Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Mommy Guilt

Cookie went to the pediatric dentist today for her first-ever visit. I thought she had some tooth decay on a front tooth. I was wrong. She has decay seemingly everywhere. 5 teeth will need work. And the culprit: the sippy cup.

Cookie's always had sleeping problems, and a need for something comforting. At home, we use Nuby sippy cups with the soft silicone spout. Sometimes she does carry it around and uses it as more of a pacifier than anything. In the night she wakes up crying for "Milk! Milk!" If we give her water, she has a meltdown and will not quit until she gets milk. In the evenings during quiet time and reading, she has to have her sippy cup. Lately, she's given up juice and taken on a real love for milk - and lots of it.

I feel like I have been an atrocious mother. I knew that her use of a sippy cup at home wasn't good. She obviously does fine at daycare without one, but she begs for it as soon as we get into the car. If we forget her sippy cup, we have another meltdown on our hands.

But I should have been stronger. I should have insisted on water only. But beyond that, the dentist told me that the constant use of the sippy has been pushing her upper teeth forward. He asked if she used a pacifier, and when I said no I don't think he believed me.

I asked if her drug exposure could have been to blame, but the answer was "not in this manner".

It is bad. Her front two teeth were badly decayed in the back. We had never seen that. Even her new 2-yr. molars that have just come in already have cavities in them. In the front teeth, we were told it was a very close call as to whether she needed a root canal.

And now we have to wait until Feb. 21st for all the repair work.

We have to pay only $15o for the sedation. Her medical card doesn't cover sedation, and after how she screamed and flailed today, sedation is best option.

My heart is sick. I feel like my wanting to be a loving mother has in this area actually damaged my child.

I'm glad at this point she's too young to blame me. :)

At least they will use white resin to do the repair work.


Runergirl said...

Please don't blame yourself!!! We all do our best, and that's all we can do. Right or wrong, but always out of love

J. Pannell said...

Tamara, please don't beat yourself up. We all have to pick our battles, and in my opinion you've picked the right ones with this little girl! She probably has some genetic predisposition to tooth decay that has contributed. Maybe you can work on transitioning Cookie to another comfort object?

~Momma Chaos said...

Don't blame yourself! My 3yo is very sippy cup attached. Thankfully I finally managed to wean her to water at nite vs milk but it was a battle! All kiddos need a comfort item, hopefully you can find something to replace the cup or get her to water now. Regardless- it's not your fault & you were just trying to be a loving mommy!

S. said...

We had a little toddler here who would NEVER sleep unless he had a bottle of milk, then later a sippy cup of milk at night. We tried water soooo many times and the little guy just would NOT sleep unless he got his milk---no matter how hard we tried. I know how it is--and I worried about his teeth too. He went home-so I do not know if it became a problem. But I was hoping it would be OK, as our son who is a teenager now -had the same issue---he always went to bed with a sippy cup of milk (gosh till he was like 3 or 4!)--or no sleep for anyone! NONE! Well, his teeth are gorgeous and to this day only one cavity that was in a baby tooth that is long gone now! So I do believe there is some genetic predisposition for this. DON'T Beat yourself up!!! You are a great Mom---and she will be Ok. Now you know-just water only for Bit Bit when she goes to sleep!

Amanda said...

I echo everyone else. And I don't see how the dentist can rule out drug exposure - it seems like it could interact in much the same way as a genetic predisposition to decay.

Julie said...

I echo the others- Don't beat yourself up!! It is hard to break their habits- I am working on that right now with G and it is tough- I am scared she may have the same issues as she uses her paci and a sippy- I need to get her off the paci- It is just hard to watch them meltdown!!! Hang in there- it is not the worst thing- my mouth if full of fillings- :O and I am fine- :)

JUST A MOM said...


I think if everyoen of us sat and thought of the MANY time we said this you would have a long list.

hang inthere