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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 8  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 120-123

Unusual foreign body on the palate in childhood: An indicator of poor parental supervision

1 Department of Oral Maxillofacial Surgery, Delta State University Teaching Hospital, Oghara, Nigeria
2 Teem Clinic and Dental Centre, Ekpan-Warri, Delta State, Nigeria
3 Department of Periodontics, University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Clement Chinedu Azodo
Room 21, 2nd Floor, Prof. A.O. Ejide Dental Complex, University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Benin City 300001
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijmd.ijmd_15_18

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Foreign objects reported intraorally are more common in the floor of the mouth, cheek, and Wharton's duct and rarely in the palate and they include nuts, coin, magnet, wooden stick, pins, screws, button, batteries, or parts of toys. Monodora myristica (Gaertn) popularly called African nutmeg or calabash nutmeg as a foreign body in the palate has been reported. The objective of this report was to present two cases of impacted similar foreign objects on the palate of a 21-day-old neonate and a 13-month-old baby and to sensitize parents and caregivers on the possible causes of poor feeding in babies and the need for routine oral inspection. The babies' routine sucking was disrupted and accompanied with irritation and excessive crying with the foreign bodies on the palate. This prompted the mothers to look into the babies' mouths. The impacted substance was hard, nontender, and nonpulsatile, measuring approximately 18 mm × 10 mm located close to the midline for the neonate and on the left alveolar ridge for the second baby. After dislodging the object, it was found to be the half shell of the nut Monodora myristica (Gaertn), popularly called African nutmeg or calabash nutmeg. The nut is used as a local spice in preparing pepper soup for mothers soon after delivery. Adequate childcare with relevant supervision by parents will obviously prevent the introduction of foreign objects into their children's mouths. A routine observation of the children's mouth by parents or caregivers could lead to the discovery of foreign bodies before they are transferred to the esophagus or airway with the associated complications.

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