J.S. asks from Kansas City, MO on February 12, 2008
No Front Tooth 2 Year Old.
My Daughter is 2 and a half. About a month ago she cracked her front right tooth, I took her to Children's Mercy where they proceeded to put her through (the worst moment of my life) a very traumatic event. Ultimately they removed the tooth. She has begun to get a little bit of a lisp and the dentist told me that it can effect the adult teeth since not all of her molars have come in so her teeth can move. In order for her to get a false tooth we would have to go to several appointments to get her comfortable and then we will get a molding of her teeth (which is a choking hazard to young children) and then we could get something glued in, in the mean time they said she may have to get a spacer so the tooth does not center. This whole thing was very upsetting for me because I do not want all her pictures to have a tooth missing (for 6 years). Some friends and coworkers have told me to leave it and see what happens instead of putting her through more. Just wanted to get some suggestions from a few others.
T.H. answers from St. Louis on February 20, 2008
My daughter was about 18 months when she fell down the driveway at grandmas house. She lost both front teeth. I took her to the dentist for her first visit of many and he watched it every 6 months. Her adult teeth came in as normal. She did have to have braces, but not for that reason. She is 14 years old and her teeth are beautiful. I say just watch them.
S.H. answers from Kansas City on February 15, 2008
A cousin of mine went down the concrete steps in a walker, when she was a few months old and lost her 2 front baby teeth. This was about 50 years ago and the doctor said he didn't know, if she would get her permanent teeth and there was nothing they could do except wait and see. When she was in grade school, her 2 front teeth did come in and were just fine. She still has them. I don't recall anyone making fun of her and she got along just fine, since she was young when it happened. S. H.
C.W. answers from St. Louis on February 13, 2008
I have twin 5 year olds and one of them fell down not long after he got his front teeth, and cracked all four of his front teeth. I took him to the dentist and they didn't do anything for him at the time.
I finally took him to a specialist and they decided to pull all four of his front teeth. He was about 17 months old and I am with you on it being the WORST experience I have ever been through and I have 5 children. It was HORRIBLE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!
He is now 5 years old and his front teeth are probably going to be poking through any time. He didn't have any problems at all. His speech was a bit lispy, but nothing horrible.
His twin also had trouble with his front teeth and had 4 caps put on his teeth. I wish they had pulled them like they did his brothers. He has horrible bad breath and has had since not very long after he got them. He is also losing his front teeth and with each capped tooth when they become loose he gets an abscess and his breath is worse than ever. I am absolutely positive that it is the caps causing the problems.
He had more of a problem with speech that his brother with no teeth, but it has cleared up a lot.
Some children have problems with a lisp with or without teeth. He had lots of problems with the f's, p's, some other letters, but we just worked with him and it is much better.
Just thought I would tell you my experience with dental work on little ones.
I hope things work out for you.
H.T. answers from St. Louis on February 13, 2008
I'm a dental assistant and worked for a pediatric dentist for 5 years. It is best to have the spacer with a prosthetic tooth on it. It will hold the space and will look nice. We NEVER had a child choke during an impression and did several daily. They may gag, but they don't choke. I understand your concern, and I'm sorry that your child and you had to go through that.
J.M. answers from St. Louis on February 13, 2008
My husband and daughter were playing when she was about ten months old, and her two center bottom teeth got knocked out. We took her to the hospital, and they said they would have to be pulled out the rest of the way. We had a dentist called to the ER and she said the same thing. The bone is too soft, and there were no other teeth to attach the loose ones to. My daughter is six now, and is just getting her two bottom teeth in. We were told that as long as she kept her regular dentist appointments (every 6 months) they would monitor the position of her teeth, and unless they really starting shifting, there would be no need for a spacer. She was hard to understand for awhile, especially after she lost her top four teeth last year. But now that everything is coming in, her speech is fine, and is correcting itself. I wouldn't worry about it for now, just keep her regular dental appointments, and they will let you know if they see a problem forming. I know this isn't easy, and after my daughter knocked her teeth out I would begin to cry every time I looked at that gap in her mouth. After about two months, I couldn't imagine her smile without that small gap in the front. (It makes for some interesting stories and conversations too!). Hope this helps to comfort you.
J.C. answers from Kansas City on February 13, 2008
It sounds like, if your dentist is recommending all of these procedures, maybe you should get a second (or even 3rd) opinion. I agree that you don't want your daughter to be traumatized any more. And it may not be as long as you think until her adult teeth come in. My daughter started losing teeth when she was not quite 5. She lost her two front top teeth at age 5 1/2 (in December) and they are now both almost completely in. As long as you go for check ups every 6 mos and allow the dentist to monitor them, I'm guessing you'd be fine without too much intervention at this point. Good luck!
L.R. answers from Kansas City on February 13, 2008
at the age of 18 months my son also lost a front tooth falling down. i had the same concerns about pics and what not. my dentist advised me that it would be a waste of money to put a false tooth in a toddler. by the time they were old enough for the false tooth to come out the tooth would obviously look fake. i say make it a part of your childs character rather than put your child through another traumatic experience. your dentist can always watch the other teeth as far as shifting and if a spacer is needed in the future that would seem to be a more reasonable fix. my son is now 9 and we did not need a spacer, nor did his teeth shift. L.
G.C. answers from Springfield on February 14, 2008
I am a mother of a 2 1/2 year old, but my response is actually first hand! When I was 2 I fell off a porch and lost both of my front teeth. They did not replace them in any way. Of course they were missing for many years. My gums got so tough from eating without them, the dentist finally had to slit the gum line for them to come in. The slits did seem to be too far forward, but the dentist said that was how they should be. Still, I ended up having to have braces. I don't know if any one thing was responsible for the other, but I thought I'd explain what happened just in case any of the info can help you along the way, whatever you do decide.
A.W. answers from St. Louis on February 12, 2008
Hi! Sounds like you went through a lot! I am a Certified Dental Assistant, and in 15 yrs experience, have never seen a dentist replace a front baby tooth. The permanant tooth usually comes in around 6 years old. I'm NOT a dentist, but I would recommend getting a second opinion.
L.B. answers from Joplin on February 13, 2008
I agree with your friends who say to wait. My son lost his front tooth when he was 1 year old. We didn't do anything until it came in at 6 years old. In pictures it really wasn't noticeable when he smiled. His tooth did come it rather high and was out a bit further than his other front tooth. So now that he is 15 years old, he is in braces, which he would probably had to have had anyway.