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#1 of 15 Old 01-29-2003, 08:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi everyone,

I first came to MDC after reading the issue of Mothering dealing with cavities this summer. It was perfect timing for me, as I'd just found out to my horror that my 20-month-old dd had 7 cavities. This was really difficult for me to deal with, and MDC helped a lot. One thing I found especially hopeful was reading the updates and happy endings.

So, now it's my turn -- my dd just had her 6-month follow-up exam, and there are NO PROBLEMS! Cavity-free!! I was really really concerned, 'cause there's still a bit of wonkiness (invisible to anyone not obsessively checking her teeth in various types of light, but still) but the dentist said that they were just leftovers from when things were messed up, which were weaker and therefore more susceptible to cavities, yes, but not cavities. WHEW!

What's more -- part of what concerned me so much about the fillings was the worry that it would start a lifelong fear of the dentist. We've talked about it a lot, read books ("Dr. DeSoto" by William Steig is a good one) but I was still concerned how she would react today, especially since this dentist has a policy of not allowing parents to go back with the kids. Well, she went into the assistant's arms with no complaint, and walked out a bit later showing me her bag of goodies, quite calm and composed -- she didn't cry once! Not during the exam, even. The assistant told us she was a bit nervous but very, very good, opening her mouth when asked, etc. We talked about the whole thing later and acted it out, she as the dentist, and she took a cloth and wiped my teeth very gently.

So -- no cavities, she likes the dentist (we had lunch across the street and she said when we were done, "I want to go back so the dentist can brush my teeth!" ), and things are generally better than I ever thought possible 6 months ago. Won't relax my vigilance -- lots and lots of brushing, morning and night with flouride -- but sure is wonderful to know things are fine.
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#2 of 15 Old 01-29-2003, 09:20 PM
 
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sozobe, I have to just say:

I KNEW IT!

I just knew she'd be fine. I'm so glad she loves the dentist so, that's so important.

Oh, HURRAY!

And pat yourself on the back, mama; you don't say anything in your post, so I will say it myself. You were diligent, more than diligent, about your research and your efforts to keep her cavity free. You have been textbook-perfect in your work to keep the weak areas from progressing, and YOU HAVE DONE IT! Don't hesitate to give yourself all the credit, because you deserve it. It's not easy, and it's constant work, as you know, and a lot of moms would have given up, thinking, oh, well, she's had this many, she'll just have a few more. Or surrender to the old "she's just got soft teeth" excuse. YOU DID IT!

You have worked hard for this! Congratulations, sozobe. And thank you so much for coming back with the update, I have been thinking about your upcoming visit and hoping for this very thing.

Hurray!
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#3 of 15 Old 01-29-2003, 11:28 PM
 
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Whooohooooo!!



That's so good to hear! Your dd was great ~ and I just know that's because she has such a great mom to guide her through all this.

Isn't it just the best feeling in the world when you know your baby is fine and happy?
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#4 of 15 Old 01-31-2003, 01:57 AM
 
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#5 of 15 Old 01-31-2003, 08:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
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THANKS!!!

It is indeed a wonderful wonderful feeling.

Thanks for bumping it up, too -- I checked in a few times and saw the "0", so missed this 'til just now.

Now, I have to make sure we keep this up, rather than thinking of it as an achieved goal and be done with it. The other good thing though is that dd has become really good about having her teeth brushed -- opens wide, no complaints (usually) -- so no reason NOT to keep being vigilant.

Anyway, thanks so much for your good wishes, and SO much for your good advice and support. It is in no small part because of you that I didn't stop night nursing, smilemomma, and while dd actually is pretty close to that (still nurses to sleep but usually sleeps through the whole night, and has fallen asleep on her own several times, no nursing -- a new development), I think it made a BIG difference for everyone's mental health that it wasn't rushed.

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#6 of 15 Old 09-05-2003, 10:29 PM - Thread Starter
 
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One year checkup was fine!!

And she loves going to the dentist, too.

This has all turned out so much better than I ever dared hope when I first found out about cavities. Vigilance, vigilance, vigilance, but we're certainly thrilled.
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#7 of 15 Old 09-05-2003, 10:40 PM - Thread Starter
 
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And I already said this earlier and in another post too, but you, smilemomma, are probably most responsible for the fact that I didn't rush nightweaning, and we just did so in a way that was not stressful and felt very right. I really appreciate that your knowledgeable advice helped me avoid what would have been a very difficult transition and would have added a lot of stress to a very stressful time.

Thanks!!
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#8 of 15 Old 09-05-2003, 11:15 PM
 
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Sozobe, Your experience is very inspiring!!! Thank you! I too am brushing often and using flouride twice a day to chase the cavity bugs out. I would like to know, is there anything else that you do that has been significant to the clean slate????
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#9 of 15 Old 09-05-2003, 11:30 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi malamamama,

Looks like our kids are just a couple of months apart!

Hmm... the only thing I can think to add is that we don't just brush often, but brush anytime anything but water passes her lips. If she nurses, we brush after. If she eats crackers, we brush after. After dinner, we brush. After lunch, we brush. Etc. This isn't 100%, but it's default mode, and what we do almost all of the time.

Because of the "anything but water..." part above, she drinks a lot of water. From the tap, so some flouride. My DH figured out that a liter of water has as much fluoride as a cubic centimeter of fluoride toothpase. (We would never use that much toothpaste, but he liked that factoid. ) We don't forbid juice if she is in the mood, but again, default mode is just water in her sippy cup/ cup.

We haven't changed diet much at all -- always offered water before juice, which she has rarely, still give her the occasional cookie or ice cream, just make sure she brushes right after.

That's all I can think of! (For now, anyway. ) Brushing a lot, as soon after meals as possible, and with fluoride twice a day are the main things that I think helped.

Good luck! You can do it!
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#10 of 15 Old 11-13-2003, 04:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi all,

I posted something on rebx's thread about worrisome brown spots... hied dd to the dentist, and turned out it was just gunk that they cleaned off. They said that because of the irregular surfaces left by the whole Seven Cavity Incident (i.e. not just the cavities themselves but various problems caused by all that tooth-eating bacteria), no amount of brushing can get it all. They said it was important to get it off, though, as it's a prime breeding ground, so I feel a little less hypochondriacal. (Is that a word? : )

The main thing I was really worried about was fluorosis, though... warning to anyone who might be worried about that, do NOT look it up on the Internet!! Scary stuff. Graphic pictures. I was a nervous wreck. ("The cavities were bad but they were on baby teeth and were fixable, now I'm going to make her PERMANENT teeth all brown and mangled...!") (Can you believe I really wasn't a worrier at all before I became a mom? Geesh.)

Anyway, that was not happening at all, her teeth after being cleaned are nice and pearly-white again. I was reassured that I couldn't be giving her too much fluoride with what we are doing -- smidges morning and evening, no supplements, steadily getting better about swishing and spitting.

It takes a LOT of fluoride for the bad stuff to happen.

Separately, she seems to be weaned! Happened pretty painlessly overall, gradual, she had a grumpy period that lasted about a week or so as she adjusted. I had been shooting for her 3rd birthday, which is in about a week, so happy with how that worked out. And VERY happy I didn't hurry things along way back when... this was just about perfect for both of us. Many thanks, again, to Smilemomma for her role in reassuring me that I didn't need to. Was really a huge factor for me.
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#11 of 15 Old 11-13-2003, 06:42 PM
 
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double post
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#12 of 15 Old 11-13-2003, 06:46 PM
 
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Good, good!!! Congrats on weaning to you and dd too!
I remember Smilemomma saying that about staining from flouride (which is not flourosis) being removable at the check-up cleanings. Was this partially staining? Can you get that "gunk off at home too, or does it take dental tools?
I know what you mean, it seems that after we experience what we experience and learn what we learn, we are hyper sensitive to any little thing in our dc's mouth! I sometimes get all freaked about shadows!!!!!:
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#13 of 15 Old 11-14-2003, 01:52 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks!

The way I understand the fluoride vs. gunk thing is as follows -- Smilemomma or someone else who knows for sure can confirm or correct:

The brown gunk on dd's teeth was gunk, removable only with dental tools. They were saying that I couldn't expect to remove it with toothbrushing.

The light tan remineralization that came up earlier and Smilemomma assured me was normal did not change color... it's still light tan.

So what I take from that is the fluoride-aided remineralization is sometimes tannish, and that's not removable (at least not in terms of lifting it off... you can probably whiten it or something.) The brown stuff I noticed was actually stuff, that was adhering because of the rough surfaces left by the whole cavity episode. As in, normal teeth are very smooth and stuff doesn't adhere very well, but when she had the seven cavities she had all kinds of other stuff going on -- white lesions, etc. -- and that left a rougher surface than what is usual, that catches actual food particles.

(It was pretty minute, really... a little bit in between the four front teeth along the gumline. Happened to see it in bright light, though, freaked, called dentist. Glad I did, VERY glad it's just gunk.)
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#14 of 15 Old 11-14-2003, 02:13 AM
 
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Yup, Yup!

Nothing like a dental incident to turn a mom into a dentist!! Simonee, Malamamama and Sozobe, you all went through so much with your babes dentally and have come through it all so beautifully and so very well informed. Spread the word! And of course, many thanks for continuing to come back and help other moms here through all this.

Yes, I totally get the worry thing. If everything's wonderful, I just make up stuff to worry about now!



Sozobe, I can't begin to tell you how much it means to me to hear you say that I helped ease your breastfeeding relationship in some way. I do teeth all day, every day, so I guess I'm used to the helping there, but wow, it makes me feel so good to have eased your mind to let you follow your heart, and of course helped your sweet daughter have her "snuggles" a bit longer, until she was ready to move on. Congratulations on a gentle weaning and a new step.

They're very nearly the same age as your daughter. That always made me picture her and feel for her as if she was one of my own little bugs ...

And Kanani too!
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#15 of 15 Old 11-16-2003, 06:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Wow, Smilemomma, I didn't realize our kidlets were so close in age. I guess it was because of all of the reading of the archives that I did, where they were referred to as tiny (and my dd was ~20 months old).

2000 WAS a good year. We've got those magnificent dragon babies, the lot of us.

Smilemomma, I swear you should get some kind of humanitarian award for your work here. Fantastic!
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