As a foster care parent, it becomes your responsibility to give children a better life, even if for a short time. This includes nutritious food, healthcare, clean clothes and good oral and dental care. If you take your foster children to children's dental care specialists, you may even be able to discover some things about their lives you did not know before. Dental care specialists can spot some important details about these children's lives prior to their arrival on your doorstep, and it may be important for you to know these things so you can help your foster children.
There may be several children that cross your doorstep who are very hungry and underweight. However, malnutrition may not be quite as easy to spot in other children. A dental specialist for children can tell when a child is suffering from malnutrition. The child's gums will be heavily inflamed, swollen, possibly bleeding and the child's teeth may be spotty and/or discolored. Thankfully, good oral hygiene, vitamins and healthy food can turn this case of neglect around and restore a child to balanced health.
Even when a child is well-fed, he or she might be neglected in other ways. Social workers are not allowed to discuss anything with foster parents about the situation or home from whence the child came, including signs of neglect. However, a dental specialist can tell that a child has been neglected when looking at the child's teeth. There will be numerous cavities, deformities of the teeth, broken or damaged teeth (which can also indicate signs of physical abuse), and sores inside the child's mouth. All of these things the dental specialist can convey to you so that you can help treat these symptoms and help the child get healthier.
Older children, typically teens, may have been abused in other ways besides neglect and malnutrition. As such, they may take their anger out on themselves through eating disorders. Dental specialists can spot a teen with bulimia just by examining the back molars. Excessive vomiting and forcing oneself to vomit causes the teen's stomach acid to eat away at the teeth and utterly destroy them. When the foster teen you take in needs most or all of his or her molars crowned, capped or removed because stomach acid has destroyed them, then you know there are some serious psychological issues going on, and your foster teen should also see a good therapist.
For more information, contact companies like Dentistry For Children & Adolescents.