If humans were meant to nurse into toddlerhood... - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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#61 of 86 Old 11-12-2007, 02:10 AM
 
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abx is a contraction for antibiotics
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#62 of 86 Old 11-12-2007, 02:11 AM
 
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You don't know that "nursing destroyed your toddler's teeth." You know that she nursed a long time, and you know that she has tooth decay. Why jump to the conclusion that one caused the other?

2 of my kids nursed past the age of 2, and both have nearly perfect teeth. DS nursed until age 4 and has yet to have a cavity (he's 6 now.) DD1 has a few cavities that she aquired well after weaning. DD2 weaned at only 14mo and she has the worst teeth of the 3 of them.

"abx" is shorthand for antibiotics.

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#63 of 86 Old 11-12-2007, 02:19 AM
 
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Thanks guys for the explanation for abx.

So, nope, I didnt take any abx during my pregnancy, but LJ's teeth are crooked at the bottom. They are great other than that. But then again, DP's teeth are crooked at the bottom too. I dunno...

I did hear, from another BFing mom, that BM caused her DC to have problems with his teeth. Kinda scared me, but I didn't stop nursing at night or anything.

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#64 of 86 Old 11-12-2007, 03:08 AM
 
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My nearly 3 year old son still nurses pretty frequently at night and has no cavities. I try to get a good brushing before bed, but I don't force him if he doesn't want me to.
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#65 of 86 Old 11-12-2007, 03:22 AM - Thread Starter
 
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[QUOTE=Ruthla;9703115]You don't know that "nursing destroyed your toddler's teeth." You know that she nursed a long time, and you know that she has tooth decay. Why jump to the conclusion that one caused the other?
QUOTE]

I said that because I've put a lot of faith in extended nursing and a wholesome diet to keep my daughter healthy. Overall, her health is very, very good. Tooth decay, however, is a significant problem. Both dentists blamed the breastfeeding for her decay. I didn't believe it at first, but started to think they had a point, since her teeth are so decayed.

Neither dentist had an answer for me when I asked them how I could possibly cut out night nursing since she sleeps 12 hours a night and couldn't go that long without taking in any calories. It's so frustruating.
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#66 of 86 Old 11-13-2007, 01:43 PM
 
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Well, don't listen to the dentists. They can't agree among themselves whether breastfeeding can increase the risk for tooth decay or not! But sure, if they don't have a better answer, they'll tell you it's your fault.

Decay is caused by acid that attacks teeth. The acid is produced by S. mutans bacteria. the bacteria eat sugar and the acid is a waste product. Almost everyone has these bacteria. But some people dont get cavities and some do. This is what dentists don't understand. if they knew who was going to get cavities and who wasn't, their job would be much easier. Since they don't, they tell everyone to brush, floss, rinse, etc. because it does REDUCE the risk of decay. It doesn't guarantee you won't get cavities.

I nursed DD1 for 4 years. She has 5 cavities, all in her molars, all very small.

I am still nursing DD2. Her top four front teeth are decayed and she's already had 3 small fillings in them. The dentist wants to cap them under general anesthesia but we are trying instead to stop the cavities from getting worse. Frankly, I don't want to spend thousands of dollars to have teeth capped when they are just going to fall out in 3 years.

BUT - brushing and flossing do help. We have started brushing/flossing twice a day and using calcium phosphate paste (not for brushing, but applied to the teeth after brushing) and nothing has gotten worse. In fact, the areas that the dentist filled have reformed - the fillings fell out, but the enamel regrew.

My teeth were not good as a kid - I have fillings in every molar. DH has much stronger teeth.

If I had to guess, I would say what others have said - that breastmilk by itself is actually protective, but mixed with leftover food/sugar bits in the mouth, it can spread those bits around and give those bacteria something to work on. In some kids, that will lead to decay. In others, it won't. Nobody knows why.

Oh - in the past, people lost a lot of their teeth. Kids, too. Tooth decay was more common and expected. It's only been for the past 60 years or so that we've been trying to reduce it.

A writer/runner/thinker/wife with two daughters (11/02 and 8/05), one dog, three cats, seven fish, and a partridge in a pear tree... in Vermont.
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#67 of 86 Old 11-14-2007, 12:46 AM
 
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Well my 2yo is breastfed and her teeth are fine. She just recently stopped nursing in the middle of the night but I don't think that has anything to do with it. I brushher teeth 2 times a day..morning and night.
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#68 of 86 Old 11-14-2007, 11:01 AM
 
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I would agree with everyone else. From my personal experience, breastmilk does not cause cavities, genetics does.

I would like to add this for the OP.... My son had dental surgery at 11 mos. I know it's a hard thing to watch your little one go through. But, I was never so glad to be breastfeeding him, even with the cavities!!! I watched quite a few poor little children come out of anesthesia that day and it was not pretty. When my ds started to wake and scream, I put him to the breast and he was totally soothed. Coming out of anesthesia was easy for him because I could nurse him through it.
We continued to nurse until he was 3 and a half, cavities and all. I wish he didn't have to have the problems with his teeth that he's had but I'm so glad we nursed in spite of his dental problems.
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#69 of 86 Old 11-14-2007, 11:13 AM
 
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Both of my kids nursed well into their 2nd years (DS self-weaned just before he turned 3 - DD is 39 months and nursing still) and never had a cavity.

I sheepishly admit I'm lax about brushing their teeth and we're lucky to get it done once a day.

I honestly think it has a lot to do with genetics. (that's my unscientific layman's belief)
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#70 of 86 Old 11-14-2007, 11:27 AM
 
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My 3 yo son has one bad tooth. That's it.
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#71 of 86 Old 11-14-2007, 12:08 PM
 
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I have a 20 month old son whose has cavities on his front teeth. I have been feeling bad about breastfeeding him at night, like this is my fault. I was glad to read all the replies about the enamel issue and early teeth- his top ones came out at 3 month! Right now the cavities are not bad enough to do anything yet. Let me know what you find out about the anesthesia business. Thank you
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#72 of 86 Old 11-15-2007, 12:49 PM
 
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I agree with PP - lots of times it's just genetics.

Both of my older children had horrible teeth. Dd had 6 cavities the first time we took her to the dentist at age 3. We flossed, we brushed, we flouride rinsed...it made no difference. They went to a very good pediatric dentist, and he told me that some kids unfortunately just have bad teeth. The good news is that now their adult teeth are in we don't have nearly as many issues. The amount of cavities has *greatly* decreased.

Sorry about your dd's teeth. I hope her dental surgery goes well.

A happy woman
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#73 of 86 Old 11-15-2007, 07:58 PM
 
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I think this is more genetics than anything else. When my DH was a toddler, he had a paci dipped in honey and bottles to sleep with every single night (yeah, these brilliant little tips have come from MIL ad nauseum) and he's always had great teeth.
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#74 of 86 Old 11-15-2007, 08:25 PM
 
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I think it's genetic. I have only had one cavity in my entire life and had terrible dental hygiene as a kid. My sister had great dental hygiene and tons of cavities. Go figure.
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#75 of 86 Old 11-17-2007, 04:07 AM
 
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my oldest had decay nursed until 2.2 years. i have nursed 4 others over a year 2 over 2 years without any decay. Sometimes it just happens
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#76 of 86 Old 11-17-2007, 04:07 AM
 
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some kids just have soft teeth
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#77 of 86 Old 11-17-2007, 12:05 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by attachedmamaof3 View Post
It's a combination of genetics and circumstance.

DS#1 nursed to 3.5 teeth are fine. DS#2 weaned a little earlier, issues with front 2 teeth but nothing major. DD had 2 teeth come in with no enamel due to abx during pregnancy. Still nursing
i agree. i have had both my children with major dental problems. they both had dental surgery by the age of two, and both have many caps and cavities, etc. but .... the dentist said it is caused by lack of enamel. i did and do nurse at night, and so i blamed myself... dd weaned at nearly 3, and ds is almost 3 now and still nursing. don't blame yourself. supposedly breast milk should not pool in the mouth, when nursing. that s what the lll people told me.

Kristin- Wife to J, Mommy to B (11), M-S (8), and little J (4) and J&J (7 months)
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#78 of 86 Old 11-17-2007, 10:32 PM
 
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I think human babies are meant to nurse a good long time, and I also think they're meant to eat nourishing traditional foods. Dr. Weston A. Price's work on dental health is a fascinating read - and sight - he took hundreds of pics!

My kids' dad has absolutely 100% completely, totally horrible teeth. Teeth missing, rotting out, abscessing, etc. etc. My children have all been breastfed a long time, nursed to sleep, etc. They all have perfect teeth. I've followed the Weston A. Price foundation's nutrition principles with them and I think their dental health is part of that.

One of the studies Dr. Price did I found most fascinating was with supplementing the diet of a group of children just one meal per day - the rest of the time they ate donuts and coffee kind of junk. But the tooth decay in all the children stopped. Fascinating. Just something to consider!

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#79 of 86 Old 11-18-2007, 01:37 AM
 
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What a wonderful thread! I haven't faced this yet, but have often worried about it. My mother didn't breastfeed, which I think probably had something to do with my obsessively sucking finger and getting crooked teeth, but then when dentist (TOTAL RACKET operation with orthodontist) said all my baby teeth had to be pulled over the course of a couple years so I could get braces sooner, she actually did it. What a traumatic experience I had! I remember once running out of cotton balls after one of the "extractions" and having to use my mother's tampon hanging out of my mouth.

Point being, the modern world sure hands us some things that go against the grain and we have to stand strong! I agree with the poster above who wonders about our crazy cavities, except that I think in ancient times, people had like no teeth by "old age" which was like 30!
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#80 of 86 Old 11-18-2007, 01:41 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Skrimpy View Post
I think human babies are meant to nurse a good long time, and I also think they're meant to eat nourishing traditional foods. Dr. Weston A. Price's work on dental health is a fascinating read - and sight - he took hundreds of pics!

My kids' dad has absolutely 100% completely, totally horrible teeth. Teeth missing, rotting out, abscessing, etc. etc. My children have all been breastfed a long time, nursed to sleep, etc. They all have perfect teeth. I've followed the Weston A. Price foundation's nutrition principles with them and I think their dental health is part of that.

One of the studies Dr. Price did I found most fascinating was with supplementing the diet of a group of children just one meal per day - the rest of the time they ate donuts and coffee kind of junk. But the tooth decay in all the children stopped. Fascinating. Just something to consider!
Can you provide a link or book name that you recommend?
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#81 of 86 Old 11-19-2007, 03:00 AM
 
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My ex had really bad teeth, and 3 of my kids have the same bad teeth. Two of my them weaned early. One was 15 mos and my 4 yr old was 10 mos....and I never believed a baby would self wean so early, but she did. She had to have her 4 front teeth removed last year, they were so bad. My other one with bad teeth bf until 4. My other kids all bf to between 2 and 4 and they all have perfect teeth.
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#82 of 86 Old 11-19-2007, 03:24 AM
 
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I nursed my youngest DD past two and her teeth were fine at her first checkup at age three. She has a few cavities now though but they are not nursing related though the dentist.
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#83 of 86 Old 11-19-2007, 03:25 AM
 
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My ds who weaned at 19 mos has excellent teeth. My ds who nursed until 4 has horrible, horrible teeth including extensive dental work and capping at 15 months old.

I think it's entirely genetics, but I do think that if they were prone to having bad teeth...that nighttime nursing might make their cavities worse as when I weaned ds he didn't get any new cavities and his general dental health improved.

~Mama to my boys~ to a teen, a tween & a toddler and surro-mama to twins and their sister

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#84 of 86 Old 11-19-2007, 10:23 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Evie P. View Post
Can you provide a link or book name that you recommend?
Hey Mama - here's a good article to see a few of Dr. Price's photos http://www.westonaprice.org/traditio...ry_wisdom.html

If you want to see more (TONS more) you can get his book Nutrition and Physical Degeneration. A picture is really worth a thousand words in that book. And the number of pictures in that book are worth a million words. It's just fascinating.

Read more about the Weston A. Price foundation's view on children's health in their children's section: http://www.westonaprice.org/children/index.html

I also have a printout called "How to Fix Teeth" by Diane Hopkins which is talking about healing teeth using Dr. Price's research. I can't find it online right now. I'll look today and if I can't find it I may scan it so ya'll can see it

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#85 of 86 Old 11-19-2007, 10:55 AM
 
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Sorry if this was already mentioned - but what kind of tooth paste are you using? We were using the marketbasket toddler cherry flavored tooth paste on our 2 1/2 yo, and over the course of a few months i noticed DD's teeth getting more and more yellow. Well...the TOOTHPASTE had sugar in it!!!!

So we switched her to Tom's no flouride tooth paste and i have already seen a big difference. Its worth a shot to check out what ingredients that are in the one you are using on DD.

hth

-Erin
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#86 of 86 Old 11-19-2007, 11:22 PM
 
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I think its mostly genetics. My mom put me on formula when I was 3 months old, I had a pretty crappy diet until I turned 18 and moved away, the only reason I have the fillings I do is because I actually believed a dentist when he told me I had cavities even though my teeth didn't hurt. That was earlier this year, and I am 22. So, formula fed, crappy diet ( white bread, processed everything, etc etc ) and I'm not all that fond of brushing my teeth and only do it once a day, yet I was cavity-free for two decades and counting. Gotta be genetics, imo. I've noticed that I have exceptionally "thick" teeth and they have a generous layer of enamel. My children also have "big" teeth like me, and I'm glad they do because DH's teeth are thin and weak, he's had many cavities- and he grew up with a fantastic diet!
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