Ok, so maybe I'm not cut out for this fostering thing because I am WAAAY to disgusted with the lack of concern from DCF.
We took our 5-year-old FS to the dentist. 15 of 20 teeth have serious decay. So bad, in fact, that at least two have nerve damage and will need to be stabilized with some sort of metal plates. They are estimating at least 8 appointments to get the work done. How on earth is a 5-year-old going to get through that?
I emailed their social worker and he basically said, "yeah, I know." DCF has been intensively involved with this family for YEARS. YEARS. In-home therapy, parent aids, constant DCF visits, mentoring, you name it. How could DCF let the kiddos teeth get so bad???
(And no, he was not put to bed with a bottle for at least the first 18 months -- because he was with us as pre-adoptive placement and we NEVER put him to bed with a bottle. He had perfect teeth when he was RUed at 19 months old.)
I am in MA and faced the same thing with MM. There was an open case for almost two years before he was removed and no one checked to see if he was going to the dentist or if mom was taking care of his teeth. When he was placed with me I took him and his mouth was rotted. Because he was only 4 - and would have needed multiple appointments for the necessary work to get done - his dentist (whom I love!) suggested he have dental surgery instead so he could have all the work done at once. He did and I am very glad we decided to go that route. BTW, mom knew better - P had four teeth pulled years earlier due to bottle rot - but mom chose not to do better for MM. In fact, she knew he had cavities and had an appointment to get them filled then skipped it! He had known gaping cavities for six months that she ignored. :grr: She didn't even come to his surgery but the kids were RUed two months later.
I am a dental hygienist turned foster mom. That is so terrible for your foster son to go through and you are right, it is discusting what they did to him and could cause a life time of problems even though they are "just" baby teeth, his spacing for the new ones to come in can easily be affected.
First, I would talk to his dentist about having everything done in a surgery. This will be challenging with the Medicaid but a good dentist will get it done. You may even call around to find a dentist who will. This will save your foster son the trama of going to get work done over and over again, which can also lead to a lifetime fear of the dentist (can't tell you how many adults are terrified of the dentist due to child hood experiences).
Hopefully your son's SW at least puts that info in to present to the judge at the next court date.
When I worked at a children's clinic, we turned in several parents for dental neglect but I'm not really sure how far most got. I did have a dentist I worked for have to testify in court but that was 15 years ago.
Also, see if the dentist will take before and after photos of FS's mouth (every dentist has this ablity) and make copies and give to the SW.
Oh Pa-lease. :woohoo: obviously CPS missed it. From they day he left you, until the day that you took him to the dentist, they missed it! Teeth and mouth health is very important and I'm surprised that they permitted the neglecting of his health:sick: .
Therein lies the problem. You almost have to call social services on social services. In Ohio , you can call social services or local law enforcement to report a potential neglect case. yeah right, like that would go over well!
YOU ARE CUT OUT FOR THIS and you CAN change the system. Ask the dentist to write the word neglect in his report. It may be the SW's job, but you can ask him to write it and keep a copy. Verify that the SW provides the letter to the court. I doubt CW will, because it might reveal their pat failure in advocating for him.
You may have to write the CPS director, the judge and the county commissioner....but you can make a difference. If you decide to write, be sure to write that you fear reprimand and removal of the child but that you felt it best to write anyhow . Then state that you are writing because you feel that it is in the best interest of the child that the dental situation be documented.
They have bigger fish to fry. Sad but true! My FFD had 17 of her 20'ish teeth rotted and they were front teeth too so it was highly visible and this was a family on aid so there was NO reason for no dental and it was free!
I disagree with the dentist for your FS though, they did my FFD's teeth in 2 visits, it was hard, it was long but there is NO WAY they should have to endure 8 apts....thats crazy.
Ask for sedation or gas and have them get it done. We had to go to a specialist pedi dentist for FFD's work.
Good luck, this sucks but unfortunately it is part of the deal! Sorry your little one is dealing with this.
My FFD P had 10 cavities when I took her to her first dental appt. We only got 2 appointments in before she was RU. Unfortunately, her birthmom skipped the next bunch of appointments because I kept getting the phone calls for the missed appointments. My current FS (8) so far has gotten 4 crowns, 1 root canal and 3 extractions. FS (5) just had dental surgery last week and he got 5 crowns and two extractions. They also 'fixed' a couple cavities while in there.
I agree, something needs to be done. Dental health is just as important as any other health related issue. I keep stressing to my FC how damaging soda and candy can be. They have finally realized what I'm talking about now that they've had all this work done. Thanks for the suggestion to have the dentist document 'neglect' in the children's file. I'll also talk to them about writing a letter to the SW to make sure it's documented.
How could DCF let the kiddos teeth get so bad???
More than likely because in order to act they have to get a judge to agree to it. What judge will order removal for rotten teeth? I'm not minimizing, LG had to have 8 crowns in addition to the teeth that were pulled. But in terms of immediacy its kind of low on the totem. Let's face it, at least in NC, if a child in care has an accident and needs a CT the parent can say "no". Even once removed, unless the judge specifies otherwise, the parents retain medical rights.
to take care of your dental health is very important. teeth are the source of beautiful smile. The person having beautiful teeth will always has a beautiful smile. We should always visit dentist to check the teeth health. If there is any problem, then it is better to prevent it than to cure it.
[URL=""]tooth whitening dublin[/URL]
Yep, my 5 year old FS had to be "put under" to have dental surgery. 6 crowns and multiple cavities needed to be filled.
Its frustrating, but unfortunately as a PP poster mentioned, they have bigger fish to fry and often times I think dental health is EXPECTED to be horrific.
When our former FD was 3, she had to have all sorts of things fixed & removed- we went with dental surgery at a local hospital. Our wonderful dentist doesn't do this type of thing, so had to find one that would, but it was so worth it!! She no longer said it hurt to brush and that was a big deal at our house, after a few months of struggling every time we brushed. I know it would've been great if Social Services had prevented this, but when kids are RU with parents, there's only so much time that a CW can spend on them, there are so many kids that need help. Still, IMHO, letting your kid's teeth rot is child abuse. Best of luck with getting help for your little one's teeth.
I think it's so common with foster kids, that the cw are kind of blind to it now.
We had a little guy (6 y.o.) come to us with 4 silver teeth up front, and a cavity in every. single. other. tooth in his mouth. He needed 2 root canals, and a month after arriving at our house, one of the metal teeth abcessed (not sure how that even happens).
It was horrifying.
I am horrified in general at how many cavities regular kids have these days when they're 3, 4, and 5. But seeing that mouth full of rot just made me want to punch someone. :grr:
I got my last placement because the former foster mother didn't take J to the dentist. He had bottle rot and cavities and now has braces!!
When our 3as came the two oldest were 3 and 5. There teeth were terrible. The 5 year olds two front teeth were rotted off to the gum line. He kept sying they were his second teeth coming in but they werent. The 3 year old wouldnt eat meat and I think it was because his teeth hurt when he did. They had extractions,root canals,pulpoptomies, and crowns. Amazingly they are 15 and 18 now and have never had another cavity.
That's incredibly irresponsible of them. They should know the consequences of their actions. Hope your child's teeth is alright! For the meantime, try to find a "friendly dentist" they can connect with. May I suggest