Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Battling Tooth Decay in Children

My two youngest children have weak tooth enamel and they develop cavities easily. My daughter had dental surgery at age 18 months to fix her front teeth and my son is scheduled for surgery in June. I feel guilty that they are having dental problems and feel that it is my fault. They brush their teeth once a day but what I haven't done is floss their teeth everyday. The dentist has told me that I must floss their teeth to prevent tooth decay. I do not have dental coverage so I have to pay for their checkups and cleanings. Luckily the Canadian government has a program called CINOT (Children In Need Of Treatment) which covers the cost of their surgery and fillings. It is recommended now that children start going to the dentist as soon as their teeth appear. I know that as a child, we never went to the dentist unless we were in pain. My parents did not have a dental plan either. My teeth are relatively healthy and I have not had major decay. It is believed that weak teeth are hereditary and they could get this from my mother because she lost most of her upper teeth in her mid twenties and had to get dentures. I didn't even realize that a child could be born with weak tooth enamel until my daughter's teeth rapidly started decaying.

As a preventative measure I now floss my kids' teeth everyday and limit their sugar intake. I do not buy pop so they rarely drink that but they do drink juice and they do have candy like any normal child. I am also giving them more raw vegetables to eat because this also strengthens their teeth. It is an ongoing battle and hopefully their adult teeth will be stronger. My oldest son does not seem to have weak enamel but he will need braces in a couple of years. If you have young children, please take them to the dentist early on so that any decay can be detected early. I think I should have become a dentist or married one! Dental care is so costly.

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  1. yeah, I agree, dental care is really costly.

    I had recently got a Root canal therapy done on my teeth and damn, not just was it costly, I find it very scary to sit on a dentist's operation table.

    Thank goodness its over now.

    Prevention is always better than cure, Its good your kids have such a caring mother :)

  2. @Raj Thanks for your kind comment. I am just thankful that the dental work is covered by OHIP since I don't have a dental plan.