Remember my son's decalcified teeth (braces)? Update

reno_fanNovember 12, 2007

If anyone remembers, last year I was quite upset b/c DS went in for an adjustment, and when the ortho took all of the wires off, they pointed out several areas of potential decalcification. They sped up his treatment, sent us home with fluouride gels, and told us not to worry too much. Well, he got his braces off today. I'm sad to report he does indeed have several areas of decalcification. They're perfect white shadow-outlines around where the brackets used to be, and they're on VERY visible front teeth. Lovely.

All I've read online tells me they are permanent.


We're going to try a very rigid treatment plan of fluoride, and then when the teeth are built up a bit, we may try bleaching to lessen the look. A lot of sites say that bleaching only makes the white parts look worse, but I've heard others say that it helps.

Or we can sell our kidneys to pay for veneers or something.

Snookums, I know you were concerned about your son. Let my tale be a cautionary one for your son!!

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Bummer. Hope the fluoride/bleaching regimine works for your son.

Good news is that veneers, if needed, have been improved greatly over the years and now some are available that do not require any removal of the tooth structure (I know- don't even want to think about that!)

DS's front permanant teeth came in with defective enamel that looks like shadowed areas, and although bonding/filling helped, when I can hog-tie him into the dentist's chair, two veneers up front will make a world of difference.

I'm crossing my fingers you won't have to go that route!

    Bookmark   November 13, 2007 at 11:15AM
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Pecan, I was actually going to email you this week to see what dentist you use/recommend. We had to part ways with ours this year. The quality of his care seemed to be very "old school", and his office staff changed and made each visit a nightmare. He didn't seem open or aware of many of today's new techniques, so when we'd mention something to him about doing veneers, he'd tell us to do crowns instead. Uh, no thank you!

There are 4 teeth that I'd really want addressed. The shadowing on the rest of them isn't as noticeable. DS happens to have very large teeth, so these marks are smack dab in the middle of them making them even more noticeable. If I could get away with maybe 2 veneers, and bleach the rest, I may be able to sleep at night without this big knot in my stomach!

    Bookmark   November 13, 2007 at 11:33AM
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reno- you've got mail!

    Bookmark   November 13, 2007 at 1:15PM
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Good luck, reno! I think that there are amazing things happening in the area of cosmetic dentistry, so even if you don't find the right thing now, it is likely to come along soon.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2007 at 3:06PM
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If this helps...I had braces in my 30's. Despite my very good 'grown up' dental hygiene, I also had some decalcification on my front teeth that was quite noticeable at first. Bleaching (both by DDS and store brands) did/does tend to make it more noticeable. It has diminished significantly with time. You can keep your kidneys! :)

    Bookmark   December 30, 2007 at 6:08PM
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Reno_Fan, how are your son's teeth doing? This is a terrible thing to happen to a child...especially if he is/will be a teenager!

My 13yo son will be getting braces shortly. Is there anything anyone can recommend to reduce the chances of this happening to him?

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 10:42AM
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Hmmm....that should have been

...especially when he is/will be a teenager!

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 11:11AM
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Buehl, I actually think they may be improving. Chiefneil had mentioned a paste in my first thread, and I bought 2 bottles of it. It's supposed to help remineralize the teeth and help lessen the decalcification marks.

He's been using it for about a month, and I do think I see a slight difference.

From what I read on the web, several orthos now use this paste during ortho treatment to help prevent the marks from ever occurring. It's called MI Paste by Recaldent. It's around $25 for a very small tube.

I figured we'd use this for several months, then try bleaching. If we're still in bad shape, we'd do lumineers or something on just the 4 teeth that are the most heavily marked. (Just 4 teeth....I think the lumineers are like 2k each! :::gulp:::)

    Bookmark   January 18, 2008 at 7:36AM
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Thanks Reno_Fan!

    Bookmark   January 20, 2008 at 7:34AM
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Reno - I didn't see this post until just now. Thank you for posting an update. I had actually shown my son the pictures you posted of your son's teeth - he was shocked. I do think it spoke to him. I also bought him the Rota-dent - it's supposed to be the best electric toothbrush for kids with braces. So far, the ortho says he is doing ok...knock on wood. We also moved him up from the pediatric dentist to the regular dentist so he can see a regular hygenist (dentist's recommendation) so he gets adult cleanings rather than child cleanings - apparently there is a difference.

Tell your son that if anything, his experience may help prevent it from happening to other kids (again, knocking on wood) - those pictures spoke a thousand words. Thank you.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2008 at 3:40AM
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Heh heh.. those weren't my son's teeth, just a photo I pulled from the web. Glad it scared him though!

My DSs teeth aren't as bad as the photo. He only has 4 teeth that were affected, and it's a slightly white halo effect. His trouble is that he has big teeth, and so the marks are right in the middle, rather than up toward the gumline where they may be less obvious.

The paste he's been using really does seem to be making a difference, which eases my mind a bit.

Best of luck with your DS!

    Bookmark   January 25, 2008 at 3:22PM
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Hi Reno, glad to hear the MI Paste actually works! I've been using it on and off for a year, but I don't really have any way of knowing if it's actually doing anything!

Personally, I wouldn't stress about the marks much. My attitude would be that DS can buy himself veneers once he graduates from college and has a decent job. There's fine motivation for studying hard!

    Bookmark   January 25, 2008 at 4:40PM
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LOL! Chief, howya been?

Yes, the paste does indeed seem to be working. I wasn't expecting to see any results but bought it anyway thinking it would be a good build-up of protection if we tried to whiten them. I've noticed over the last few days that the marks aren't as prominent. I figured we'd continue using the paste for about 6 months and see where that takes us.

In the meantime, I'll just continue having a nice glass of wine every night. I find that I *barely* notice the marks after a glass or two....

    Bookmark   January 25, 2008 at 6:08PM
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Reno_fan, I've been working on building a coffee table. I have to say that I'm pretty psyched about the project. It's going to be a very chunky mission-inspired type of table, to replace our existing table which is more of a sleek contemporary design. I should have some pics to post over on the designing forum in a couple months!

I whole-heartedly endorse the wine solution, btw!

    Bookmark   January 26, 2008 at 12:04PM
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Uh, Chief? You *are* aware that you're single-handedly ruining it for 99.9% of the males on planet Earth?

-You're a fireman
-You cook
-You make friggin' furniture
-Okay, so you don't do venetian plaster very well, but we'll give you that one.

Come on! You're makin' the rest of our spouses look bad! ;)

    Bookmark   January 26, 2008 at 12:22PM
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Ha Reno_fax, you're too funny! I'm not a fireman - I don't know where that idea came from! But I do 'fess up to the rest, LOL.

BTW, how's the new house? I think I recall seeing photos of the remodeled kitchen a few months back, and the game room with a new sofa (was that you?). Any other remodeling projects going on?

    Bookmark   January 27, 2008 at 12:47AM
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Heh heh.... Somewhere I thought I remember reading that you were a fire chief. I suppose that's how internet rumors get started.....

Yes, the couch fiasco was me. We're on a break from that room, as right now we're tearing out our back deck and replacing it with some sort of concrete. I'm sure I'll be around somewhere looking for ideas and posting photos of our progress soon.

This is *not* a fun project. We thought we'd do all the tear-out ourselves thinking that the demo would be the easiest part. Somehow every time we'd remove a board, it seemed that 4 more grew in it's place making our pile of wood grow exponentially. Urf. We've already filled up a small 10 yard dumpster, and our 30 yard dumpster is nearly full!

    Bookmark   January 27, 2008 at 8:12AM
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