Hi, I was wondering if I could possibly get some advice about what might be the best decision regarding my 7 yo son's teeth. We have not yet taken either of our children to see a dentist. Recently we noticed that there are actually holes in two of his top teeth and he says they hurt when he chews certain foods. I'm pretty sure this is beyond a nutritional treatment, which seems pretty impossible anyway, for various reasons. I have been researching pediatric dentists in our area and I kid you not, or maybe this is not surprising, that every single website had pages of info about how parents should be limiting certain foods and caring for their kids' teeth, which includes flouride treatment in some form including flouridated water. Most of them also mentioned that they use amalgam and composite fillings as well.
I am not exaggerating when I say that I am in a state of complete anxiety about this. I also have so much guilt heaped on my shoulders and I just don't know what I should do. Do we just pick a dentist within our insurance and go with what they prescribe, regardless of what that is, just so my son can get this done quickly?? Or do I seek out a holistic dentist, which is not covered, and is also much farther away, but where we might be able to avoid harmful filling material and flouride treatments??
The thing that bothers me the most, is that I used to consider myself fairly well educated about the dangers of flouride etc, and we used to eat a near perfect WAP diet, but now I feel like I just don't know anymore. The pro flouride info is so convincing. I just feel like a complete failure of a mother and it would kill me if my son's health were to be compromised as a result of having to have at least two teeth filled and be put under some kind of sedation. It just seems like either you do what all mainstream people do with their kids and follow the ADA's protocol, or you pay through the nose for alternative care and/or try to take care of your kids' teeth yourself, but that is backed by just a lot of hope that it works. It's kind of a lose-lose situation.
We live in Redondo Beach, CA, and would be willing to travel a little ways to see someone, so if you all have any advice and/or a recommendation for a pediatric dentist/holistic dentist, *please* let me know!!
I don't have a recommendation for you regarding one in your area as I live on the opposite coast, however some words of encouragement... Don't stress so much over this as not every "conventional" dentist will make you do flouride treatments, etc. Just interview a few and let them know what you do or don't want and if they'd be fine with that. Having had some dental work done myself I can tell you that if you find a reasonable one they won't question you why you do or don't want something. They may ask you to sign a release stating you won't hold them accountable if they won't do a, b, or c, but one that's not out solely for $$ will not expect everything to be done that they prescribe. You can also ask for white fillings, they don't have any mercury or metals in them as far as I know. Regarding sedation? That's solely your choice, or really what your son feels most comfortable with. For something as smiple as a filling there's no reason they would need to do that unless the patient insists for sedation. Only thing would be novicane, which is strongly recommended on tooth work as it can hurt if it's a deep cavity, but even that may not be needed if it's a cavity on the surface of the tooth.
I would say just go. If you get a terrible feeling from the clinic, choose someone else. But you have to start somewhere. I understand dental anxiety especially when it comes to kids. I have it. Your kid is hurting and it's best IMO to have him treated. I have a mouthful of harmful materials, ie composite fillings...literally about 20. I have no idea in what ways they are harming my health...but I choose that over having gaps in my smile, and I'm comfortable with that.