Tuesday, January 5, 2010

This is the way we brush our teeth, brush our teeth...

DD2 (Dear Daughter Age 2) had her first dentist visit today.

Before I continue, let me just say that I tried to have her see a dentist in Oregon, but the office in town did not see children until they are 3 years old. When we moved back to Southern California I decided to see if a local pediatric dentist would see her. DD2 has chips on her two front teeth due to falling at around 11 months when she was learning to toddle. I noticed a few months ago that there was some browning behind them. I tried to focus our teeth brushing in that area, so I did not think it was that bad. In addition, I already had a bad feeling about the dentist since they disliked that I was still breastfeeding when I made the appointment.

When we arrived at the office, which was hard to find even with their printed out directions, the receptionist used the high pitch baby talk voice with me. I laughed under my breath due to the rediculous nature of being spoken to that way, especially when I was annoyed with their choice of location. When we were called back, a nice hygenist lead us back. She took a picture of DD2 for their records, let DD2 pick out a toothbrush, and a toothbrush cover. She asked DD2 to sit in the chair. So far, so good. Once she put the bib around her neck, DD2 started crying. I got to lay underneath DD2 while the woman looked at her teeth, cleaned them, and rubbed flouride on them. The hygenist said she needed to take xrays of the 2 front teeth since they were decaying. I held DD2 with the cover over both of us and the woman stuck something in DD2's mouth and took the xray. It popped up on the screen and a dentist came in and quickly looked at it. We went back to the chair and waited for the dentist to come look at DD2's teeth. We again had to lay down and DD2 was fed up with all the items being stuck in her mouth. I guess the dentist was able to get a good enough look. He said that they would have to make another appointment to clean out the teeth and cap them. That if they did not do this then there was a chance they could get infected and need to be pulled out. He said the decay was in the living part deep in the teeth. The dentist also said they would have to sedate her to do the procedure and she could not eat or drink for 6 hours prior. I immediately thought, he can not mean breastfeeding, so I asked. No breastfeeding either, DD2 could throw up and get it in her lungs which could be fatal. Then we had to weigh DD2 to see how much sedative my little one could handle.

When we were done DD2 picked out a toy and we walked to the front counter. The receptionist went over the billing and information for the procedure. In addition to the costly procedure and sedative, they want to use a restraining device on DD2 and I cannot even be in the room with her. I got seriously pissed. "ARE YOU KIDDING ME?" I wanted to scream at the woman. My tone changed completely with her and I was ready to go. She asked me if they had done anything wrong. I told her it was not her, it was that I had never drugged my child nor restrained her. I then asked her if this is what other dentists would do? She said that this was a pediatric dentist office and this is what they do. I told her that it seemed like it would be traumatizing to DD2. She said the sedative was to help it not be traumatizing. I let her know I understood what they wanted to do with DD2, sedate, restrain, scrape, and cap. I walked to the door and said goodbye.

I immediately wanted to get a second opinion when hitting the fresh air of Southern California. I came home talked to DH (Dear Husband), he wanted me to wait until he was able to be there with us. I also went to my twitter support, who also said to get a second opinion.

I called the insurance company, so, now all I have to do is find another pediatric dentist and see what they say.

In addition, to all of the trauma DD2 may be facing, I feel so guilty. I know I should not hold myself fully responsible for her teeth. But I am responsible and my heart aches out of an overwhelming guilt I cannot seem to shake.

1 comment:

  1. Wow!! Don't beat yourself up too much about it. It is better late then never and it could have gotten worst. You are a great mother for wanting a second opinion because sometimes doctors/ dentist take the easy way out and use methods that cover up the problem instead of solving it. I have a one year old who loves to brush her teeth but because she has great teeth I don't brush them as much as I should. Your situation just gave me a WAKE- UP call. Thank you for sharing!!