Thursday, September 25, 2008

First Dentist Trip

Yesterday, the girls went for their first trip to the dentist. It was quite eventful, but not because of the girls. I had a run in with the assistant who insisted that I either leave two of my kids alone in the waiting room or leave one child alone in the back for her first dental visit. What kind of a parent would do that? My children are 5 and almost 7. We were at the dentist for over 2 hours!! They could not be unsupervised for 2 hours! She told me that there were gals at the front desk and it would be fine. I told her that the gals at the front desk had a job to do and it wasn't baby sitting my children! At that the gals at the front desk looked like they were ready to applaud! lol

This would not have been such a big deal except that this is apparently a brand new rule since June when we were there with D, a new rule that patients were not informed about. I do understand some of the basis for the rule - safety because unruly kids have bumped the dentist while working on a siblings mouth and for space wise in a room with thousands of dollars of equipment. My experience in pediatrics gives me a basis to understand that. But they placed me in a position where I could not back down because my children were already with me. I was polite, but assertive and told them that I would not leave any of my children alone for any reason and that if we all couldn't go back together, then I would be leaving. They allowed it for yesterday but not again, which I understand. So when I have to take D back in December, I will have to find a babysitter for the girls. This may be no big deal to the people in the posh, yuppy dentist office, but it is for us. Likely the rules will be the same at other dental offices so it probably won't be fruitful to look elsewhere

I am not unreasonable and if I had known BEFORE the appt I could have made plans. A more professional approach would have been to send a letter to all their pediatric patients, stating the new policy. This would not have been too costly because pediatrics are the minority of their practice and they are a part of an extremely wealthy dental group. Also, the assistant could have broached it in a kinder and more professional manner instead of flat out saying no and pushing me into the defensive corner. She was young and probably too young to understand about the reactions of Mama Bears when their young are threatened! :o)

So anyway, J went first. I asked her to smile and show me her teeth and this is what she did.

Here she is studying her digital xrays on the monitor, listening to the dentist explain things to me.

Then the dentist explained what he was going to do and he was quite gentle and kind with the children, for which I was thankful. J ended up having an unusual cross bite that hopefully she will outgrow because otherwise it will require an orthodontic plate with screws! Ick! Just like her Mama, when J concentrates and is nervous she bites her lip.

Here is A. She is kind of pale because we have all been fighting bad allergies since we came back home. When we came back down the hill yesterday, the air was so brown that we could almost not make out the skyline of the city in the distance - I had to search for it! The poor kids suffer so bad and it really effects their behavior - which isn't fun for Mom or conducive to productive school work! :o)

A further irritation was that we saw the dental hygienist. Our regular hygienist is just finishing maternity leave and we wanted to wait for her, but they told us that on the first visit they did not see a hygienist, only the DDS. So we scheduled and saw a different hygienist. She turned out to be really nice and gentle and taught me a few tricks for taking care of the kids' teeth. She is an identical twin so we had a great conversation about twinhood, twin parenting etc and that was fun, ending us with an upbeat. The kids did great and I am really proud of them.

Now, does anyone know anything about dental sealants? That's what they want to do to D in December and I don't know anything about them. He has permanent molars and they want to do that to protect from cavities but I am a little leery about putting chemicals in my kids' mouths!

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