Sunday, April 03, 2011

Does My Son Have To Be Tied Up At The Dentist

This was a question asked by a parent at

May 22, 2010

I'm very worry to take my son (4) to a dentist now. When I took him to the dentist they told me they need to do root canal for his baby tooth. I asked them "My son is only 4 how you are going to do that?". They said "Don,t worry. We are going to tie up him with special chair. Yes, He is going to cry but we did a lot this." Is it usual ? I refused to do that. I can't tie up my son. Few days later, my son's pediatrician called me and said I have to do that to him. I have to? I 'm looking for a dentist who can do that without tie up.
I 'm doing wrong for my son?


1.  That's crazy!!! My son had nitrous for filling some cavities because he was afraid to sit still. If the nitrous isn't enough, they can do IV sedation. I would never let someone tie my kid to a chair.

2.  Have them put him to sleep with you in the room the whole time
Tying him up HELL NO!! sorry -mom of 4

3. I would change Pediatricians and Dentists sounds like they are in it together. I also agree with the mama who suggested having the tooth removed rather then giving a 4 year old a root canal. (I've never heard of that). There are plenty of dentists that specialize in "children ONLY".
Keep us posted.

4. i don't think you're necessarily doing the wrong thing IF your son can/will sit still during the procedure. I think sometimes it's the tying down that's more tramatic for them than the dental procedure, but the child HAS to sit still. So, if he will, then look around for a dentist who won't automatically tie him down. If you're not sure that he will, then you should explain to him what is going to happen and why so he can be prepared, maybe even demonstrate by tying him into a chair with a sheet, and then take him. If he needs the work, you have to do whatever you have to do to have the work done. By the way, is it really necessary to do a root canal - can they pull the tooth? Baby root canals are expensive and if he's going to lose his teeth soon anyway, it might be just as good to pull the tooth rather than try to save it. As the dentist if they see the adult tooth in the x-ray and an opinion on how long it will take to come down.

 5.  That's crazy!!! My son had nitrous for filling some cavities because he was afraid to sit still. If the nitrous isn't enough, they can do IV sedation. I would never let someone tie my kid to a chair.

6.  I would go to a different dentist. Why does a 4 year old need a root canal? I would rather have the tooth pulled. Root canals are not a good idea in any case, but especially not for baby teeth. There is a court case pending about a chain of dentists who restrain children like that. They did it to be able to give less anethesia and they did tons of root canals. They did this for money. It was shocking to see the hidden camera details. Seriously, go to a different dentist.

7.  Absolutely AVOID the papoose board. Here's what they DON'T tell you...a child can actually MOVE the papoose board while restrained. I know this, because at SIX months, my daughter did. I was on that like stink on s***. The dr used one without my knowledge. (ex-husband gave permisssion) When I walked in the room she was screaming and two nurses AND my ex were holding down the board saying, "Gee. Isn't she a strong one?" WEll, you can guess what happened next!! The procedure was stopped before it started and I took my precious one to a children's specialty clinic. And I don't care what they say, to this day she is terrified of anything that looks like a hospital. Don't mean to scare you, really, I don't. I just wish she didn't have to go through that and wouldn't wish it on anyone's child!! You never know how the child will react until it's actually happening, and then the damage is already done. Please see a CHILDREN's specialist, and listen to these other great moms.
Just Me!

8.   I was restrained on a papoose board when I was a young child to get stitches in my leg. I am now 43 and this was 37 years ago. I can remember every single detail and it was one of the most horrible things I have ever felt. I have 2 boys and I would explore every other option before I agreed to this. I believe this is a torture device and I hope you can come up with a better resolution for your daughter. Good luck to you!

9.   Follow your instincts. No papoose board.
Start by understanding there is no emergency here.
Cavities in a four year old who brushes his teeth with a good fluoride toothpaste progress very very slowly.
Why not wait six months to a year and then start over.
Also you might look for another pediatric dentist with a management technique that is a little better.
all the best,