Eight Year-Old Dies After Developing Extreme Phobia Of Dentist

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  1. [​IMG]Tragic: Sophie Waller, eight, died after developing such an extreme fear of dentists that she refused to eat

    A schoolgirl wasted away and died after developing such a fear of dentists that she would not even open her mouth to eat.
    Eight-year-old Sophie Waller's phobia was so bad that she had to go to hospital just to have a tooth removed.

    Doctors decided to remove all her milk teeth in one go, to avoid a repeat of the procedure, but afterwards she still would not open her mouth and had to be fed through a tube.

    When she left the Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro doctors were satisfied Sophie was recovering, but her mother says she would not eat anything at home except watermelon.

    Her weight plummeted and health worsened until she was found dead in her bed by her mother a month later.

    Yesterday, more than two years after her death from acute kidney failure in December 2005, Sophie's parents Janet Waller, 33, and Richard, 35, demanded to know why an inquest has still not been held into the tragedy.

    Mrs Waller said: "When she came out of hospital she was obviously losing weight and was very weak.
    "Her eyes became sunken - she couldn't walk and we had to carry her.

    "Then one day I went to her room and found her cold. We called an ambulance but she was already dead.
    "I am really angry that there has been no inquest. Questions need answering about my daughter's death."

    Mrs Waller, a nursery teacher from St Dennis, Cornwall, added: "We have not been able to move on in the grieving process.
    "The whole family has had problems coping with what happened and we want the inquest so we can have some closure and move on.

    "We have tried calling the coroner's office but we don't get any answers - we have asked the police and they can't help us either.
    "I don't want this to happen to other families, I want to get some answers."
    A spokesman for Cornwall coroner Dr Emma Carlyon said: "It is our intention to hold the inquest into the death at the earliest opportunity."
    A spokesman for the Royal Cornwall Hospital said: "This is a very sad case and our sympathies are with the family.
    "We are unable to comment ahead of an inquest but we will be offering all our assistance to the coroner

  2. Didn't the family notice the girl had not eaten? How would the hospital know the girl wasn't eating at home? Unless she was under hospital supervision and not at home, it was the parents' responsibility to take her to the dr. if she wasn't eating and was getting weaker.
  3. omg!! :crybaby:

    how scary. What can one do? I remeber on the today show, they were showing this little boy that was SO scared to talk in public. he had this fear of speaking in public. yet when he was home, he was very talkative and playful.

    makes you wonder what is behind this disorder!

  4. Its a tragedy but I completly agree with Hautemama. A child is a parents responsability.
    So sad she had to die.
  5. I agree that the parents should have taken her back to the hospital but the hospital shouldn't have released her in the first place, it said she was too weak to walk out of the hospital and her eyes were sunken in the day she left the hospital. She was in no way healthy enough to be discharged to her parents care.
  6. Sounds like an inquest would be a good idea,with the parents being the main focus.I can't imagine any hospital doing something that drastic without the parents giving the o.k.and signing off on it.There's more to this than meets the eye.

    It's a shame this child had to suffer and die at the hands of these people.
  7. For a child that young it is something they would definitely do, its much less traumatic to do one procedure then multiple on a child that age, and mouth wounds heal very quickly. I just had a biopsy in my mouth and it was completely healed in 4 days. I can't even feel where it was anymore.

    Think about having your wisdom teeth, would you rather have them taken out one at a time or all at once? I personally would never opt to have them taken out one at a time.

    An inquest should definitely be done on BOTH the parents and the hospital, I really don't' think that child should have been discharged, hospitals tend to discharge people early to save money. In my experience in the hospital with that type of procedure you wouldn't be discharged until you could walk on your own. The parents should have insisted on the hospital keeping her, or bring her back when they realized she wasn't eating. It was the fault of both, but the hospital should have known better!
  8. This is a terrible, terrible tragedy. I really don't understand what happened or how in the h#ll this happened. The girl was home for an entire month and, according to her own mother, only ate watermelon. For a month. Leaving aside the fact that she allowed her child be discharged when she was still visibly unwell and didn't take her to another doctor if the hospital did in fact discharge her too early, the mother never took her daughter back when she still refused to eat and got more sick? And it was a surprise to the mother when her daughter's little body couldn't handle it anymore? The hospital may have also be negligent in allowing her to go home early (if that is the case) and perhaps in not treating the underlying phobia/disorder/mental illness that caused this child not to eat, but that in no way negates the mother's duty to care for her child.
  9. WOW. Why haven't the parents been arrested?? It was their responsibility to take her to the hospital and get her help, not just allow her to not eat and waste away until she finally died. This is outrageous, what terrible parents!
  10. The parents are responsible, IMO. How stupid do you have to be to allow your child to eat only watermelon for a month?
  11. ^^Agreed- she went way beyond being a picky eater. It's such a shame- she was a beautiful little girl.
  12. She should never have been released from hospital if she was that ill. And yes, the parents should have stepped in and tried to make her eat decent food, see a counsellor, etc, but she shouldn't have been discharged in the first place!
  13. Wait... the parents had her at home for a whole month and didn't notice her slowly starving to death?!? What do they think an inquiry will accomplish? She was in their care!
  14. I can't believe the parents! How could they let the child eat nothing but watermelon and still not take her back to the hospital. Very irresponsible!
  15. There a multiple things that are off in this story. For one, the parents are at fault here and yet THEY want an inquest? Do they not realize they are the ones who are going to be found primarily guilty.

    Yes, the hospital probably should not have released her, but hospitals do that all the time when the insurance says it won't pay anymore. That was an issue that the parents needed to take up with the insurance in order to get her more medical help. Which they should have been doing in the form of mental health, at the very least. Even if the insurance wouldn't cover that, there are ways of paying or finding the help. You find it when your child's life is in danger.

    Next, I don't quite buy the story that the child was afraid of the dentist so she just wouldn't eat. If that is totally the case, why was she still eating watermelon? I mean she was still eating. Granted, an 8 year old child is not capable of total rationalization, but still, it doesn't make sense.