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FAQ:  Cleft Palate

  • Bone graft - implant for cleft palate: My son who has a cleft lip and cleft palate had his first bone graft when he was 7 years old. His doctors want to do a second bone graft for orthodontic purposes now that he is 13 years old. However, they told us that this second bone graft may not be enough since 5-7 years from now by the time he needs the implant his face and bone will continue to grow. Should I hold the bone graft procedure until he is 20 years old? What is the best thing for us to do? ... Visitor from CA     (answer)

  • Daughter's partially repaired cleft lip and palate: My daughter has major dental work she needs taken care of. Her pediatric dentist moved and now we are in major need of a new one. Her plastic surgeon told us about the only thing we could do is take her to the emergency room. She's already been traumatized by the 13 operations she has already had. The doctors say they are done for right now until she is about 10-12 years old. Her current age is 4. Do you know of any available dentist in our area or do you agree with her plastic surgeon, to go to the hospital until we can find a dentist? ... Visitor from IN     (answer)

  • Dentures for Cleft Palate? I'm a 58 year old male who was born with a cleft palate and lip. My guestion is would I be able to wear a full upper and lower denture as I only have 14 teeth left? I did wear a top partial denture for many years. But now my teeth are just about beyond repair. And my dentist said they might have to be pulled before long. But he was not sure if I could wear a top denture or not. He is doing his best to save what left of my upper teeth. But everyone in my family had poor teeth and all wear dentures. I was able to keep my teeth longer than they did. But I now I think my time has run out. ... Visitor from OH     (answer)

  • My daughter is 15 months old and was born with a healed cleft lip. Her palate is completely intact, but on her right upper gum line there is a small piece of her gum that seems to be missing (it is where her right upper incisor should be) I have heard that children who suffer from cleft lips sometimes have missing teeth. My daughter has gotten her bottom four teeth, her two upper front teeth, her left incisor, and two back molars (one on the top and one on the bottom) but her right incisor still has not emerged. Should I have reason to be concerned? Also my daughter's lower right gum line seems to be swollen. It has been swollen and pinkish white in color for about a week and a half. She is always biting on a finger on that side and frequently cries out in pain, I have tried using baby anbesol but it doesn't seem to even temporarily relieve the pain. Please help! Should I make an appointment as soon as possible?     (answer)

  • I was born with a "minor" cleft palate. Single side, scar tissue to the middle of the roof of my mouth. As a result I had a "peg" tooth capped at a young age and extensive orthodontics through my preteens to teens. I am now 31 years old, my teeth have once again shifted. Crowding in the scar tissue area (no bone for teeth to butt up against, is my understanding.) My dentist, after many appointments of saying he's working on a plan, referred me to another dentist who in turn referred me to an Orthodontist. Initially I was not willing to undergo Orthodontics again after so much money and time in my teens. However, I now have a cross bite damaging the surface of my teeth. The orthodontist indicated it would take 48 months to shift everything back with full braces/retainers/etc. My question is, now that I am 31 years old, I don't believe I am growing any more. It seems to me it could be done in a less amount of time (and money) considering he's not contending with a developing mouth. I'm looking for any info. I'm seriously thinking just leave it and deal with things as they "break". I realize any answer is subjective considering you can't see me but I am very interested in any comments. Regardless, I attended the consultation and paid to have the impressions done. If I receive serious inquiries, I'd be happy to put you in touch with the dentist, referred dentist or the orthodontist. ...Michael in MI     (answer)

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