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our cultural obsession with orthodontia - how is this different from foot binding?


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Ok, really I'm kidding. But not entirely.

 

I need help. Ds got braces Tuesday, and for some reason I did not realize that the "Turbo" something-or-other appliance that is now in his mouth would prevent him from connecting the teeth on his lower and upper jaw. Hence, no chewing. Hello! No chewing! I was not prepared to totally invent a new diet for this child, who only eats about three things anyway. I guess I have to trust that when he's hungry enough, he'll start eating....

 

Please help me with kid-friendly, non-dairy, non-citrus, high protein ideas for meals.

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I guess the difference between foot-binding and orthodontia is that foot binding is entirely for cosmetic purposes and braces are often not. Although, I will say, I am disgusted with the dental profession and how it seems that 99% of procedures are cosmetic and that dentists will push for cosmetic procedures.

 

I was a dental assistant a million years ago and I remember interviewing for jobs. One of the frequent questions I got from new and progressive offices was, "Can you sell procedures?" I did NOT get into the field to be a salesman, so I always expressed that. Anyway, it seems that dentists nowadays are really pushing for the cosmetic. And, I guess if people want that, fine by me. But it's like oral health has taken a back seat to oral beauty.

 

Rant over. Hope your son can chew soon!

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To me the foot binding is a life altering thing. The people that have it done have to continue to bind forever or go through a painful unbinding period. They never walk the same or are able to go about their tasks in the same way as someone who has unbound feet. Cosmetic Dentistry, in theory, emulates a healthy set of teeth.

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My dd had teeth that were sideways and she couldn't bite down properly, it wasn't totally a cosmetic thing.

 

As for what she ate - she made a smoothie every day (still does) of oj, strawberries, and banana and crushed ice. If you can't do the citrus thing, I would try another type of juice - have fun experimenting :) She ate apples cut into little slivers. She doesn't like pasta but I would think that would work.

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Soup

Pudding with protein powder

Jell-o

Smoothies with protein powder

Scrambled eggs

Crustless Quiche(fritata)

 

Pumpkin and Sausage Soup (huge hit here. I puree it with a hand mixer)

 

16 ounces country style sausage

1/2 cup onions, minced

1 clove garlic, minced

1 tablespoon Italian seasoning

1 cup fresh mushrooms, chopped

15 ounces pumpkin, canned

5 cups low sodium chicken broth

1/2 cup heavy cream

1/2 cup sour cream

1/2 cup water

Over medium heat brown the sausage breaking into small bits. Drain fat. Add the onion, garlic, Italian seasoning and mushrooms and saute until vegetables are cooked.

Add the canned pumpkin and the broth, stirring to mix well. Cook at a low simmer for 20-30 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in heavy cream, sour cream and water.

Servings: 8

Notes: Per 1-cup serving: 376 calories. 15 grams protein, 32 grams fat (14 saturated) and 9 grams carbohydrate (2 grams dietary fiber). Rich in Vitamin A, Thiamin and B12 and one serving has 63mg of calcium.

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Protein shakes mixed with banana or strawberries

 

You could do a mashed potato "bar" w/ melted cheese, sour cream, salsa, chili, etc.

 

Cottage cheese with pureed fruit

 

Ham and Split Pea Soup

Ingredients:

8 slices bacon

1/2 medium onion, chopped

1 cup carrot, chopped

1 pound split peas

16 ounces chicken stock

2 cups water

1 cup ham cubes

1 each bay leaf

ground pepper, to taste

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

Directions:

In a large heavy dutch oven cook the bacon over moderate heat, stirring until crisp. Transfer to paper towels to drain.

Leave rendered bacon fat in pot and cook the onion and carrots until translucent and soft.

Add remaining ingredients and bring to a simmer. Simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally for two hours. Add more water if soup is too thin, it should be thick.

Discard bay leaf and serve warm topped with crumbled bacon.

*I add everything to a crockpot after I cook the bacon, carrots and onion and cook until peas are soft. I puree with a stick mixer before serving

Servings: 12

Notes: Per 1-cup serving: 184 calories. 13 grams protein, 4 grams fat and 25 grams carbohydrate (10 grams dietary fiber). Rich in Vitamin A and Thiamin (B1).

Serving Ideas: For creamier soup stir in some sour cream. For spicier soup season with curry powder or cayenne pepper.

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First, I'm sorry.... I didn't ask the question well with that foot binding thing. But sometimes these orthodontia procedures just seem like cruel and unusual punishments. Palette expander anyone? Eew. And this just hit at a very, very bad time for me. I've been working 40+ hours / week at my "part time" job and I'm just wiped out. When I get overtired, my MO seems to be to feel like I'm a failure at everything, and then not to be able to meet my child's most basic need, food, well.... It isn't pretty.

 

I'll put away the violin now.

 

Thank you so much for the suggestions.

 

Here are a few questions:

 

Jello. What exactly is it? I mean really. I've never purchased it in my life. Isn't it just sugar and water and ick?

 

How does one make mashed potatoes? I thought they had to have a lotta butter and milk to make them good? My neighbor, whose child is also suffering the effects of unnatural appliances, swears that instant mashed potatoes are good. I'm skeptical. What say you?

 

I had some other questions but now I can't remember them. We are going back to the ortho's office this morning, because they think something must be wrong.... (I wanted to say, "Well, yes, something is wrong! Hello!")

 

Again thanks. Sorry I freaked.

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Jello. What exactly is it? I mean really. I've never purchased it in my life. Isn't it just sugar and water and ick?

 

How does one make mashed potatoes? I thought they had to have a lotta butter and milk to make them good? My neighbor, whose child is also suffering the effects of unnatural appliances, swears that instant mashed potatoes are good. I'm skeptical. What say you?

 

Jello...yup, pretty much sugar and water. But when you're desperate for something to fill your tummy, it works. They do make a sugar free version.

 

Mashed potatoes are, of course, better if they are "real." And yes, lots of butter and cream make them taste better. (There's really no big trick to them...peel, boil, add butter and cream and mash.) But, some of the flavored box things aren't too bad and would make a nice change from just plain potatoes.

 

I feel for your child!

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You can use vegan smart balance instead of "butter", it's a doable substitute, and while milk will make them creamier- water and or broth will do just fine for the liquid part in mashed taters. :D

I realize soy milk is expensive, and some avoid soy- but for now it may be worth the investment so your dc can have *something* to eat- I'd use plain soy milk in recipes, and vanilla to make smoothies.

Creamed corn should be edible at this time, oatmeal (with vegan "butter" if you'd like), mashed sweet potatoes is great with brown sugar and a tad of cinnamon, a broccoli (or any other vegetable you can mush or mash that would go well with this) "casserole" with vegan butter and soft cornbread (put a can of creamed corn in the mix) and maybe nutritional yeast flakes if you have some (you can buy it at a health food store- it adds a bit of *cheesey* flavor to dishes), fish is a softer meat for protein, HTH

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Orthodontia ruined my mouth. Oddly enough I get compliments on my smile, but the TMJ is awful and I chew on the sides of my lower right molars - which doesn't work well for mastication. I end up favoring the left side for chewing.

Not all orthodontists are as bad as mine - but my kid will never see one!

No offense to any dentists or orthos here - but with all the mercury, flouride, and xrays (think thyroid gland that they seldom protect while xraying our kids)

- I think that the profession as a whole has made alot of unhealthy individuals.

 

I do love a GOOD dentist and really appreciate them when I find one. But they are far and few between. I like the old school docs, but they're retiring out.

 

I would add rice protein to smoothies if I couldn't chew well. (Actually - I do it sometimes when the TMJ really hurts.) I like rice protein shakes.

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I need help. Ds got braces Tuesday, and for some reason I did not realize that the "Turbo" something-or-other appliance that is now in his mouth would prevent him from connecting the teeth on his lower and upper jaw.

 

My dd has a Herbst Device, which is supposed to help with severe overbites. When she first got it on, she could not chew (no contact between upper and lover molars.) However the problem resolved itself very quickly. Within a couple weeks she could chew normally.

 

As for the foot binding comparison- I get your point! Sometimes I wonder how far we Americans will go for beauty. I do think orthodontics can help the long-term health of your mouth, though (for some people.) My teeth were so crooked and crowded I would not have been able to clean them properly.

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My dd has just had a spacer put in. She is terribly crowded and has teeth coming in on top of teeth. The dentist said that it is causing problems with the way her teeth meet together and she doesn't have a normal bite which can cause all these other problems, like TMJ. After reading this post I am a little concerned about going ahead with braces. I never thought other complications could arise, or that it was purely for cosmetic reasons. However, if it were only for cosmetic reasons, I think it would be worth it (as long as there were no other complications) if only for her self esteem.

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Ok, really I'm kidding. But not entirely.

 

\

Please help me with kid-friendly, non-dairy, non-citrus, high protein ideas for meals.

 

What a jolt to both of you. I'd be pretty frustrated with the ortho who didn't forewarn either of you about this. OTOH, that makes me hope that the problem is relatively temporary...maybe....please?

 

Thoughts that come to mind, though I have no idea how practical they will really be:

 

scrambled eggs

most soups, esp. if pureed (potato/leek comes to mind)

canned fruit

small pasta with pureed sauces

meatloaf (???)

grits (MmmHmmm! Southern roots coming thru!)

tofu

smoothies made with tofu and soy/rice/almond milk

mashed potatoes

liverwurst -- okay, ew! But, some folks in my extended family like it.

 

 

And if that doesn't help -- here's a big hug to boot!

 

(((((Nichole))))

 

Doran

 

p.s. :D Your dilemma aside, I'm glad to see you here!

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Hmm. I was always able to chew when I had braces. Mine were for future oral health--I had them back when they were still the exception, although not as exceptional as they'd been previously. I'm still reaping the benefits. My eldest could use them but for purely cosmetic reasons. We can't afford them. My 9 yo will need them for the same reasons I had them, so this is one of the reasons I'm becoming more frugal...to save up!

 

He's not going to be able to chew for MONTHS??? Really? Gosh, I think I might have nearly starved to death. Well, smoothies, lots of blended soups, such as spit pea soup put through the blender. Can he use his tongue to break up really soft food?

 

As for foot binding--that was not just cosmetic, it severely restricted a woman's ability to walk far. It wasn't just binding, a girl's foot was broken and turned under (at least in some areas.) Her foot was deformed. But other cultures did other things we now think of as deforming, such as shaping heads, etc. That, at least, didn't involve breaking any bones or impeding travel.

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You can buy plain gelatin packets and turn all kinds of things into gelatin desserts. Jello is a brand name of premixed stuff with all kinds of junk added. But the soup thing would help alot, especially if you can puree a meat soup if you eat meat--dairy and soy might get kind of boring, IMO. Which is pretty funny since I'm one of those weird people who will happily eat the same thing for breakfast and lunch (different meals for each, except when I was pregnant with ds) every day for months, but not for supper. Then I need variety.

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Our kids will be getting them for teh reason that they have a TINY mouth. They will have pallette stretchers, extractions and braces. I have a couple of teeth that are somewhat crooked, and I live with it fine. I too, beleive that braces for cosmetic reasons is silly. DH and I will keep a close eye on how much stuff they do on our kids. I do wonder what would happen to these girls if they were in their home country. I might have to look into that.

 

And I DO understand the foot binding comparison.

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I was a dental assistant a million years ago and I remember interviewing for jobs. One of the frequent questions I got from new and progressive offices was, "Can you sell procedures?" I did NOT get into the field to be a salesman, so I always expressed that. Anyway, it seems that dentists nowadays are really pushing for the cosmetic. And, I guess if people want that, fine by me. But it's like oral health has taken a back seat to oral beauty.

 

 

As a Brit it's hard for me to get into this conversation - no-one listens because Brits have 'bad teeth'. But what does 'bad teeth' actually mean? One of my top incisors never came in. The other teeth moved over to fill the gap. My mid-line is not central. Over the years, when the subject of teeth has come up, I've mentioned this to people and no-one has ever gone, 'Oh yes!' They've all had to have a good long look at my teeth to work out what was 'wrong'. They had never previously noticed.

 

My husband (American) had his top teeth straightened but then refused to have the bottom ones done (he though the orthodontist was a crook). His bottom teeth are, indeed, uneven. What difference has that made in his life? Well, he's happily married, is an international fund manager, and supports us just fine. All that at 5'6" (also meant to be an impediment to success) and with crooked teeth.

 

For the record, we are going to get Calvin's front teeth straightened, because they stick out and rest naturally outside his mouth. That's kind of my criterion: if the teeth don't do what teeth are meant to do then fix them. Otherwise..... well, I didn't get my bumpy nose fixed either, and I can't see the difference between that and paying for perfect teeth.

 

Rant over

 

Laura

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Have you gotten a second opinion about the braces?

 

We had an orthodontist tell us that dd11 needed braces asap, we needed to start it before she loses all her baby teeth, and it would take 42 months and cost $6400. I wasn't at the appt, but dh said the ortho acted like it was very necessary and urgent.

 

I took her to a different ortho for a 2nd opinion. He looked at dd's mouth and said he wouldn't recommend doing anything now, but wait until she loses all her baby teeth. BTW she has "moderate" overcrowding and a "moderate" overbite. I told him that dd is happy with her smile and does not want braces, and asked whether she would have problems later if she doesn't get braces. He said that as a dentist, he is all about the science, and so far, science has not proven that braces serve any purpose other than cosmetic. Wow, I was shocked that an orthodontist would tell me that. He said that a lot of people will tell us something different, but science doesn't back it up. By the way, he is a young guy, so this is not a case of an older guy being resistant to new methods.

 

And I wonder about doing all this stuff early rather than waiting to see how the teeth turn out as a child grows. Ortho #1 told dh that growth will not do anything to correct dd's overcrowding, while ortho #2 said that growth sometimes does relieve overcrowding.

 

On the food front, I personally think mashed potato flakes are not fit to feed to a dog. Mashed potatoes don't have to have a lot of butter, etc. to taste good. One of my nephews is severely allergic to anything dairy, and my sister will use broth or a little potato water (the water the potatoes were boiled in) to make his mashed potatoes creamy.

 

To make jello interesting and a little bit nutritious, you could add pureed bananas, strawberries, or other fruit to it.

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My hubby has straight enough teeth but the tops ones hit the bottom ones and have worn them into a very sharp edge. Those bottom ones will not last as long as most of the enamel on the front top is gone. He should have had orthodontia for his bite, not cosmetics (although they are looking rattier now).

 

Front teeth protruding carry a message of hicks from the sticks here in the States.

 

These two things I will fix, if kiddo doesn't get my naturally very straight teeth. If you hubbies crooked lower teeth don't rub and wear things...I'm with you. A little uneven, that's character.

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How does one make mashed potatoes? I thought they had to have a lotta butter and milk to make them good? My neighbor, whose child is also suffering the effects of unnatural appliances, swears that instant mashed potatoes are good. I'm skeptical. What say you?

 

 

As someone who is thrilled with the results of orthodontia on myself (I had the ugliest teeth and it really helped my confidence) I have to say that I appreciate it.

 

about the mashed potatoes ...

Since I have a milk-allergic child and a hubby who gets grossed out by butter, we have a different way of making mashed potatoes. We cook the potatoes in chicken stock, drain the broth but save it. Then, we mash the taters and add some of the broth back in to the desired consistency. We also add some Earth Balance spread into the potatoes for flavor. If your stock in concentrated, it makes a tasty alternative.

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