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Dummy - why didn't we just take it away?

(13 Posts)
StupidBloodyDummy Mon 13-Jan-14 20:17:48

Feeling like such an idiot. So much so that I've even name changed.

Took DS (4, autism) to dentist today. Practiced opening his mouth wide for the dentist and he was a star. Sat in the chair, opened his mouth, only for the dentist to tell me he has a slight underbite and his bite is also open (ie teeth don't meet at the front when he shuts his mouth). Probably caused by his dummy. Now waiting for orthodontist appointment.

Came home and I told him the dentist said he can't have them anymore. He helped me cut them up and put them in the bin. He's taken ages to fall asleep tonight and asked for it A LOT. For the last couple of years, he's only had it at bedtime. And it's usually spat out by the time we go to bed.

I feel like such a fool that we caused this by letting him keep it. He's 4, ffs, we should have taken it away ages ago. But once we started down the dx path and had so many other things to deal with, removing his dummy sort of became far less important when compared to the bigger picture. We didn't even know if he'd ever talk. Dummy was the last thing on our mind. Excuses, excuses, I know...

I don't know if there's much in the way of dental expertise on the MNSN boards, but I didn't want to post elsewhere. Feel a bit better for writing it down, but still feel like I've let him down. God, the guilt never stops, does it. sad

autumnsmum Mon 13-Jan-14 20:36:00

Don't be too hard on yourself dd2 is four and it's only in this last week she's given up her baby bottle like you say you've had a lot else to deal with

hazeyjane Mon 13-Jan-14 20:43:09

i find the guilt over dental issues one of the most difficult things. My dd1 (nt) has had to have 5 teeth out because of decay and overcrowding. It was exacerbated by reflux, but the reality was that we didn't monitor her brushing enough.

Ds (3.6 has a genetic condition) has to have 4 teeth out in March because of such severe decay, he has no enamel on his back teeth,and despite brushing as well as we can ( he has sensory issues) his teeth are shot (he also has severe reflux).

Ds had a dummy until last year. I remember feeling this awful dilemna at the time of taking it away - on the one hand he had teeth that don't meet in the middle (he still does - dentist says it is actually caused by his over large tongue) and he is non verbal (so had this idea that speech would burst forth as soon as he didn't have the dummy). On the other hand he suffered awful reflux (which the dummy soothed),slept terribly (which the dummy helped with) and was in and out of hospital having blood tests etc - taking the dummy away seemed very cruel.

When I did try taking it away it was easier than i thought it would be, otherwise I know i would have caved!

Please don't beat yourself up - we do what we do to get us and our children through.

PolterGoose Mon 13-Jan-14 20:43:18

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

StupidBloodyDummy Mon 13-Jan-14 20:58:49

Thanks all for being so nice. Still feeling like a right dummy myself!

He took comfort from it (still would if they weren't chopped up) and in coping with his scary world, I was ok with that. We tried to take it away a few times but he didn't have the understanding to know what we were doing so it just felt cruel.

I did have a google (I know, I know) and it seems a lot is down to genetics too. Some kids have them all day every day and have great teeth. Others don't have it so much but it causes a problem. My friend still sucks her thumb in her mid 30s and has lovely, straight teeth.

hazeyjane it's funny what you say about speech developing as the dentist tried to hint that maybe the dummy was the reason for DS's speech delay. I just nodded while thinking, "no, that'll be the autism...".

If it wasn't for my dry January, I'd be having a glass of wine.

autumnsmum Mon 13-Jan-14 21:14:26

Stupid I have terrible teeth and had braces for years I never had a dummy it's genetic and runs in my family please don't be so hard on uourself

Mrsmorton Mon 13-Jan-14 21:27:28

As he's still so young you may find they settle into place now. A family friend has a daughter who used to think I was cooler than the other side of the pillow (she probably doesn't now, I reckon she's on a beach somewhere in Indonesia) and she sucked her thumb until she came to see me at age ten. I was in cahoots with her parents who were desperate for her to stop it and I said "oh look at how your teeth are, if you stop sucking your thumb right now they will be beautiful by the time you're old enough to have a boyfriend" wink

She stopped there and then and the next time I saw her, everything was looking lovely.

So, don't beat yourself up about it!! It's all a risk vs benefit analysis and as hazey said, if it helps with difficult stuff and keeps you sane with sleeping through etc then it's worth the risk of having wonky teeth.

Mrsmorton Mon 13-Jan-14 21:28:17

but autumn is incorrect, it's not all genetic. Genes play a large part but these parafunctional habits play an equally large part.

lougle Mon 13-Jan-14 22:59:27

I'm convinced that baby teeth are there to allow parents to make mistakes the first time round and correct them the second time around smile

It doesn't matter, in the scheme of things.

DD2 sucks her hand and I worry about the effect on her teeth. I can't cut her hand up so I've just got to put up with it wink

zzzzz Mon 13-Jan-14 23:59:34

FromMrsMortons story we can take away that with free access to sucking (ie thumb) for 10 years (ie one and a half times again what your ds has done), things self corrected.

Since we suspect the child in question is now a beach bunny, we can probably assume she doesn't have autism (because it's less likely not impossible obv.).

I think that reads as, you had more need have done less damage and have a good chance of resolution.

Try not to beat yourself up about it. Guilt is only a useful emotion if you learn and improve, otherwise it just makes you less.

Hang in there.

StupidBloodyDummy Wed 05-Mar-14 16:11:31

I thought I'd just update this in case the information is helpful to anyone else in the future.

We had the orthodontist appointment today and it went really well apart from DS being scared, not wanting to sit on the chair or open his mouth. He does have a slight underbite but it's likely genetic as we have a close family member with a much more severe underbite. She said the dummy definitely didn't cause it and he'd still have the underbite even if we'd never given him a dummy. She actually said that as long as dummies are gone by 5 years, usually the teeth will move back to the right place.

He's too young to do anything at the moment but she wants to see him in a couple of years.

So not great that he might need work later but I am very relieved that it wasn't the dummy that caused it.

amistillsexy Wed 05-Mar-14 16:23:32

I'm so glad the orthodontist has told you this. I was just about to post the same thing, after reading your OP, when I read your update.

Please, please don't give the dummies another moment's thought. You allowed your DS to have comfort when he needed it-that security will stay with him forever and is worth so much more than straight teeth!

HaveAcuppa Thu 06-Mar-14 11:26:11

Glad your mind is at rest.

My DD is now 13 and has huge sensory issues. She pleas to me to let her have a dummy! we got rid at them when she was 5 and I don't think she has ever forgiven me. We still have teething rings around the house and other sensory things to help but she still wants a dummy.

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