Friday, 6 July 2012

Grey teeth after hitting mouth

Three weeks ago, S was getting a little over-excited playing with J bouncing around on the sofa (no, she's not supposed to be jumping on furniture but that's another story) and suddenly, went a bit too far forward and hit her mouth on the windowsill.  The scream went up instantly.  Hubby and I rushed over to her and, after consoling her and getting her to calm down a bit (which took some considerable time), we looked at her mouth.  Her top lip was swelling to a fair size but I was more concerned about her teeth.  Gently getting her to open her mouth and, with the greatest care that I could, I moved her swollen lip out of the way a bit and checked her teeth.  All in place, no bleeding and no wobbles that I could detect.  Phew, that was a lucky escape.

Her lip stayed swollen for just over 3 days and she talked with quite a lisp, bless her.  The swelling began to go down and by the end of 5 days, she was back to normal.

About a week ago - 2 weeks after the bump - I noticed that her top two front teeth were looking a bit darker, as you can see in the picture.  Hubby said perhaps she wasn't brushing them very well.  This couldn't be the case as she brushes her teeth morning and night and whilst I let her do the morning brush all on her own, the nighttime one I do with her to ensure that she has clean, sparkling teeth for bedtime.  In fact, neither she nor N will go to bed until their teeth have been done so even if it's late and, for some reason, we forget, we are soon reminded :) Anyway, I made sure they were brushed well morning and night but they didn't seem to change in colour. In fact, they were getting a bit darker.

A few days later, we were having dinner and I noticed that they were getting quite grey in colour.  Would you believe both hubby and I had forgotten about the bump to her mouth!?  Well, kids do so many things and I think we'd need a portable diary if we wrote down every bump/scratch/twist that happened to them both.  On realising this could have something to do with her mouth being banged, I looked up teeth getting darker on the web.  I found two excellent resources regarding teeth changing colour.  The first from Pediatric Dentistry which helped me to confirm what was happening and the second from Tom at Oral Answers who is an active blogger dentist.

I phoned our dentist and today we went on a visit to her.  S has no fear of dentists (unlike me who is terrified of them but getting braver with my girls watching me!) and she hopped into the chair whilst N tried to join her :)  Our lovely lady dentist took a look at her teeth and confirmed that the problem was indeed due to the trauma to her mouth and it was very common in young children. She said it all looked clean and no problems, a very minor bit of movement  but she felt her adult teeth should be just fine.  She did tell me that her teeth were unlikely to get whiter again (which some people have said happened to their children) as they were, in effect, dying.  However, they were also unlikely to get much darker either.  She told me to just watch out for any bumps on the gums as this can be a sign of an absess.  So, so far, so good.

Children are sent to keep us on our toes and our nerves in tatters aren't they! ;-)


I thought I'd add a quick update to this.  Now, almost a week later, S's teeth are going even more grey/red. I'm starting to really notice it and it breaks my heart to think she will have her teeth like this for the next 3 or so years but what other options are open (certainly not going to have 'fillings' to make them white again or veneers). 

UPDATE: 1st August 2012 - S's teeth are beginning to pink/white up again!  I can't believe it but it looks like the damage isn't permanent despite what the dentist suspected.  We are making a very careful effort with teeth brushing in the evenings to ensure that her gums get a good little massage around those front top teeth so whether that is actually doing anything or not, I'm unsure but I'm pleased with the result so far :)

Here's a photo taken on 3rd August. Almost back to normal :)  Glad our dentist was wrong!



UPDATE #2: May 2015 - For anyone who would like to know how she's getting on now, in 2015, she's losing her teeth slowly and as you can see from this picture, those top teeth look almost exactly the same as the others. She's very proud here that she's lost her second bottom tooth. Top ones are next!  I'll update you when the new ones come through there.



UPDATE #3: November 2015 - I had a lot of requests for pictures of S's new top teeth when they come through. One is almost through completely now and the other is just starting. Here's a photo taken today (22nd).  Hopefully you can see that the tooth is the same colour as all of her others. Hooray!  Will let you know when other one is through and post again then.




Update #4: March 2016 - Here we are with both front teeth now firmly through (sadly she's still suffering cold sores as you can see but that's another post). I hope this gives people hope for their little ones. Thank you all for the wonderful comments.


25 comments:

  1. I am so glad that I found this and that your daughters teeth are ligtening back up. My husband was rough housing with my son (4.5) and his friend and my little guy bumped his tooth and has the same thing happening. His gum was bleeding a little bit at the time and he cried quite a bit. It hasn't gotten as dark as the first picture yet, but it just started darkening yesterday as far as I could tell and the accident was two and a half weeks ago. When did they reach their peak darkness? His tooth doesn't look so bad right now but I am afraid he darkness will continue. We see the dentist tomorrow. Such a bummer and my husband feels sooo guilty!

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  2. I’m relieved that your daughter didn’t get other injuries when she got hit. She's a very cute kid! And I think you did the right decision when you brought her to the dentist to evaluate her dental condition. But I would suggest that you keep a close watch on her teeth; we could never tell if there’s some damages that happened on the root.

    Ted Grimmer

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  3. My Son hit this front top teeth when he was 18 months old. IN a couple of months we notice them getting darker and darker. We brought him to Dentist and she confirmed that this was as a result of trauma, but nothing could be done. Now he is 4 year old and the other day I noticed two yellow bumps on top of his gums right above the front teeth. Doctor is suggesting to remove the teeth now as it looks like they are dead and abscess is developing. :( So upset

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  4. Did they ever return to normal?

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    1. They never went completely cream (normal teeth colour) again but lightened up so much you really have to look and compare them to her other teeth to see the difference. She's had no problems with them since the incident either. Hope that helps.

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  5. Excellent news. Our 2 year old did exactly the same (except just caught one of her top teeth) The dentist confirmed exactly what you said, that the teeth were dying, it was probably permanent but it shouldn't affect her adult teeth.

    So what do you think it was that brought them back from the brink? Just the gum stimulation?

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    1. I'm not sure to be honest. My girls have all brushed their teeth twice a day ( I did so since they were babies before they had any teeth LOL) and I encouraged S to gentle brush around them and around the gum. They are still very slightly off-coloured but no sign of even a wobble yet which she's most disappointed about as her friends are all losing teeth now :) I think some of the discolouring may have been bruising within the gum personally but so glad she's not lost them prematurely. I'll update again when the new teeth come through to let you all know how they look :) Hope your little girl is ok.

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  6. I found your blog after searching for "greying baby teeth" after my daughter took a bad fall to the mouth. 3 weeks later her teeth look exactly like your daughters. When did they reach peek darkness? When did you start to notice them lightening up? I know this was a while ago for you but I'm so worried. Thanks for blogging about this!

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    1. Hi Shaina. Sorry to hear about your daughter's teeth. My little girls started to lose the real redness after about 2 months from the accident. Gradually over time, they lightened up more and more. Within about 4 months, they were pretty much back to normal. They aren't quite the same colour as her other teeth but you would have to look quite intensely at them to notice that and it's probably only me that does really notice that fact. Let me know how your daughter gets on.

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  7. Hi Krista! Thanks so much for sharing this very encouraging post. I'm so sorry that you and your daughter experienced this baby tooth trauma, but am relieved to read that her teeth have healed quite well over the months. My son bumped one of his front teeth about 2 weeks ago and at the time, we thought nothing of it as he barely even winced, but his teeth have gradually darkened to look almost exactly like your daughter's teeth at their darkest point in the photos above. I'm holding out hope that he will have the same type of recovery that your daughter has, and I'm very grateful that you have blogged about this. It has put my mind at ease. I will definitely be massaging his gums. Can you describe in greater detail how you guys massaged your daughter's gum? Did you buy a special dental tool? I'm only hesitant to use the toothbrush because I'm afraid the bristles might be too abrasive and cause infection on the gum. Thanks for any additional details about this process you can provide.

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    1. Hi Judy. Thanks for getting in touch but sorry to hear about your son's bump. With regard to massaging the gums, we did this morning and night just with a clean finger, very gently. My daughter was also keen to do it so managed it well herself. We have children's toothbrushes which are much softer bristled than adult ones and therefore encouraged her to gently 'brush' her gums when brushing her teeth. The gums weren't painful for her at all so it didn't cause a problem. Naturally, we did go the dentist as you read above so do make sure there are not cuts or visible damage to the tooth or gum would be my best advice before you start. I hope that helps :)

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  8. Hi, sorry to keep reviving an older post but did your dentist ever describe how bad a tooth injury has to be to turn teeth gray? My 18 month old bumps his teeth a lot but not direct falls or anything. He has a barely detectable chip from face planting the kitchen table while seated. he's always bumping his teeth with his thick plastic water cup. Sometimes bumps them on the window sill when looking out the window. I thought teeth were pretty strong so I hate to worry about this for weeks or months. It's great that your daughter went back to normal. she's real cute. There are worst things than gray teeth but, like you, I take good care. I just can't stop a toddler's natural clumsiness! thanks!!!!!!

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    1. Not at all. Glad it's still relevant to people. My daughter did a lot of the same as your son a lot - clinking her teeth with water bottles, harder toys, etc and never had an issue. She was jumping on her sister on the chair and literally came down in the wrong spot so a bang loud enough for us all to wonder what had happened. If it's any consolidation, as a child I slipped and fell, hitting my face on concrete stairs hard enough that it broke my front tooth diagonally across from bottom left to side right. I had a temporary filling done but never did my tooth change colour (unlike the filling I had their for years that did). I hope that helps.

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  9. When she has her new upper teeth, could you give an update on their condition? As a child I blackened my right upper front tooth, but the left upper front tooth was just fine (remember jumping off of a chair, failing to land on my feet correctly and going face down into the floor). The tooth was very dark from that time on. When I lost my top teeth, and their replacements came in, I noticed that the right replacement (the side that was injured) had a perfectly flat cutting edge. The left replacement (the side that wasn't injured) had a normal rounded cutting edge.

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    1. Yes, of course I'd be happy to share the news on new top teeth when they arrive (with any appropriate pictures).

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  10. I would also like to hear when the new upper teeth come through as I'm worried my DD will end up with discoloured teeth all of her life :(

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    1. Hi, of course I'll keep you posted :)

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  11. Hi folks, to let you know that S currently has two wobbly top teeth! As soon as they are out and new ones appearing, I'll get some photographs for you.

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  12. I had no idea about this until I saw this post and then went to the dentistry page. Glad her teeth are normal now.

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  13. This is one of the most important blogs that I have seen, keep it up!dentist Carrollton Texas

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  14. Thank you for your updates. So glad that your DD's teeth are normal when they come through.

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  15. Thank you so very much for sharing your daughters story! My daughter is almost 3 and hit her front two teeth just a couple of weeks ago and they are now starting to darken slightly and be a little translucent :( I was very scared until reading this.

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  16. Something similar happened with my niece also. She too hit her mouth and got same grey teeth problem. Then consulted to dentist Redondo Beach, he advised to have front two teeth removed. So dentist did his work and now she have beautiful teeth’s.

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  17. Thank you so much for sharing your story! My 2 1/2 year old fell on her face and her front tooth was bleeding and seemed a little loose at first... Now it's not as loose but has recently turned more gray, and I know that is a sign of the tooth dying, but my concern was that it was going to affect her health and/or her next set of teeth. This log was extremely helpful and eased my concerns. Thanks again!

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    1. Glad it helped. Thanks for sharing what happened.

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