AIBU (on behalf of friend) to blame myself for my baby's dental decalcification?

(26 Posts)
albertcamus Tue 09-Nov-10 12:40:09

My friend's beating herself up due to her beautiful baby's front tooth having come out with a yellow mark. This was described by the dentist as decalcification caused by lack of calcium during pregnancy. I think she's blaming herself unnecessarily - does anyone have any exp of this?

ColdComfortFarm Tue 09-Nov-10 12:43:20

nobody knows why some babies are born with incomplete enamel - and I was told that by a PROFESSOR of dentistry at a teaching hospital, not a local drill and fill merchant. It can be due to illness in pregnancy or it can be one of those things. I feel sorry for your friend. I was told by a similarly ignorant dentist that the reason my son had tooth decay was because I fed him sweets all day. He had incomplete enamel on his baby teeth. angry

TattyDevine Tue 09-Nov-10 12:44:01

I dont see how this can be her "fault" in that if she genuinely knew she wasn't having enough calcium that this could happened, she probably would have happily taken some/ate some. She's not psychic.

Having said that if she was being a stubborn I know best vegan or something despite being warned about her diet by a dietician or some such unlikely scenario, I suppose you could then have regrets.

Otherwise, I think she should try and let it go. Will their permenant teeth be effected?

albertcamus Tue 09-Nov-10 12:44:32

Thanks CCF, much appreciated

ColdComfortFarm Tue 09-Nov-10 13:00:15

it really makes me cross when dentists automatically blame parents. High fevers during pregnancy or babyhood, taking antibiotics, various medical conditions and trauma are all causes, and often the cause is unknown. One study I have seen indicates that when women take extra calcium in pregnancy their children tend to have fewer fillings age 12, but that doesn't mean not taking extra calcium causes incomplete enamal.

PlentyOfPockets Tue 09-Nov-10 13:18:57

DS suffers from this. It can affect the adult teeth too. The dentist put this plasticoat stuff on his adult molars as they grew through which seems to have protected them.

hifi Wed 10-Nov-10 09:17:48

it can also be caused by taking heroin/crack cocaine as well.

Poledra Wed 10-Nov-10 09:21:54

My DSis had terrible baby teeth. My mum was told by 3 dentists that clearly my sister was getting too many sweets and fizzy drinks, which upset my mum greatly as she was careful about all that. Then we moved to a new dentist when my sister was 6. The first thing he asked my mother was 'Were you ill before she was born, or was she ill afterwards?' My sister had been very ill after birth and required a complete exchange blood transfusion. My parents stayed with that dentist until he retired last year. smile

My sister's adult teeth are strong and healthy - she has 2-3 fillings and she's now <ahem> well over 40.

fedupofnamechanging Wed 10-Nov-10 09:38:30

Is decalcification the same thing as hypoplasia? If so, my dentist said that it can run in families, so not necessarily caused by something the mother did during pg

scoobytoo Wed 10-Nov-10 09:38:39

I have this and so does my dad, I think it could be hereditary?

emy72 Wed 10-Nov-10 09:41:00

It is hereditary, I have this and my third child has this too. To be fair the dentist also said it is hereditary.

I have never heard the calcium argument before!!!

(Not possible for this to be true as a) it didn't happen with my other 3 children, b) I drink loads of milk and eat lots of cheese too!!!)

Euphemia Wed 10-Nov-10 09:46:32

DD suffers from this, and I changed dentists because her dentist made me feel like it was my fault. I'd been seeing a private dentist for years, and took DD to the local NHS dentist. I mentioned DD's teeth to my dentist (he had never even met her) and he spent 20 minutes telling me about how hypocalcification happens because of trauma in the womb (I told him I'd had PE and he said that was the cause in DD's case) and that in no way was it my fault.
He offered to take DD on as an NHS patient and so I told the other dentist to get lost.
It's rare for the adult teeth to be affected: DD is 8 now and her adult teeth look fine; no sign of hypocalcification at all. grin

cory Wed 10-Nov-10 09:58:32

My dd had one of her adult teeth come through without enamel, but dentist made it perfectly clear that this is due to illness/antibiotics when those teeth were being formed. I know dd was ill quite a bit round about the age of 5- not a lot I could have done about that.

bruffin Wed 10-Nov-10 10:07:34

DS had a similar problem Cory, his adult back teeth needed filling within weeks of coming through. Our dentist said it was bad diet. The dentist who actually filled his teeth, said he had fluridosis caused by too much flouride when his teeth were forming.

Guess who recommended the flouride tablets when he was 4hmm

Interesting about the PE affecting teeth as I has PE from 32 weeks until he was born at 38 weeks.

KickArseQueen Wed 10-Nov-10 10:18:08

Sorry, PE????

My dd1 has this and DS1 DD2 and DS2 don't, I had it on my baby teeth and so did dp, I have probs with my adult teeth, dp doesn't..................

perfumedlife Wed 10-Nov-10 10:22:42

A friend's child had to have every single baby tooth removed due to this, and the adult teeth may also be damaged according to dentist. It is apparantly to do with pregnancy but in her case she blames herself for drinking booze throughout (drink problem)

I think the dentist said the jury is out as to the root cause though. I hope your friend doesn't beat herself up, it's hard enough worrying about kids without blame.

rockinhippy Wed 10-Nov-10 10:34:05

DD has had this same problem too, tooth removed at only 2yrs as a result

I felt like cr@p about it too, you can't help it, but I also knew she'd had an exceptionally healthy diets, & not even any sweets etc at that age,

the Dental Hospital Doctor did say that it can be down to milk in a bottle concentrating it onto her teeth, our Dentist agreed with this, but also said about the weak enamel making her more vunerable & it was something that just wasn't properly understood, I was doing all the right things with her diet, teeth cleaning etc & to not blame myself

I do have a good friend who works in Alt health care, & she reckons there are some studies on this from that angle, & a theory is, that Mums under a lot of stress during pregnancy seem to see this problem more often in their kids, it certainly fits with me, & with a few other families I know, whose Kids also suffer with this.....

if this theory is true, then realistically, you can't blame yourself, stress happens & can't always be avoided, even if you DO know its not good for baby

There is a coating you can have put on their adult teeth if she is still worried then, a friends had both her Kids teeth done, & it seems to have helped, as now adults & no problems I've spoken to our Dentist about this, & he has said it might be a good idea, but to wait & see how her teeth are when they've all come through

backwardpossom Wed 10-Nov-10 10:40:11

PE: pre-eclampsia I'm guessing

RoonilWazlib Wed 10-Nov-10 10:47:38

I think this must be what I had but did not realise it had a name. I had a coating put on my teeth when I was in my teens.
My ds has it, the dentist said it was nothing to be worried about and that his adult teeth should be ok.
I was worried I had done something, that I hadn't brushed his teeth enough or well enough. It was a relief. I do hope his adult teeth are ok.

duchesse Wed 10-Nov-10 10:56:32

I doubt it's due to a lack of calcium. An illness in pregnancy can disrupt calcification, or some babies are born with naturally lower levels of enamel. As long as the teeth are well looked after and don't go horribly bad the baby's adult teeth should be fine. My friend's two daughters had terrible baby teeth, but their adult teeth are beautiful and perfectly well calcified.

Tell your friend her dentist is wrong, and try to reassure her about her baby's adult teeth.

albertcamus Wed 10-Nov-10 12:16:07

Many thanks to everyone - she has read all your replies and is very grateful

albertcamus

CardyMow Wed 10-Nov-10 18:30:35

It can also happen if you have severe (requiring hospitalisation) hyeremesis gravidarium during pregnancy. I've had HG in all my pregnancies, but was farand away the worst with DS1,I spent 19 weeks out of 40 in hospital on IV meds and drips for rehydration - his baby teeth were affected, he's even had to have one back tooth removed, and the dentist has had to paint his adult teeth with 'fake' enamel as they come through. I feel terrible, but it's not as if I could have done anything about it, I didn't choose to have HG so badly.

Hulababy Wed 10-Nov-10 18:36:13

number of my DD's back milk teeth have very little enaml on them. Some of them look quite brown now (ay 8y) and some are starting to crumble. One has had to be extracted. Fortunately they are back teet and can;t really be seen. there is nothing we could have done to prevent them crumbling or having to be taken out and the dentist feels we have been lucky to get this far and only have had one out. Fortunately, so far, her second teeth are coming through with proper enamel coverage.

On possibility for it may have been that I was so sick in the early months of pregnancy with her. But it isn't my fault - just one of those things.

onceamai Wed 10-Nov-10 20:31:54

We've been there. DD had to have four molars removed before she was 5. Think it may have related to iv antibiotics when I was pregnant. Baby teeth drop out, usually to be replaced by good healthy second sets.

sundew Fri 12-Nov-10 23:37:22

Hi my dd1 has no enamel on her baby teeth molars. She was exclusively breast fed and no illness in pregnancy. I just happens sometimes. nothing you can do about it apart from ensure that you keep those teeth as clean as possible.

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