Q about decisions and experiences with dental xrays for kids

Q about decisions and experiences with dental xrays for kids

Joined: August 21st, 2006, 3:29 pm

May 4th, 2012, 2:22 pm #1

Hi, all,

I recently let DH take DS (5) to the dentist, and in part as a result (I almost certainly would have declined getting them done), DS got his first set of bite-wing x-rays. Or more accurately, half his first set, as he moved and only 50% of the films are readable. The dentist thinks they show incipient decay between back molars. She wants to retake them to check again and she wants to redo the side she missed.

What do you all do about dental xrays for your kids and what have your experiences been? I know that giving them at this age is within standard recommendations but I also know that basically there is no (practical/realistic) way to do a study cost-benefit of pediatric dental x-rays; kids would have to be tracked for years, and it's just never going to happen. So dentists say, "well, the risks associated with this much radiation exposure are tiny and the films help us detect decay so therefore, x-rays must be good." But we really don't know.

So. I am not thrilled about dental x-rays and I am annoyed about them needing to be redone. In general I like our dentist (she treats the whole family including DS), but I am considering switching to a pediatric dentist for DS partly because of this. I mean, I realize kids may move during x-rays, I'm sure some do and maybe we just got unlucky -- and I wasn't even there so I can't say how careful they were or weren't about this. But OTOH maybe someone else would have done better (about keeping DS still).

???

Best wishes,
Alex

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Joined: February 10th, 2009, 9:24 pm

May 4th, 2012, 3:16 pm #2

Id switch to the pediatric dentist, and then let them take the xrays.

We first saw our family dentist for my 5 y/o. Lets just say a horrible experience when it came down to him filling a cavity on my son. He spoke very crossly to my son when he fussed about his mouth being open so long (they didnt have the correct size device to keep the mouth open), and then did a crummy job on the filling I was to later discover.

So we switched to the pediatric dentist. My kids love going there, and the dentist actually stays in the xray room and holds the childs position while he pushes the xray button. THey play with the kids before the cleaning (they have a big crocodile that they brush the teeth and other games to educate about teeth hygiene) And they use laughing gas for any cavity procedures! To summarize, going to the pediatric dentist has been an entirely different experience for my kids, and for the parents.

Our ped dentist told us that xrays are standard at this age and hopefully the ped dentist will have the latest digital equipment so your DS can have a very minimal amount of radiation exposure. You sure wouldnt want decay to harm the adult teeth!

I got my ped dentist name from my pediatrician. I guess there are others around (a few), but my ped likes this guy the best.

Good luck with your decision.

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Joined: June 24th, 2005, 12:12 am

May 4th, 2012, 5:38 pm #3

Hi, all,

I recently let DH take DS (5) to the dentist, and in part as a result (I almost certainly would have declined getting them done), DS got his first set of bite-wing x-rays. Or more accurately, half his first set, as he moved and only 50% of the films are readable. The dentist thinks they show incipient decay between back molars. She wants to retake them to check again and she wants to redo the side she missed.

What do you all do about dental xrays for your kids and what have your experiences been? I know that giving them at this age is within standard recommendations but I also know that basically there is no (practical/realistic) way to do a study cost-benefit of pediatric dental x-rays; kids would have to be tracked for years, and it's just never going to happen. So dentists say, "well, the risks associated with this much radiation exposure are tiny and the films help us detect decay so therefore, x-rays must be good." But we really don't know.

So. I am not thrilled about dental x-rays and I am annoyed about them needing to be redone. In general I like our dentist (she treats the whole family including DS), but I am considering switching to a pediatric dentist for DS partly because of this. I mean, I realize kids may move during x-rays, I'm sure some do and maybe we just got unlucky -- and I wasn't even there so I can't say how careful they were or weren't about this. But OTOH maybe someone else would have done better (about keeping DS still).

???

Best wishes,
Alex
I would definitely use a pediatric dentist--if nothing else, I'm sure they schedule delays into their day!

Dd hasn't had x-rays, yet, but she hasn't been to the dentist as a 5 year old yet. I guess I'd better check about this.

Yes, check about digital equipment. Full protective gear (also likely to be better sized at a pediatric dentist) that comes up to cover the throat.

I am not an x-ray fan, but if there is sign of decay, I'd take that seriously. What is the suggested procedure if they find decay? At this age, might they just wait for the teeth to fall out? If so, then why bother redoing it?

I think doctors sometimes do procedures out of curiosity even if treatment would not change regardless of results. So, I always like to ask just to check. But, if they would treat it, yeah, then probably worth redoing...



me:smc (single mom by choice)
FSH: 16
Dd: Conceived when I was 42 after 2 years ttc. Conceived on 6th IVF cycle after 2 bfn's and 3 m/cs.

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me:smc (single mom by choice)
FSH: 16
Dd: Conceived when I was 42 after 2 years ttc. Conceived on 6th IVF cycle after 2 bfn's and 3 m/cs.

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Joined: June 20th, 2006, 2:07 am

May 4th, 2012, 5:40 pm #4

Hi, all,

I recently let DH take DS (5) to the dentist, and in part as a result (I almost certainly would have declined getting them done), DS got his first set of bite-wing x-rays. Or more accurately, half his first set, as he moved and only 50% of the films are readable. The dentist thinks they show incipient decay between back molars. She wants to retake them to check again and she wants to redo the side she missed.

What do you all do about dental xrays for your kids and what have your experiences been? I know that giving them at this age is within standard recommendations but I also know that basically there is no (practical/realistic) way to do a study cost-benefit of pediatric dental x-rays; kids would have to be tracked for years, and it's just never going to happen. So dentists say, "well, the risks associated with this much radiation exposure are tiny and the films help us detect decay so therefore, x-rays must be good." But we really don't know.

So. I am not thrilled about dental x-rays and I am annoyed about them needing to be redone. In general I like our dentist (she treats the whole family including DS), but I am considering switching to a pediatric dentist for DS partly because of this. I mean, I realize kids may move during x-rays, I'm sure some do and maybe we just got unlucky -- and I wasn't even there so I can't say how careful they were or weren't about this. But OTOH maybe someone else would have done better (about keeping DS still).

???

Best wishes,
Alex
I had to have my boy sedated, yes, sedated for the xrays at that same age.

From my own experience, I expected to have dental work done on my kids so was on the lookout for any spot on their teeth. DS had a spot and in baby teeth decay grows quickly.

The ped dentist made us wait 6 weeks for the dental work and as a result, the estimate of caps and fillings got stepped up to extractions and caps. AND the boy had to be asleep for work to be done. At that time, just brushing his teeth at the back made him gag. Just having him open his mouth to look in, if I took too long, made him gag. It was kind of funny, actually.

So, if you are asking my opinion, if you can get the work done with your regular dentist, then go that way BUT if you'll have to have the work done by a ped anyways, get the xrays done with them to start with.

and console yourself that your boy will be seeing the ped dentist for a limited time
because they are expensive and (in my city anyways) the wait times are long; just like any other specialist.

to answer your xray question. I let them be xrayed. Only because in my family, we do get cavities and tooth decay has been linked to health issues so I like to stay on top of that.

good luck!

btw, our ped dentist annoyed me last time when I brought my DD. She had two tiny weeny cavities to deal with. This dr splits up the mouth in quadrants and insisted on two separate appts to do one cavity each time. this meant valium drink for 5 minutes work. While he could have frozen both sides, done both teeth in the same time.
Next time, now that I know, I will talk to the dentist about that. To me it felt like his best interest was his pocket book. I'd rather drug the child up once. Especially considering how tiny the cavities were.

keep us posted
jm




me:43, DH 44
FSH 26
DS: born by c-sec Apr15'03, 9lbs5oz 41wks gest. (after 4 years of ttc, starting in 1998)
DD born by c-sec Oct 13 2007, 8lbs13oz 39wk gest. (after just under 3 years of ttc)
~~DS was conceived naturally the cycle following a cancelled DE IVF, using my good friend's eggs. She was on the verge of hyperstimming.
~~DD's nat conception I attribute to using OPKs like a crazy nut, eating grapefruit daily and using preseed. also 5 cycles of TCM ending 2 cycles before that lucky cycle.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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Joined: February 5th, 2009, 2:45 am

May 4th, 2012, 5:41 pm #5

Hi, all,

I recently let DH take DS (5) to the dentist, and in part as a result (I almost certainly would have declined getting them done), DS got his first set of bite-wing x-rays. Or more accurately, half his first set, as he moved and only 50% of the films are readable. The dentist thinks they show incipient decay between back molars. She wants to retake them to check again and she wants to redo the side she missed.

What do you all do about dental xrays for your kids and what have your experiences been? I know that giving them at this age is within standard recommendations but I also know that basically there is no (practical/realistic) way to do a study cost-benefit of pediatric dental x-rays; kids would have to be tracked for years, and it's just never going to happen. So dentists say, "well, the risks associated with this much radiation exposure are tiny and the films help us detect decay so therefore, x-rays must be good." But we really don't know.

So. I am not thrilled about dental x-rays and I am annoyed about them needing to be redone. In general I like our dentist (she treats the whole family including DS), but I am considering switching to a pediatric dentist for DS partly because of this. I mean, I realize kids may move during x-rays, I'm sure some do and maybe we just got unlucky -- and I wasn't even there so I can't say how careful they were or weren't about this. But OTOH maybe someone else would have done better (about keeping DS still).

???

Best wishes,
Alex
What a coincidence - I was just calling around and deciding which dentist and pedi vs. family dentist today (we live in the same area).

I'd get the xrays and see if a pedi would do a consult from the xrays, at least to start. When I spoke to one today, the exam/consult was $50, so well worth it. Explain how you don't want more xrays if it's not necessary. I'd definitely go to a specialist for this. You can switch back to your family dentist if it turns out to be nothing.

I've taken my older DD to my family dentist where I used to live and had a great experience. But my older DD is "easy" - give her a treat and make a fuss over her and she behaves perfectly. For a child who is afraid or won't sit still, a pedi might be better.

I'm a firm believer in not having lots of xrays, for kids and adults. I regularly refuse them for my kids and me and like you would not have had them done for your DS. But, since you have and there might be an issue, I'd follow it through. I did this with a "click" in my older DD's hip when she was a baby. It turned out to be nothing, but if it had, it would have been a major issue. And that would have been worse than additional xray exposure.
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Joined: February 22nd, 2006, 4:05 am

May 4th, 2012, 8:06 pm #6

I had to have my boy sedated, yes, sedated for the xrays at that same age.

From my own experience, I expected to have dental work done on my kids so was on the lookout for any spot on their teeth. DS had a spot and in baby teeth decay grows quickly.

The ped dentist made us wait 6 weeks for the dental work and as a result, the estimate of caps and fillings got stepped up to extractions and caps. AND the boy had to be asleep for work to be done. At that time, just brushing his teeth at the back made him gag. Just having him open his mouth to look in, if I took too long, made him gag. It was kind of funny, actually.

So, if you are asking my opinion, if you can get the work done with your regular dentist, then go that way BUT if you'll have to have the work done by a ped anyways, get the xrays done with them to start with.

and console yourself that your boy will be seeing the ped dentist for a limited time
because they are expensive and (in my city anyways) the wait times are long; just like any other specialist.

to answer your xray question. I let them be xrayed. Only because in my family, we do get cavities and tooth decay has been linked to health issues so I like to stay on top of that.

good luck!

btw, our ped dentist annoyed me last time when I brought my DD. She had two tiny weeny cavities to deal with. This dr splits up the mouth in quadrants and insisted on two separate appts to do one cavity each time. this meant valium drink for 5 minutes work. While he could have frozen both sides, done both teeth in the same time.
Next time, now that I know, I will talk to the dentist about that. To me it felt like his best interest was his pocket book. I'd rather drug the child up once. Especially considering how tiny the cavities were.

keep us posted
jm




me:43, DH 44
FSH 26
DS: born by c-sec Apr15'03, 9lbs5oz 41wks gest. (after 4 years of ttc, starting in 1998)
DD born by c-sec Oct 13 2007, 8lbs13oz 39wk gest. (after just under 3 years of ttc)
~~DS was conceived naturally the cycle following a cancelled DE IVF, using my good friend's eggs. She was on the verge of hyperstimming.
~~DD's nat conception I attribute to using OPKs like a crazy nut, eating grapefruit daily and using preseed. also 5 cycles of TCM ending 2 cycles before that lucky cycle.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
since ds may have to be x-rayed. After dh did his research and he has a background in science and math, he calculated the exosure from just being in the sun and the exposure of the expected x-rays and determined that ds will have much more exposure just being outside for one day on a moderately sunny day, than if he got the x-rays.

I say do the x-rays, especially if decay is suspected. I was a 5 yr old with cavities and it's NOT fun.

Z.
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Joined: February 22nd, 2006, 4:05 am

May 4th, 2012, 8:07 pm #7

Z.
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Joined: August 21st, 2006, 3:29 pm

May 5th, 2012, 3:59 am #8

Hi, all,

I recently let DH take DS (5) to the dentist, and in part as a result (I almost certainly would have declined getting them done), DS got his first set of bite-wing x-rays. Or more accurately, half his first set, as he moved and only 50% of the films are readable. The dentist thinks they show incipient decay between back molars. She wants to retake them to check again and she wants to redo the side she missed.

What do you all do about dental xrays for your kids and what have your experiences been? I know that giving them at this age is within standard recommendations but I also know that basically there is no (practical/realistic) way to do a study cost-benefit of pediatric dental x-rays; kids would have to be tracked for years, and it's just never going to happen. So dentists say, "well, the risks associated with this much radiation exposure are tiny and the films help us detect decay so therefore, x-rays must be good." But we really don't know.

So. I am not thrilled about dental x-rays and I am annoyed about them needing to be redone. In general I like our dentist (she treats the whole family including DS), but I am considering switching to a pediatric dentist for DS partly because of this. I mean, I realize kids may move during x-rays, I'm sure some do and maybe we just got unlucky -- and I wasn't even there so I can't say how careful they were or weren't about this. But OTOH maybe someone else would have done better (about keeping DS still).

???

Best wishes,
Alex
Hi, all,

Thanks for your replies. This is helpful. We happen to have an annual checkup with our ped scheduled this coming week so I will ask her if she has recommendations; I've also asked a local friend who she uses, and it's a practice (ped dentistry) she's happy with.

I think what I will do is schedule DS's next cleaning with a ped dentist and go from there. Among the irritations of the existing x-rays is that our dentist showed them to me and showed me some darker edges on the back teeth that "could" be decay. Or not. I know this isn't her fault (at all) but it is one of the things that drives me nutty about screening procedures (FSH being, ahem, an extreme example) -- they are presented as something that will give you "an answer" (or "the answer") and in reality often just give you more questions. The teeth in question are ones that DS will apparently have until he is 11 or 12, so certainly long enough not just to ignore the problem!

Anyway, I do appreciate all your input and will make a plan after seeing our ped. and asking her advice.

Best wishes,
Alex
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Joined: February 16th, 2006, 1:10 am

May 7th, 2012, 6:41 pm #9

Hi, all,

I recently let DH take DS (5) to the dentist, and in part as a result (I almost certainly would have declined getting them done), DS got his first set of bite-wing x-rays. Or more accurately, half his first set, as he moved and only 50% of the films are readable. The dentist thinks they show incipient decay between back molars. She wants to retake them to check again and she wants to redo the side she missed.

What do you all do about dental xrays for your kids and what have your experiences been? I know that giving them at this age is within standard recommendations but I also know that basically there is no (practical/realistic) way to do a study cost-benefit of pediatric dental x-rays; kids would have to be tracked for years, and it's just never going to happen. So dentists say, "well, the risks associated with this much radiation exposure are tiny and the films help us detect decay so therefore, x-rays must be good." But we really don't know.

So. I am not thrilled about dental x-rays and I am annoyed about them needing to be redone. In general I like our dentist (she treats the whole family including DS), but I am considering switching to a pediatric dentist for DS partly because of this. I mean, I realize kids may move during x-rays, I'm sure some do and maybe we just got unlucky -- and I wasn't even there so I can't say how careful they were or weren't about this. But OTOH maybe someone else would have done better (about keeping DS still).

???

Best wishes,
Alex
Just last week we had 5 and 3yo first appt and the first one for 7yo in 4 years. So, 7yo is way behind in dental care and if I could get away with it, I would never take them. I just hate, hate, hate dentistry. I was terrorized as child and have a mouth full of metal fillings. I am also distrubed by all the invasive dental work being done to children. Luckily, we had fairly good reports with my DSs. My oldest has a "watcher" that looks like it may need a filling. He has a minor (hopefully) heart issue, so we couldn't do the cleaning right now. I will now be taking them to a pediatric dentist where there is also a orthodontist for the next appts.

I'm not too concerned about the xrays. They had full ones done on a very old machine and yeah, creepy. I tried to pull the cover over my neck to protect my thyroid and they said it would interfere with the xray. So, hello! I don't need any radiation there and they really should have a neck cover.




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