Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Brown Spots Appearing on my Toddler's Teeth?

A photo showing the multi-faceted situation of decay.
Tight labial maxillary frenulum defect shows intrauterine exposure to
malnourishment, toxins, maternal illness or genetic trait inheritance.
Brown lines show halogen compound exposure, most likely fluoride.
Resulting decalc and opportunistic decay suggest dioxins in the milk and damaged gut.

I'm putting this together after receiving several concerned emails from parents who are dealing with the issue of brown spots and front caries or even enamel hypoplasia in their young children. 

It tends to show up in the toddler years, sometimes right after the first birthday. The parent might notice a jagged line or yellowed indent that seems to spread rapidly on its own.

It's commonly mistaken for bottle rot and some dentists even wrongly claim it's caused by nursing, especially night nursing. (On the contrary, human milk contains anti-bacterial properties that can slow down the rate of decay: http://www.kellymom.com/bf/older-baby/tooth-decay.html). 

In researching, what I've found is that this "decay" (or in it's early stages, demineralization or exposed teeth, known as hypoplasia of enamel) is actually a defect. It can be influenced by several things. One cause could be exposure to toxins around the 5th week. One scenario is that the mother is exposed to too much fluoride. This can cause fluorosis. Another theory is that the mother experiences slight nutritional deficiency during pregnancy, causing her body to breakdown calcium in her bones. Lead is stored in our bones and absorbed through the same receptors as calcium, so in theory the baby is then exposed to lead. Other factors include illness early in pregnancy, exposure to antibiotics or antidepressants and genetic conditions.

Anyways, this impacts the baby's development, and so the teeth don't have enough enamel. Sometimes it's so bad that they have NO enamel. I found the biggest collection of testimonies and threads asking for help on the mothering forums. (http://www.mothering.com/community/search.php?search=demineralization)

When the child is later exposed to fluoride through formula, food and drink, that seems to make it worse. Early introduction of processed or unprepared grains might decrease absorption of minerals in addition to damaging the gut and teeth. One theory is that grains should not be introduced until the grinding teeth have erupted, typically around 9 months to a year.

Ideas on nourishing and healing the teeth:

~Remove fluoride and lead immediately. And not just from your water; they are present in more things than you realize. Look at all foods and beverages, fertilizers, pesticides, soil around the home, sand in the playbox, toys, etc.

~Research supplementation of calcium, magnesium and vitamin D. Choose a high-quality supplement if you cannot get enough from nourishing foods such as bone broths and epsom salts.

~Consider using Pascalite/bentonite clay (food-grade) to help with remineralization. It can be consumed or mixed with filtered water and rubbed onto the teeth.

~Although dentists often claim this particular form of decalcification or hypoplasia is caused by not brushing enough, if the enamel is already compromised, routine, hard brushing might speed up the rate of deterioration. Consider gently wiping with a special dental wipe instead. (Example)
~If the deterioration is particularly aggressive and widespread, and if other symptoms exist on the body such as abnormal skin tags or follicle openings, consider having the kidneys and ears checked by a specialist, as all of these body parts were developing in the womb at the same time. In rare cases, enamel hypoplasia presents as a symptom alongside kidney malformation. Remember that people with decreased kidney function have increased health risks from fluoride exposure. (Article)

What makes some children more susceptible to all of this? How come some children have pristine diets, but develop this? Meanwhile other children can guzzle juice and eat junk, yet they have big, beautiful teeth? Enamel issues seem to be a piece of the puzzle in MTHFR, a genetic polymorphism that impacts roughly half the population. It's a genetic difference that can lead to nutrient deficiencies and present with midline defects such as tongue-tie (ankyloglossia), sacral dimples and food sensitivities. In particular, there seems to be an imbalance in the gut flora. So for some children with this polymorphism, grains and dairy might be harmful and worsen this situation (clearly, since the gut is inflamed and open).

In that case, removing processed foods, grains and dairy from the diet might be the fastest way to healing. (Visit http://www.gapsdiet.com/ for ideas). Incidentally, most grains and processed foods are fortified with Folic acid. Those with MTHFR polymorphism might not be able to use of this synthetic form of B9.

If you suspect MTHFR issues, read this:

and this:

Good luck! Remember that you are not alone! Even the CDC and FDA have shared concerns about over-fluoridation and the fluorosis epidemic:

Mainstream article on it: 

Alternative article on it: 

Check out these threads on MDC for more info:

This author provides step-by-step instructions on ways to build a nourishing diet, which seems to have the biggest impact of all on healing teeth:

His findings and ideas are based on the WAPF/NT diet:

A great discussion on this topic:

It's important to remember that fluoride is not just in water. Other sources of fluoride include baby formula, juice, soda, cereal, tea, wine, beer, processed chicken, seafood, teflon cookware, salt, anesthetics, cigarettes, antidepressants, etc. Even if your child's immediate environment is free of fluoride, this particular form of decay may have started from various issues that occurred during pregnancy. In other words, remember that even if the offending substance has been removed, the damage was already done and needs to be healed. 

Baby formula:


A list of sources:

Most dentists will only offer to pull the teeth or cap them. You might find a supportive dentist here: http://www.holisticdental.org/

 I've seen children at the park with all their front teeth capped. This is not a rare situation, but an epidemic that has not been addressed accurately, leading many parents to choose dental work on milk teeth. I hope that the above ideas and links are helpful to the many parents looking for information. 

© Guggie Daly 2011


  1. OMG! I've never heard of anyone else knowing about this! My daughter has soft enamel, and her teeth are pitted and discolored. It just chips away. :( We get looks from people, and now that she is in school, she gets teased. so far, it is not showing in any of her adult teeth, and I haven't been able to find what kind of chance there is of it persisting.

    Thankfully, my second child doesn't have it. It remains to be seen with my 3rd.

  2. My daughter's teeth look just like the photo on this page. We're going to see a pedi dentist on Monday. I specifically asked my pediatrician if it's Flourosis and she said "no, it's decay." She then told me that the dentist will want to paint flouride on her teeth! I'm not going to allow that.

    We currently do not use any toothpaste when we brush, just bottled water (since our water supply contains flouride. :( )

    Also, how can I get rid of the brown spots?

  3. Wow, crazy! I hope you can find a more educated dentist!

    Depending on the extent of the damage, the brown spots might never go away. My daughter had very faint ones and we were aggressive the moment they showed up, so hers did start to fade and heal.

  4. With my son, it only showed in his adult teeth and now at 16 we are looking at all our options to correct this. Vaneers or teeth implants are two choices...at 16 he has alot of years left to deal with this, we want to find something permanent. Two of his back teeth just fell apart making an emergency root canal necessary. Thank goodness we have a natural dentist.

    ~BTW~ Xylitol makes a big difference!

  5. Great post, thank you! My oldest son (9) has had a tooth crumble and fall apart like another commenter said. He has never had exposure to fluoride from water or toothpaste, although he may have gotten some another way? Another factor here is something called Pyroluria which is when a substance called kryptopyrole is over-produced in the body, which then strips the body of zinc and vitamin B6. Zinc is essential for healthy enamel and people with pyroluria often have dental issues exactly as you and the other commenters are describing- maybe another piece of the puzzle for some? Pyroluria is detected with an inexpensive urine test and is very easy to treat.

  6. Don't forget that fluoride is in many medications, including anti-depressants and in processed foods, pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, etc.

  7. Oh, and your mention of Pyroluria makes me go off on a tangent. Especially since Zinc and Magnesium are easily depleted in people who have methylation issues and carry a heavier toxin burden than others. And of course that means they have B-complex issues as well.

    All very interesting, thanks!

  8. Great resources! Thank you. :)

  9. Your awesome Guggie!
    Thanks for sharing your brilliance with us!

  10. Michelle MerrittApril 3, 2011 at 9:02 AM

    Hi. My poor 26 month old has flourosis. His front 4 teeth are affected. They are chipping away revealing the pulp. Two of his top molars(one on each side) also have either a cavity or the same problem of flourosis. I am just a wreck. I am pregnant with my second and am at a loss. My state (RI) adds fluoride and I just found out that my Britta water pitcher does not filter fluoride out. We use fluoride free tooth paste and just started using CLO. I can only afford to buy the capsules from the market right now, do you know if these will be OK? Right now I am popping the capsule and putting the CLO in some plain full fat yogurt or natural applesauce. We do not eat grains, sugar and I cook everything. We try our hardest to buy high quality meat, but sometimes we need to settle with out beef. We are unable to purchase raw milk right now but we are working up to that. My son does not drink anything but water and the occasional homemade almond milk. When he was 13 months I took him to the dentist because I noticed a couple pits on his front teeth (I had no idea about fluorosis at the time) and she said they were not of concern and as long as I cleaned his teeth daily, he would be fine. Well they keep getting worse. My poor baby's teeth are chipping away. At that same dentist trip I can't believe I let them wipe his teeth with flouride. I can't believe it! At that time his top two molars had not come in yet and how that they are in they have two holes in them. :( I am just at a loss here. He eats SO healthy and is breastfed (still). Do you think there is anything more I can do? Is it your opinion that I should take him back to the dentist? I am sure they will play the dumb card and say he has decay when I KNOW differently. Thank you for your time. I am just a wreck right now.

    1. One suggestion will be looking into installing a filter on countertop, instead of plastic bottles of water-NSF certified filters. You will spending money on changing the filters, but wont be more than brita filter changes. Also, not too hard brushing, as another post said-xylitol paste. I know a lot of people do not beleive in homeopathic remedies, but would be my option. I have experienced the stop of decay in my childs by using calc phos 6x, or you can contact a physician through abchomeopathy.com Good luck, it will be ok, if you or the father odes not have any decay, permanent teeth will be fine, dont loose faith.

    2. Michelle did you figure out what was gong on? What did your dentist say is going on? Same thing hapening to my daughter she is only 16 months.

  11. Please spend some time reading the threads at www.mothering.com/discussions. There are some good threads on key health puzzle pieces such as Cell Salts for deficiencies at the cellular level, MTHFR genetic issues, methylation concerns, salicylate allergies, grain-preparation, mother's diet and gut health (www.gaps.com) etc. It's a big big picture and we can only take one step at a time. <3 The mamas over on MDC have compiled masses of information and ideas. Pasca-dent is $10.

  12. We are dealing with something like this with my 18 month old son. Thank you for the information. It is definitely something I will be researching! My son has rings around two of his upper teeth. Once I got to the part where you wrote about the other 3 defects (tongue-tie, sacral dimples, and food sensitivities) I was floored because Sam has been affected by all of them! I'm so thankful to have found this and I'm hoping it will help.

  13. http://www.nmt.md/

    An NMT practitioner I know treated a little 2-year-old girl with NMT who had 2 brown spots on a couple of molars. They are gone now, after two months and 3 sessions.

    I am not an NMT practitioner but I have had NMT for other problems, as has my son and husband, and had great results.

    Good luck. Kim

  14. I just went to the dentist and asked about the brown spots on my back molars, he told me it's not decay and that I have fluorosis. He said it was from the water my mom drank even though it developed in my 20's. The treatment he suggested? Fluoride treatment trays! Ugh, because that makes sense...

    So I am determined for this not to happen to my son. But I wonder, would the little bit of tap water on his toothbrush pose much risk?

  15. It means that the mother should be taking care of herself while she's pregnant. Her condition matters most to the baby's. It's not cool to see a toddler with decayed teeth, anyway. The mother should always go to her gynecologist and ask whether both of 'em (the baby and her) are doing fine.

    Bianca Jackson

  16. Good practices for mothers to consider during early pregnancy when the teeth buds are beginning...avoid fluoride in water, food, beverages, pesticides/herbicides/fungicides, medications (antidepressants especially), etc.

    Also consider seeing a holistic dentist who can advise on adequate nutrition with a focus on building dental health. This is probably recognized as the WAPF/NT diet (Weston A Price/Nourishing Traditions). Ample amounts of good fats, vitamin D, vitamin A and protein are a wise focus, as these are typically deficient in an American diet/lifestyle.

    I doubt a generic gynecologist has anything to offer for this common situation.

  17. I must say that overall I am really impressed with this blog.It is easy to see that you are impassioned about your writing. I wish I had got your ability to write. I look forward to more updates and will be returning.

    brown spots

  18. WOW Great blog! I have MTHFR and my teeth are horrible! My kids also have not so good teeth. My son at age 3 had to have 8 teeth pulled and the rest capped because of decay. I am looked at by the dentist as a bad Mom b/c my kids teeth are bad. Then they look at mine and see the same thing. We do everything that we thought was suppost to help and it hasn't! I'm going to have to check into the things on your blog and see if any of that helps us. My 2nd child started to get these spots on her 2 front teeth when she was 2 and I wouldn't let them pull her teeth out, because that is the only option they were giving me! Wow thanks again for all the info you have provided! Really gives me a bit of hope!

  19. Guggie does this go for white spots and chipping of teeth as well? that's what my son has, white spots and one cavity that i can see. he drinks water and raw milk. does eat some grains but not too much. he is taking cell salts and fermented cod liver oil. we brush his teeth with coral toothpaste that has no glycerin or flouride and has xylitol. i don't see them getting worse, but they don't seem to be getting better. should i add magnesium and zinc supplements as well?

  20. Interesting article, its not quite the same thing but I read an article on http://CosmeticTattoo.org a few weeks ago about how sometimes some people who gat little injuries to their skin can end up with brown stains afterwards too.

    The human body really is a remarkable piece of equipment so may things can go wrong its a wonder why we have survived so long.

  21. A professional consultation is definitely needed.
    go here

  22. My niece had marked brown spots on her second teeth. I have no idea what caused it. She had an intense procedure in theatre at the dental hospital where loads of strings were put between the teeth and an abrasion procedure was carried out. Her teeth are now brilliantly white.

  23. Oh, I feel so overwhelmed! Both of my boys have signs of MTHFR and I did not know about this until now... You say about GAPS for the teeth but is this "disease" curable? Or is it for life with a lot of other problems, besides teeth?

  24. Informative post!! Really thanks for sharing. Have never seen such black teeth spots. My niece was suffering from gums problem and her gums used to bleed while brushing and eating. Took her to dentist Manhattan Beach. He really helped her by giving some medicine and a gel to apply on gums.