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Tan/brownish spot/divet on front tooth: what to do?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
Hi,
I'm a little concerned about my 18 month old DS's front tooth. He has a divet that is awful at collecting food particles. I'm not sure if it's from being banged when he was itty bitty or if it just grew in that way. For a while, I was able to clean it so that it wasn't beige at all. But now, it seems like it's always stained. I'm not sure if it's the color of the tooth in that spot or if it's that I haven't gotten a chance to clean it properly (between him writhing during teeth brushing sessions!).

At first, I was worried that it could be a cavity forming, but my GP said cavities are a different color and usually cloud the whole tooth as opposed to a tiny spot. It's about the size of a gel pen mark. Furthermore, she said the front teeth are least likely to get a cavity, especially right in front just from the nature of it's location - food is unlikely to stick there long enough to erode the tooth.

I'm not convinced about the theory that they're baby teeth and they'll fall out so it doesn't really matter. I kind of subscribe to the idea that teeth are living and affect your whole body in some way so I'd prefer to do what's best for the tooth and not ignore it.

Does anyone have any suggestions on how to clean it well with a wiggly toddler? Does anyone think I should go to a dentist? Does anyone have any product recommendations? Has anyone had this experience? Any advice is welcome!
post #2 of 5

sounds like my son's teeth

My DS is 18 months old also and I'm taking him to the dentist on Friday. I think my son has got what they used to call baby bottle mouth but now call Early Childhood Caries (cavities) or ECC. I first noticed a divet in his front left tooth about a month or so ago. I did some research and figured out that it could be a cavity. One of the risk factors is night nursing which my DS still does. He also has white lines of demineralization near the gum line on all his front teeth (top and bottom).

We've been vigilant about tooth brushing (found out about a product called xylitol on this forum and am using a toothpaste called Spry) but i'm pretty sure things are getting worse. Originally, I was going to hold off on a dentist visit if I could halt things with really active intervention but found that wasn't working.

Since I can't see your son's divet I don't know if he has the same thing but I might have described my son's that way. If I were you I'd follow up with a dentist just in case.

Good luck. I know it can be really disconcerting to think our little perfect babies might have an issue. I've been just sick about it but I'm trying to see it as "thank God he is healthy otherwise".

post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
Yeah, it stinks! I just read a little about ECC and remineralization and it's making my head spin! I was hoping my doc was right about it just being an imperfection in my son's tooth but now with this stain that's not going away, I'm starting to worry again. I'll look into the Spry stuff. Thanks.
post #4 of 5
One of my dd's top, front teeth came in with a spot like you describe. A dentist determined that it's just a defect in her tooth. She said just to make sure we do a good job of brushing it to keep food from sitting in it. Dd is 6 now, and she still has that little defect. It hasn't caused any problems yet, and I'm sure she'll be losing that tooth soon.
post #5 of 5
Go to a dentist! Early Childhood Caries (ECC) is not a joke and the sooner you figure out a plan, the better.
Quote:
Originally Posted by zebaby View Post
He has a divet that is awful at collecting food particles.
Very likely a cavity or an enamel defect .
Quote:
Originally Posted by zebaby View Post
At first, I was worried that it could be a cavity forming, but my GP said cavities are a different color and usually cloud the whole tooth as opposed to a tiny spot.
I've seen cavities of many different colours shapes and sizes - start Googling and you'll see.
Quote:
Originally Posted by zebaby View Post
Furthermore, she said the front teeth are least likely to get a cavity, especially right in front just from the nature of it's location - food is unlikely to stick there long enough to erode the tooth.
That makes no sense. ECC usually starts on the upper front teeth (lip side). Perhaps your GP should stick to talking about her areas of expertise.
Quote:
Originally Posted by zebaby View Post
Does anyone have any suggestions on how to clean it well with a wiggly toddler?
Sit on bed with your legs in a V. Lie wiggly down with his head between your legs. Pin his arms under your legs. Sounds wierd but it's a safe and gentle way to brush a resisting child. We have to do it regularly. Consider using a Sonicare brush with an ultracompact head to brush more quickly and thoroughly. Do it twice a day.
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