Yesterday I took the kids to the dentist for their well check. All went well - no cavities. We did have to talk about Nash and his horrendous anterior cross bite. Our dentist, Dr. Gehring, gave us several options. #1-try pushing the front tooth out with a Popsicle stick (we tried this several months ago & from the picture below, you can see it didn't work...at all). #2-Try a retainer (that can be removed...you can see where my thinking is headed, right?) or #3-Place two braces on both his front teeth, build his back molars up with resin, put braces on his back molars so that rubber bands can be placed, which will close the gap between his front teeth and pull the front tooth out in front of the bottom tooth. According to Dr. Gehring, a retainer and the braces would cost roughly the same ($600-$700). My thought was that if I'm spending that kind of money I don't want a retainer that comes out, can get lost or broken just to have to replace it. My other thought was that since our orthodontic benefits are 50/50 up to $1,000 per life time, I don't really want to use it up on something that is considered a temporary fix until he gets a full set of braces. So, I called my dentist, Dr. Lambert, who I've seen since I was a kid, my sister worked for him & he was the one who performed my sister's marriage ceremony (in short, a very trusted family friend).
Here is what Nash's bite looked like when he went in to see Dr. Lambert today. You can see the bottom right tooth is in front of the top right tooth. You can also see that killer gap between his two front teeth (also known as "Nash's favorite place to hold his sucker").
Dr. Lambert told me we had three choices. #1-A retainer (a removable one again) #2-build up his front right tooth with resin to push it out in front of his bottom right tooth. Or, #3-Popsicle stick (again, didn't work). I told Dr. Lambert what Dr. Gehring had suggested. Dr. Lambert told me that yes, we could do that, he'd just send us over to an orthodontist. I'm not too keen on seeing an orthodontist right now because I think that an orthodontist is going to want to do something that's going to cost me an arm and a leg that will only be a temporary fix until he gets a full set of braces. I asked Dr. Lambert if he felt like it would avoid a full set of braces if we did the two brace idea that Dr. Gehring suggested. Dr. Lambert kind of chuckled and said, "No. This kid is going to need a full set of braces." Dr. Lambert told me that if Nash was his kid, he'd do the resin build up on his front right tooth. I asked him what that would cost us. He told me that it would run about $80. (I'm thinking that sounds a LOT better than $480 right about now.) Dr. Lambert told me if we wanted to wait a few minutes he could put the resin build up on his tooth in about 15-20 minutes. I looked at Travis and told him I thought that was the best idea. So, we stuck around and now Nash has a slightly different colored resin build up on his front right tooth. Another bonus to this vs. the two brace idea is that the resin build up should only be on about 3 weeks vs the two braces would have been three months. We will have to go in and see Dr. Lambert about every 4-6 days until his tooth has moved all the way. Each time we go in to see Dr. Lambert he will shave a bit of the resin off so that Nash can bite down more. Once his tooth has moved completely the resin will come all the way off and he shouldn't have the cross bite anymore!
Here is what Nash's bite looks like now:
It's a little hard for Nash to eat because he can't bite down all the way. We did spaghetti for dinner tonight so it was something that would be pretty easy for him to practice with. Lucky for him it's only about 3 weeks. Unfortunately, it's smack dab in the middle of Thanksgiving time! Poor planning on mom's part. Oh well, we'll survive. :) My mom asked me if I had taken Nash to see an orthodontist at all and get an opinion from them. I told her I hadn't yet but that I would call Dr. Belnap (who did my siblings' braces) in January and make an appointment for Sam (who's missing a permanent I tooth), Nash (for the impending full set of braces), Caleb (for his horrific under bite & impending ordeal there), & possibly Brookelyn (who's baby teeth are so crowded and crooked right now it's ridiculous)! I was hoping that we'd outgrow our visits to the ENT before we had to start visits to the orthodontist. Doesn't look like we quite made it! Oh well, my kids will eventually have beautiful (and expensive) smiles!