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Acid erosion - could there be more to this than just diet?

(14 Posts)
Eggsbon Tue 25-Jun-13 21:31:32

Ok, so I'm feeling a pretty awful parent right now. I first noticed my toddlers front teeth were quite yellow when he was just over a year old (he only got his first teeth at 9months). I took him to the dentist, but my son wouldn't open his mouth, so was sent away being told I needed to persevere with cleaning his teeth (my son wouldn't let us clean his teeth, but would put the brush in himself and have a little go.)
6 months later I took him back as I was still concerned and noticed the enamel was damaged. Again a different dentist told me not to worry, as long as he was getting the brush in there and establishing a routine it was fine, but yet again my son wouldn't open his mouth.
6 months later I took him again, yet again a different dentist. This time he saw the teeth and confirmed it was acid erosion (which I had now begun to suspect).
I told the dentist that my son loved fruit (especially berries), but was a fussy eater when it came to veg, so I would often blend them in to a tomatoe based sauce and serve with pasta. He has only ever drunk water or milk, never had sweets, stopped drinking milk from a bottle at 12 months, so i thought i was doing everything right!
I do wonder whether he had acid reflux as the teeth didn't seem right very early on when he wasn't such s picky eater. He was also a big dribbler up until 15 months, saturating around 3-4 bibs an hour). I also think that he has bad breath at times, however I've read reflux often affects childrens sleep, and he has always been a very good sleeper.
I wondered whether anyone could offer me any advice or if they have had similar experiences. Could it just have been his diet that caused this? Would it be worth trying to get a referal to a paediatric dentist or speaking to the doctor? Can anything like a coating be put on the teeth to prevent further erosion? Other than a radical change to his diet I am at a loss as to how to help him... I know he will lose these teeth, but he's only 2 1/2 now and 6 seems such a long way away!

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 25-Jun-13 22:07:28

DD had this and fruit was the cause. She now has a little piece of cheese after the fruit to neutralise the acid. And things have stopped getting worse.

Eggsbon Wed 26-Jun-13 01:05:32

Thank you, good tip...although cheese is one of the (many) things my son refuses to eat (argh!!!). I have been told no acidic food for snacks, only as part of a meal. It's so frustrating isn't it - when you think you are giving your child the healthy option, you are actually doing more harm than good!

mawbroon Wed 26-Jun-13 22:57:10

Is it the front teeth? One cause of this can be a lip tie. Some ties make little pockets where the food/drinks can collect and damage the front teeth.

EldonAve Wed 26-Jun-13 22:59:07

yes they can put a coating on

frequency of eating can also affect the teeth

Eggsbon Wed 26-Jun-13 23:55:08

Yes, it's the front teeth, top and bottom. Interesting about the lip tie, he had a severe tongue tie when he was born which was snipped, but it still has the appearance of being quite square. I mentioned the tongue tie to the dentist, but he said it was unlikely to cause the acid erosion. I will have a look and see if he looks like he has a lip tie too (can't be too severe if he does, as I'm sure I would have noticed!)

Thanks EldonAve, I'll looking in to coatings. Any idea what they are called?

StupidFlanders Thu 27-Jun-13 00:19:05

My ds had almost no enamel over half his teeth. The good (expensive) dentist said its from when his teeth formed in the womb-nothing I could have done-next teeth will be fine.

The free dentist who fixed them made me feel like shit and talked down to me at every chance. "Children need to brush their teeth just like adults".

The expensive dentist was going to coat his teeth with a clear resin type stuff, the free one gave him some feelings and pulled a tooth out.

He had never had juice, mostly ate my sugarless organic food (pfb) I gave him fluoride tablets and brushed his teeth at least twice a day.

Haven't had any problems with the others who live on junk and brush their own teeth in a very dodgy manner.

mawbroon Thu 27-Jun-13 09:48:32

Ah, if he has a tongue tie, then there's a really good chance that he has a lip tie too. It may not be "severe" as in restrictive, but may make perfect pockets for collecting food or liquid.

here's an example

It seems to be that the people in the know about this look for the gum blanching when you lift the upper lip, and also for pocket shapes.

Where do you live? There are a couple of dentists who trained with Dr Kotlow who do laser revisions of tongue and lip ties. I am wondering if he still maybe has a posterior tie if you say his tongue looks square.

Might be worth joining the tongue tie babies support group on facebook (just ask to join and admin will approve you) for more info and opinions.

mawbroon Thu 27-Jun-13 09:53:41

Oh, and also, if there is still a restriction of the tongue, it can sometimes be difficult to sweep the teeth properly with the tongue which can sometimes result in decay.

And, the dribbling may also be a result of a tongue tie.

Eggsbon Thu 27-Jun-13 10:37:10

Thank you for all your suggestions. I have just booked him to see a private paediatric dentist and I'm hoping they will be able to get to the root of the problem and give me more solutions than "don't give him acidic food for snacks". It's expensive, but I'm so relieved to be getting a second opinion...

I will definitely join the tongue tie support group.

Hercule Thu 27-Jun-13 10:44:35

My friend's little girl had one of her front teeth come through with no enamel on at all. She was told it just hadn't formed properly in the womb and the grown up teeth would hopefully be ok. Don't feel bad, sounds like similar case with your son, as long as you take steps to minimise damage that's the best you can do. Perhaps good idea to get second opinion from another dentist if only to put your mind at rest.

My children had similar diets to yours, in fact dc3 had considerably more sweets/pop from early age due to influence from his older siblings ( bad mum alert) but his teeth are ok. Probably a large element of luck of the draw like a lot of things with kids.

Damnautocorrect Thu 27-Jun-13 10:56:07

Also, don't forget to leave it an hour between last food/ drink and brushing. As you can scratch the enamel away

Eggsbon Wed 10-Jul-13 09:12:46

So just to update, I took him to the paediatric dentist and she said that his front teeth didn't form properly in the womb at around 12 weeks. She said that there was nothing I could have done to prevent this and it wasn't down to his diet! They won't do anything at the moment, but he needs to visit the dentist every 3 months, so they can keep a close eye on the teeth. If they start giving him pain, he may need crowns...
I have mixed feelings about this, a huge sigh of relief that I didn't do this to him, but the worry that there is really nothing I can do to help his situation.

Tigerblue Wed 10-Jul-13 10:21:40

My daughter had an accident with her front teeth when she was 18 months and her second teeth grew through with damaged enamel (she has brown lines on them). Every time we go to the dentist, he puts some kind of treatment on the teeth and his advice was not to stop her eating fruit but always to drink water afterwards.

I suspect eventually she will loose them, but she is now seeing an orthodontist who has agreed to give her braces, so even though the teeth are damaged and sensitive, the orthodontist is still willing to invest in them.

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