of her molars capped as a toddler because they didn't have any enamel on them. The caps kept coming loose, and she had like three different sets put on from 2 to 12, when her adult molars came in. She never had cavities, though.

    @llli*djs.mom

    Our town doesn't have fluoridated water, but I have used Tom's children's toothpaste w/fluoride since he was 18 months. I have also done weekly topical fluoride applications since he was 24 months, when the decay on his right upper lateral tooth started getting really bad. His other teeth didn't really have decay, just a chalky texture and discoloration, and they were really chipped. I feel like I have tried really hard to save his teeth, and it breaks my heart that he lost them.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: upper incisors removed!

    I understand. I feel like I failed on a colossal level because of the number of cavities my son had. And I own that failure. But I don't think I failed him because I breastfed him. That's the OPPOSITE of true. I failed to get him in soon enough. I failed to get enough fluoride in him to stop it. If I had it to do over again, I would have taken him in when he was two. Even though he didn't have a clear grasp on language at that point.
    If you had it to do over, would you have breastfed him less? Stopped sooner? I hope that isn't the case. And I hope your DH's cruel attempts to shame you don't shake your confidence in your nursing relationship and the wonderful gift you have given your child by having an extended nursing relationship with him. My son got his fillings on Jan 19th of this year. Right after his third b-day. We didn't shift our nursing relationship at all. And that includes co-sleeping and nursing to sleep. People tried to suggest that. I know it isn't so. There is a sticky about nursing and cavities in the nursing beyond one section. Read it. He is JUST NOW beginning to give up his night sessions. Because we are working to be weaned by somewhere around his 4th b-day. Not because of any pressure exerted onto us as a dyad by the outside. But because that is where WE are.
    Don't let this thing, which is admittedly terrible, turn something wonderful into anything less. It's terrible that he lost his teeth. I agree with you. And as his mother you get to shoulder that. We all do as mothers when things go wrong with our kids. But what you are saying here is akin to suggesting that if your child got an F on a test in history it's because you fed him healthy meals. And that is to blame. When no, it isn't. Him getting an F would be terrible. And as his mother in some way you would get to shoulder that. But not because you made him healthy dinners. The healthy dinners are still a great wonderful gift you are giving your child every day. Regardless of whether or not he fails a test or class. Just like your breastmilk. Does that make sense?
    You'll get through this. And it may hurt for years. Until his teeth come in. But they will. And when that happens you will only remember the hurt from time to time when you look at pictures. But then you will be able to look at your breastfeeding pictures and you'll get remember that too! We are all doing the best we can Mama.

    Way too lazy for formula

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    Default Re: upper incisors removed!

    I totally understand what you're going through. dd's enamel wasn't fully formed on her top 2 teeth when they came in & I asked the pedi about them but she wasn't too concerned. Now I know that it made them more susceptible to cavities. dd fell and broke her top front tooth almost to the gum & had it removed then we found out the other front one has bad decay & the dentist "hopes" to save it, plus she has 2 or 3 other smaller cavities. My dentist did mention night nursing as a problem & although I've seen different opinions on it, I can kind of see his point. On the other hand, I had not been diligent about morning brushing & night time brushing until recently was a real struggle so probably not as good a job as I wish I could've done. I think some kids are more predisposed to cavities regardless of if they bf, but I would definitely brush more thoroughly in the a.m if night nursing & am personally considering night weaning (dd is 2 years old) to avoid continued cavity issues esp since it looks like about $2600 to fix the ones she has. But, that's just me & I'm still pretty torn up about it.
    since 10/10/07
    and still going...

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