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partials for toddler with knocked out teeth?

post #1 of 31
Thread Starter 
Okay, I've noticed several times on this board it's been recommended that you put little baby partials in when a child has to have teeth extracted. My ds knocked his front two teeth out a year ago when he was 33 months old. Clean out, roots and all. When we did xrays with a ped secialist, he strongly discouraged a partial as only being necessary for aesthetics, and more traumatic to glue in then the benefit it would bring. Essentially I was being selfish to cause him discomfort to make him look the way that was important to me. Josef spoke great then and now, annunciates perfectly. Are there any studies I can show dh? Is it too late, Josef has adjusted and is used to people asking? I think the hardest part is over. That was when Josef was missing his front two and Andrew only had his front two. You wouldn't believe how many people asked him if he'd given them to his little brother. And they thought they were funny. So, what's the evidence. Thanks.
post #2 of 31
Different dentists think different ways about partials as seen here As far as studies, I don't have any particulars....Dd is being fitted for her partial next week. So I can let you know how it goes.
For me, well, yes I want to see her with teeth in the next 2-3 years. And she does get funny looks and some comments from kids and adults and while it doesn't bother her now, I just don't want it to become an issue in the next few years with her esteem. As she gets older, I don't want her to feel inhibited about smiling cuz she doesn't look like the other kids. (Maybe that will happen, maybe it won't. I just don't want to wait and see, kwim?)
The dentist didn't describe it as traumatic as there are no shots, and no drilling. He described it to dd as messy! She has seen and felt trauma in the chair....I think this might be uncomfortable but not traumatic for her.
And it will take some getting used to, but she's a pretty adaptable kid and she is great about brushing her teeth so I think keeping teeth clean around the wires and brackets won't be a problem either.
Her speech is not perfect, but also not abnormal for this age. I just want to make sure that if she needs those two teeth to "perfect" her speech, then she has them.
As for your situation, since speech and self esteem are not an issue, then it is about aesthetics. If I find any studies I will direct them to you. Smilemomma has talked about the studies of speech development. Also, I don't think it's too late. Dd is 3 yrs 3 months and has been toothless for 7 months now, 8 by the time we get the partial in.
I'll see what I find.....
post #3 of 31
Thread Starter 
At least for those 7-8 months you've known when she ws getting 'new' teeth in. It's been over a year and I still miss his other smile, and sometimes try to imagine what he'd look like with his two front teeth. All the comments from other people bother me more than him I think. He's pretty shy and this topic gets more answers to strangers than anything else. Maybe it's worth bringing up with dh again. Josef's old enough now he'd understand if we asked him if he wanted to go in to get some new teeth, and have to sit in the chair and let the dentist put his hands and some tools in his mouth, or if he's happy the way they are.
post #4 of 31
Dental visits are definitely easier with kids as they get older, especially if you have a dentist who will explain things to him and take his/her time. As a mama who loves my dd's smile, I so hear you and your feelings! I support you in talking with your dh again and in talking to another dentist, getting another pro perspective too.
post #5 of 31
How can you enunciate perfectly with no front teeth? There are just some sounds that are different. My godson had his front teeth extracted due to decay at 3. His speaking voice is clear now, at nearly 13, but it took a long time. The issue was subtle and was/is noticed more by people who didn't know him well than to our ears who listen to him all the time. Even now, I think his speech would have been clearer if he had something there. I would say you could certainly not do it, but I would get speech therapy as soon as his front teeth came in. It's not bad, but he's no radio announcer or actor, you know? If he were my child, I would at least have had some speech therapy to catch him back up.
post #6 of 31
Thread Starter 
So there's no actual data out there? I was hoping to be prepared with some info when we go in for his one year check up. I'll schedule it after the holidays. We would need partials to be recommended by our ped specialist for ins to cover them. Any studies anywhere?
post #7 of 31
Just posting to subscribe and add my voice to the questioners. My 30mo DD has a grey loose front tooth from a fall about a month ago, and I feel certain that it will fall out soon I am also curious about getting a partial for her tooth, whether it would be just for aesthetics (which are a pretty big deal; I do not want her facing rude questions for the next 4 or 5 years) or would be needed for her speech as well. She does not speak terribly clearly even with all her teeth, LOL!
post #8 of 31
Here's a quote from Smilemomma in a thread called "Traumas-Chips, breaks, cracks, bleeding, etc. on page 3.

"Yes, I agree that if the tooth cannot be saved, the space should be retained.

Having the tooth in there (or a tooth like space maintainer) will accomplish several things; it will maintain the space for the permanent tooth, although this is not usually a big issue with baby front teeth. It will allow her speech to develop normally; some studies have indicated that once the speech develops abnormally, it will not spontaneously become normal once the tooth erupts. The abnormal patterns remain without therapy. And finally, it preserves the esthetics. Other children her age will have their teeth; if she doesn't, she may get unfriendly treatment from her peers, and adults, blast their idiot souls, surprisingly make some snotty comments to children about it. Amazing, but true; I've seen it over and over. "Where's your tooth, little girl?" Yeah, where's your manners?"
post #9 of 31
My dd knocked out one tooth next to the top front and pushed back her fron tooth. That was one and a half years ago. She is now three.

A ped. dentist suggested partials, but my dentist said to skip it. The rest of her teeth look fine and her speech is developing normally.

The tooth that was puched back has eased itself back into place. No pulling needed like the ped. dentist suggested. (I was not putting my baby under!)

No one has EVER even mentioned her missing tooth. DD feels special beacuse she has already lost a tooth like the big kids in the neighborhood.
post #10 of 31
My dd..now 6 fell outside and busted her lip. I didn't know it at the time but she had knocker her 3 front teeth loose. They started to turn gray. I took her to the dentist and they were loose. He said they were dead..so he pulled them. I think she was around 3-3 1/2.
He said I could get partials for her..either a flipper which she would be able to take out or some that he could wire to her back teeth. It was going to cost $300 and I really didn't have the money to spend. So my baby has been without her 3 front teeth for all this time.. She has never been teased and no one has ever asked me about them. Her speech is fine. She eats apples with the skin on and hasn't had any problems at all. Now in Kindergarten she'll get them in soon and I can't wait to see her with teeth again
post #11 of 31
I was looking for studies and found a dentist who said children don't really become teeth conscious until 5 or 6. In other words, kids don't really make a big deal about teeth, who has them who doesn't, until the time when they all start losing them naturally......not a study but an opinion it seemed.
post #12 of 31
Thread Starter 
Thanks for looking for me. Yeah, other kids don't notice at all, unless they're a lot older, and they think it's cool. It's adults that notice and say dumb things. Or just ask what happened to them. The average kid that meets someone new gets asked 'how old are you, what's your name..." Josef almost always gets asked about his teeth. Checkout girls, people in the neighborhood, church... If I introduce Josef, they almost alsways ask him. I hate it more than he does. And he also eats apples whole. Ham sandwiches are the most difficult to take a bite out of, from the side.
post #13 of 31
Ja mama,
We went yesterday for dd's partial fit appointment. It went really smooth.
First he found the proper size metal bands by fitting/trying different sizes. Once found he molded them to her teeth and removed them. He showed her the hammer and the pliers and this intrigued her as she likes tools. On her part it just required patience. No pain.
Then he had her bite on a thin wax plate.
The he put some "pudding" in a dish, put it in her mouth, had her bite and hold it until it turned to rubber. He did this with both upper and lower. She liked it because it tasted like cherry...
That was it.
She was very proud of herself for doing so well, and listening to the instructions, and was very happy that nothing hurt...Later at the mall, she was running and telling me that she could run good cuz she was brave at the dentist!
They said when they install it, it takes about 2 days for her to get used to it. Speech will be a little funny at first and there might be some drooling.
His assistant did say that now, when she starts school and is learning to read, there won't be any speech issues. She also said that she could be as old as 7 before those top two teeth come in.
I know this is not a study that you were looking for, but an experience.
If you really want one for your ds, you are the parent and the client. You could just share with your dentist your concerns when he starts school or whatever they are. I can't see him overriding your decision on this one, ykwim?
I hope that it all works out as you hope.
post #14 of 31
Thread Starter 
Thanks malamamama! It helps to hear your story. My dh has said that since it's still important to me, we will definitely talk it over when we go in next month. So will the partial be like a retainer (like I had after braces)? I hated talking around that thing! Can the metal bands be seen when they smile or talk? I thought it was attached from behind with a smooth straight piece that was glued to the adjacent teeth, and had the fake teeth glued to the front of it. Does that make sense? I'm not really sure where I got that impression though.
Again thank you for sharing this with me!
post #15 of 31
The bands are on the second year molars, so only seen if he smiles very, very wide and open mouthed!
Then there is a wire that is attached to the band and extends around to the attached fake teeth. So no wires are seen. The wire is on the back side of the teeth. That wire on the inside is what will probably need "getting used to". Probably easier when younger than older, yeah?
It doesn't move, doesn't come out. It is cemented in. Until the adult teeth start coming in, then the dentist will take it off.
I'll keep you posted. And I am just as interested in those studies so if I find some, I'll let you know!
post #16 of 31
Ja Mama,
Dd had her partial installed today. An easy 15 minute appointment. The dentist put it in place to make sure the fit was right. Then he took it out, rinsed and dryed her mouth. Applied the cement to the brackets and placed it in her mouth. He then cleaned all the excess cement out, rinsed her mouth again, and sent her on her way! She was very proud of herself and very relieved that it was an easy appointment. She woke up today crying because she was scared about going to the dentist. So this was a really positive experience. She doesn't have any drooling, but she said it does feel kinda funny when she talks. She is pretty excited about it! Now she is more aware of the tooth fairy, so we placed her "old" teeth under her pillow, so the tooth fairy will visit tonight.
Just wanted to share the positive experience with you. Contrary to what your dentist said, there was nothing traumatic about it and it is so nice to see her toothy smile again!
post #17 of 31
Thread Starter 
Thank you so much, again! Our appt is Mon the 12. They said to expect it to take an hour to clean his teeth and take an impression. Ds is an awesome kid, but that is a long time to sit still. So far we're just telling him we'll ask the dentist if he can make some new teeth to put in while we're waiting on his to grow. No promises. I also like the tooth fairy bit, we didn't do it a year ago, he was too little. But it might be a nice touch now.
post #18 of 31
And even if it does take an hour....it will be a very interactive hour! Different steps, different instructions, something new, nothing painful. I am sure that he will do just fine! I told dd that she would be making tooth prints much like animals who make paw prints.....That intrigued her. And the "pudding" he used tasted like cherry which she also loved.....
post #19 of 31
Thread Starter 
Well, we went in this morning. They did xrays, again, they did them a year ago too. They cleaned his teeth, did the flouride polish, scraped the little tartar there was on the back of his front bottom teeth. And we talked. That's it. We had to wait almost an hour in the visiting room for a 45 min visit that was mostly waiting. (for the xrays to develop, for the doctor to come in...). and the final conversation ended in the doctor telling me he needed to look up the differences between a "flipper" retainer and a space maintainer, the parts, difficulty for him and ds with each. He'd do an insurance breakdown of each and have his receptionist give us a call. Bottom line seemed to me to be he's not comfortable making a spacer because he hasn't done anything like that in years. They did the xrays to show me his perm teeth are in there and coming fine, they'll be here between 7 and 8yrs. Same thing they told us a year ago. He hoped to talk me out of getting a partial. The Dr did give me credit with the fact ds is self-conscience his teeth are missing and won't talk about it, and that's a factor that a spacer would be beneficial. And ds is fabulous in the chair, thay all were sooo impressed. They wouldn't even take a mold today, they weren't prepared. What were we scheduled for then? We still have to go back two more times, if we can come up with an agreement. I feel like today was a wasted trip and inconvienent to boot. I'm going to write him a letter explaining what I expect. If he's not comfortable doing this, unwilling to do his research before we arrive, and unable to be prepared next time, I'd like the courtesy of him just asking us to find someone else. AAAArg. I'm so disappointed. Does anyone know anything about the retainer style "flipper"? He said it would be less work for him. (Like that's real high on my priority list)
post #20 of 31
Thread Starter 
Ds has no cavaties and great teeth. And the Dr and nurse were both great with Ds.
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