Take Care of Your Teeth!

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Pramrider

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Trying my darndest to chew on some peanuts with remaining teeth awhile ago made me think of posting this topic. PLEASE take good care of your teeth! You'll be glad you did as you get older.

I never did from elementary school age on. As I mentioned in Mandi's "Social Class" thread, with my dad the way he was and mom working at night, there was no one to really get behind me to make sure I took care of my teeth. By the third or fourth grade my tooth troubles were starting. I was having painful tooth aches from cavities in my baby teeth. Every time I would try to eat the pain would bring tears to my eyes. So, my mother took me to a dentist to have them pulled. She told him to pull every one that looked bad. He put me to sleep with gas and ended up pulling four of them. :(

That took care of the pain for a time, but troubles from tooth neglect continued. By the time I was 12 decay had eaten into several of my permanent teeth. Some of the fillings needed were deep and the novacaine needles painful, especially closer to the front of my mouth. The dentist was a good one and tried to lessen the discomfort as much as possible.

With all I had been through by then you'd think I would be taking better care of my teeth, but ingrained habits can be very hard to break. As I went through my teen years, additional teeth were filled and ones already filled had larger/deeper fillings put in as the decay continued. By early adulthood I had passed the fill/refill stage. I now entered the root canal/crown restoration phase of dentistry. I also had to deal with painful absesses from previous deep fillings. A couple extractions were also done on teeth too far gone to restore.

Finally, after all this self inflicted misery, I started trying to take better care of the teeth still remaining, but it was too little, too late. The damage had been done! So now many of my molars are gone. What ones remain are missing either upper or lower counterpart to occlude with. Only a few bottom front teeth have never experienced a dentist's drill. These days, many of the snacks I enjoyed in younger years are impossible, or nearly so, to chew properly. Pop a few nuts in my mouth and it takes forever to break them up with frontmost teeth. Try chewing on licorice candy and a crown comes off. To have implants put in would cost a small fortune since they are not now covered by insurance. My only recourse is to keep going with root canals and crowns as needed, and try to hang on to the teeth I have left for as long as possible. I dread the thought of having to deal with dentures. However, I see the day coming when I may not have much choice. So, again, PLEASE take good care of your teeth while you're young and save yourselves much of the pain and expense I've gone through by neglecting mine.

~Pramrider
 

dogboy

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I am so right with you, Pramrider. Being adopted, I don't think I got the milk and proper nutrition that I should have. When my parents adopted me, my skin was orange because they said all I wanted to eat was carrots. My adoptive parents (real parents as far as I'm concerned) were on well water, so there was no flouride. As a result, I too grew up with bad teeth. Now I am going through all of the root canal business. I too have a wonderful dentist, and he is well aware that I am dentist phobic.

When I was little, the dentist that my parents took me to was in my opinion, a sadist. He never used novacaine, and he'd yell at me when I cried. One day he pulled a tooth leaving part of the root and nerves. When I went back for my checkup, he pulled the root out using just his pick, and no novacaine. If you've ever heard the expression, dancing on someone's grave, as we moved around N.J., we eventually wound up in Toms River. If you read when I talked about the boy who lived down the street who I so very much liked, well, he lived in that Dentist's house, after the dentist died and the house was sold. Every time I went to see J----, which was every day, I thought of this dentist. I would think to myself, I'm dancing old man. Take that!
 

Abercrombiestud

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I have only had one tooth filled my entire life lol. I try to go to the dentist every 6 months but he told me I was just wasting my money, he told me I have good teeth whatever that means and that getting a cleaning once a year is good enough for me.
 

ShippoFox

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My teeth are bad cause my parents are idiots that stopped taking me to the dentist after a certain age. And guess what? My mom knew I needed to go too. AND checkups are free! It's mostly just my back teeth but... I'm gonna probably end up with dentures at a young age though -_- Oh, and I've never had dental work done, so not only can I not afford it.... but it scares me a ton too! And it's not fair.... I've been taking obsessive care of my teeth.... :(
 

starshine

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Well I have seals on my molars so I basically will never get cavities there. I am also waiting on seals on the rest of my back teeth, but I think he wants to do this after braces are off. One thing I absolutely hate doing, which my dentist yelled at me about a few times, is not flossing. It takes too much time!

Now I'm waiting on getting my wisdom teeth out so I can get braces. I have really crooked front teeth, the second on the right from the middle sticks out quite a bit, and the left one sticks out a tiny bit. Then the bottom ones are pretty crooked too.That should be done within the next 6 months.


My brother, however, is only 11 and has really bad teeth. He had 4 crowns put on when he was 8 or 9 I think. But he brushes! And he doesn't eat too much junk food! I don't even know what it is, but he has something wrong that makes his teeth very fragile, and susceptible to cavities or whatever.
 

ShippoFox

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Oh yeah.... to add to my dental problems.... I have at least one screwed up wisdom tooth! It's not hurting though.... but I know it's not a good thing.
 

starshine

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Oh yeah.... to add to my dental problems.... I have at least one screwed up wisdom tooth! It's not hurting though.... but I know it's not a good thing.
Good thing it doesn't hurt! I have all 4 screwed up, they are all growing in sideways. The back left one gives me a bit of pain, but thats it. When I get them removed, they are doing all 4 in one pop, and he told me that it will hurt like a bitch... basically he'll knock me out to get them out and then put me on perks, lol. They have to actually cut my gum, and dig into my bone to get to them, which sucks.
 
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I make a good effort to brush at least twice daily. After seeing what can happen to people's teeth, I was more than motivated to prevent that happening. Besides, tooth decay is one of the easiest things to prevent from happening!

But people have commented on my teeth before. They think I've had braces (which I haven't) because my teeth, for the most part, are straight and aligned. And they think I go to a dentist often because they are in good condition and relatively white and not stained. Truth is, I haven't been to a dentist in about 5 years! :O
 

Pramrider

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It's a shame there's so much fear in this day and age over going to a dentist. Most of them are pretty good and make sure you're as comfortable as possible. They strive to do everything they can to take the fear out of dental visits. You're right, dogboy, I've heard some horror stories about dentists years ago who seemed to enjoy inflicting pain rather than relieving it. I worked with a guy who had been severely traumatized as a child by a mean dentist. He said the dentist actually strattled the chair and sat on him to hold him down while he worked on him without novacaine! I don't think I'd ever want to go near a dentist either after an experience like that! He finally found a good dentist later in life who would work with the phobia caused by the first bad one. The dentist still had to give him Valium first to get him to relax regardless of the dental procedure. I understand if you're too frightened and uptight, novacaine and other numbing medications won't work as well.

We've both made sure our kids have maintained good oral hygiene. They've seen some of the problems I've gone through. If nothing else, it's been a real life lesson for them to keep their teeth healthy.

~Pramrider
 

Tygon

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Sound advice, Pramrider... At a young age I saw how bad my grandparents & dad's teeth were. My grandmother got dentures at 30, grandpa & dad have had some nasty root canals & infected teeth that left their faces swollen, and my dad's teeth looked as small as my baby teeth because he had ground them down in his sleep due to a misalignment.

When I was 5-ish, I vowed to never have that happen to me, lol. So far so good, no cavities yet, though I did just have my wisdom teeth removed (3 were coming in good--I have a fairly big jaw--but one was crooked, and you basically need the whole set to keep 'em... oh well).
 
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daria7483

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I was fortunate to have good dental care, since I wound up needing it. I had an impacted adult canine that never grew in, so I had to have surgery to attach a chain to the impacted tooth, and it was pulled down slowly over the next year with braces. My orthodontist was so proud of his work that he took pics to be published in a dental journal. If it had not been for that, I probably would have had a huge gap in my mouth as an adult and maybe very crooked teeth.

Also, I was told multiple times that I'd need to have my wisdom teeth out eventually, since they were impacted and crooked. I was finally told at the age of 22 that they needed to come out soon, but as my dental insurance was about to run out, I didn't do it. Then about nine months later, one of the teeth became abscessed, which was not fun, and as I had insurance again I had all four cut out. Not fun either. But they're gone, and hopefully I won't have any more dental woes. I do get lectured a lot for not flossing enough, so I'm trying to work on that now.
 

IncompleteDude

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I brush everyday, but I don't floss, and I do get yelled at for it. :( Still, I use Crest ProHealth toothpaste, which is the highest in flouride that you can get, so I don't have any cavities, yay! I highly recommend it.
 

cpndl

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... One thing I absolutely hate doing, which my dentist yelled at me about a few times, is not flossing. It takes too much time!
I brush everyday, but I don't floss, and I do get yelled at for it. :( Still, I use Crest ProHealth toothpaste, which is the highest in flouride that you can get, so I don't have any cavities, yay! I highly recommend it.
I too hardly flossed at all. My dentist got on me about it and of course my gums were always kinda sore between teeth. Well she asked me why I didn't floss and I mentioned the hassle. Well she gave me a package of "Plackers". Which are little plastic things that hold a strip of floss. These make it 10 times easier to floss for me. Just pull it out and run it up and down between the teeth and move on to the next. She ended up deep cleaning one half of my gums and scheduled me to come back 6 weeks later to do the other half. Well, by the time I came back 6 weeks later, I had reduced my gum swelling so much that she didn't have to do anything at all. I did that all by actually flossing everynight, and then Brushing, and then finally rinsing with an antiseptic mouth wash. Never too late to change your habits and improve your dental health.

cpndl
 

ShippoFox

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I brush 3x a day. I floss once a day. I use equate mouthwash (like listerine) twice a day. I use anticavity fluoride rinse once a day (equate imitation of ACT). I chew gum a lot (sugar free). My teeth are still crap, but I guess they'd be even worse if I didn't take such good care of them.

I started using Crest ProHealth toothpaste earlier this year.
 

Pojo

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I didn't go to the dentist until I was either 10 or 12 (I forget which)...But I had no problems at all...I've never had braces, and my teeth are actually pretty straight...I've had roughly 5 cavities or so, so far I think, but yeah...I only brush once a day (I know, I know...) and I use that purple Listerine (it really does help...Just have to get used to the intense mint)...The only problem I really notice with my teeth, is that when I close my teeth down, my teeth on the right, don't touch each other...So I always chew on my left or front...I don't know what could even be done for that
 

Vladimir

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Fluoride is bad for health, you know. I'd rather have an overall good health than dying from cancer with all my teeth in a good state.
 

ShippoFox

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Fluoride is bad for health, you know. I'd rather have an overall good health than dying from cancer with all my teeth in a good state.
Well, that's why it's very diluted fluoride. It's diluted to the point that it shouldn't cause any harm. Plus you're not supposed to eat/drink it anyway. o_O

But if it IS THAT dangerous... then I'm f'ing screwed no matter what I do. Just.... less screwed if I don't die. :(
And why the heck do they keep putting it in stuff?!
 

Peachy

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I haven't been to a dentist in over a decade :eek: While I was growing up, my parents bought those chewy fluoride pills that tasted rather sweet, so me and my brothers keep swallowing them like crazy. I guess I have enough fluoride on my teeth to last me a lifetime. Plus it's virtually impossible to pull away that extra electron from fluoride, so lots and lots of germs and acid can pass my teeth without eating through the layer of fluoride on them.

Peachy
 

Pramrider

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Had one question for everyone.......do you still have any of your baby teeth? My son doesn't, but my daughter still has 4 or 5 of her baby molars. X-rays show there's no other permanent tooth under them to push them out. One dentist suggested pulling them and putting in bridges because they could eventually come out on their own, but I think she should hold onto the baby teeth as long as they don't cause any problems for her. If they loosen later on, then she could consider going the bridge route. Anyone have any thoughts or opinions to share on that, or have had to deal with *permanent* baby teeth yourself? Thanks!:)

~Pramrider
 

Charlie

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Lol, I've never flossed in my life. I've never really heard anyone mention flossing really (except in t his thread obviously).

I think my teeth are okay, I usually brush twice a day and stuff. Although I must admit that when I'm off college or school, I tend to forget about it. Brushing is a part of morning and night routine, so if the routine changes then I tend to forget.
I've had braces, since my teeth were messed up. I had four removed for that.
Having teeth removed was pretty fun! Having braces was very annoying though.

My teeth are straight now.
 
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