Wednesday, September 24

motherbumper on modern dentistry

Back in July, a mere 12 hours before I was leaving on a jet plane for that big ol' party in San Francisco, my daughter did what any child would do in the same situation (that situation being she's staying home while mommy is going out to have fun), she made sure that she did something worthy of an emergency room visit.

She took a swan dive off her bed and landed on her front teeth. Well actually, on her left front tooth. She smashed that puppy into next week, got up off of the floor, wailed like a mo'fo (rightfully so), and started bleeding like she was Carrie at the prom. I almost fainted and her Dad had to play the good cop.

Good lord, who knew a child could produce so much blood from one small tooth mangling.

After I recovered (I'm so selfish) we assessed the situation and due to the nauseatingly angled tooth dangling in her mouth, decided we needed professional help. Now if that's not a loaded statement, I don't know what is. But moving right along....

We spent the next four hours in the ER because her docs office had just closed approximately 20 seconds before the accident, thus forcing us to go with the masses. Of course a seasoned parent would have said suck it up kid and here is some ice for your boo-boo but I'm neither seasoned, nor should I have the parent description on my resume most days.

And guess what? They told us there was nothing they could do and that we should take her to a dentist in the next 24 hours. So I assigned that task to SB and we went back home to grab some sleep before I left for SF.

The next day, I tore around the apartment trying to get ready to leave. But I just couldn't leave without saying good bye to my Gigi, so I snuck in to give her a kiss. There she lay, looking like a cross between Angelina Jolie and a duck. Her lips were so swollen. I know there are some Hollywood ladies that would give their husbands left nut for that kind of pout but that is neither here nor there.

ARGH - how am I to leave my baby when she looks like a Jolie-duck hybrid? But I did (remember: I'm selfish and cheap and the tickets were non-refundable).

I remember sitting on the plane trying NOT to think about her, and getting to SF and trying NOT to think about her, and spending the whole weekend trying NOT to think about her. Each time anyone asked me "how are you?" I'd babble incessantly about the damn tooth. I'm sure it was annoying for many because I think they wanted to discuss my obsession with Chuck Norris and perhaps plan an intervention.

Anyhow, enough about me - Gigi saw a dentist who pronounced it okay and said to keep an eye on it for changes, and do the ol' wait & see.

Fast forward to last week. Gigi and I had just come home from a playdate when something caught my eye. I asked to look in her mouth and sure enough, that tooth had turn grey - like yucky dishwater grey. Oh gawd, it's happening... my baby is going to lose her tooth. She's gonna go years without a front tooth.

I kept picturing this:

But then I thought, perhaps we can work with this gap toothiness. Maybe I could get her one of these:

Or why stop there, why not get her this:

With the prospect of shopping for jewels on the horizon, I took Gigi to the dentist and tried not to think about any procedures they may have to perform in order to get us to the Glitter Tooth stage. I also tried not to think about how much she is going to hate the dentist after this experience. Because I hate dentists as much as I hate clowns so nothing I would say on the topic was going to help.

So off to the dentist we went. I won't bore you with the details but I cannot tell you how relieved I was that they decided the tooth can stay - even though it's as grey as all get go. It was debatable but examinations and x-rays revealed that nothing was rotting and the lack of an abscess meant that no infection was lurking under the surface.

I was so freakin' relieved. Apparently I picked the right freakin' dentist because he participated in a study at Sick Kids that proved that tooth removal in this type of situation may be too radical a procedure. Back in the day, a tooth like Gigi's would be removed as a precaution but he said the trauma inflicted on a young kid outweigh the chances of infection and tooth rot.

OH MY GAWD I PICKED THE RIGHT DENTIST. Score one for motherbumper's mothering mad skillz.

Though I must admit, I'm disappointed that we won't be going grill shopping. Damn. I wanted to get us mother and daughter matching grills along with some fancy ol' brass knuckles.

that's right kid, floss and keep 'em pearls nice and grey


LazyCrazyMama said...

ER visits are so fun! Has anyone ever gotten out of an ER within 4 hours? Even in a small town!
Soooo glad you found a great dentist! :)

SciFi Dad said...

Modern medicine deciding NOT to do something? But that means they don't get paid as much! This throws my understanding of the entire medical community into complete disarray. Thanks, MB.

Heather said...

My son did a face-plant on the cement when he was 15 months old and landed on his mouth. One of his teeth looked either chipped or pushed in, so I called the dentist. We had to go in for emergency x-rays right then. Let me just say holding a screaming 15-month-old with film in his mouth is just not fun.

Kyla said...

Glad she gets to keep her teeth, but I'm sure she is mourning that diamond grill about now. Diamonds are a grill's best friend, you know. ;)

Mayberry said...

I got the same advice re stitches in my kid's skull. Huge relief!

Gigi will probably be one of the first kids to lose a front tooth in kindergarten -- total bragging rights!

for a different kind of girl said...

Glad she got to keep her tooth, but how bad ass would she be in preschool with diamond teeth!? Of course, you'd run the risk of her talking about her posse, and the renewal of MTV Cribs (because hell yeah they'd want to feature a preschooler!) doing a feature. So, long story short, yeah for the Sick Kids study!

Laura said...

I'll trade ya' one grey tooth, for eight cavities and 3 baby root canals. Yes, I am here to collect my "mother of the year" award anytime.

hm...I am, however, thinking I should see your dentist for a second opinion.....

Mandy said...

Well, I for one cannot see it being grey, but maybe in real life it's visible.

She's still cute as a button and, frankly, the whole grey tooth is just a convenient way for you to blame any future grey hair on her and her escapades.

kittenpie said...

Glad to hear they can just leave it! And in just a couple of short years, she'll be replacing that tooth, anyhow. Scary, no?

Chicky Chicky Baby said...

Aw, you could have gotten a sweet grill w/ "Love" on the top teeth and "Hate" on the bottom. I guess now she'll just have to wait until she's 15 and get it tattooed on her knuckles like everyone else.

Mac and Cheese said...

Ugh! Watching her smash her tooth like that would have made me feel like all the bones in my own body were shattering into tiny pieces. What a crappy experience for you both.

Chag said...

I wonder if they make Disney Princess grills?

mamatulip said...

I do remember this story - when you mentioned it happened the day before BH it went off like a light bulb in my head. I'm so glad they were able to save her tooth.

Kat said...

Glad that she can keep her tooth. Don't worry about her looking like a freak if it ever does come out. They have partials that they can put in the space to make it look like nothing ever happened. My mom is a pediatric dental assistant and tells me these things when I have a freak out and think my kids are going to lose their teeth from some horrible fall etc.

Audrey - Mom Generations said...

I'm loving that BIG grill! That's great she can keep the tooth. I just found your blog... I have to say, I love love love it!! So glad I found it!
- Audrey

nomotherearth said...

I would freak out! I have issues about blood coming from the mouth or the ears. (No problem with blood from the nose, strangely..)

I can't get over how much Gigi looks like a young Natalie Wood.

IRISHKAT said...

My oldest fell into the corner of a table when he was three and his teeth went THROUGH his top lip - scary and we had the bleed tooth thing too. We were also told to wait and see and told it would turn grey. It is still hanging on I must say! Oh, and that last picture? GAW she is too cute for words!

daysgoby said...

Gigi and Rosey are going to be SCARY together when they play....both with the gap/grey grins.

(She SWALLOWED her tooth. IN HER SLEEP. And I didn't notice for HOURS.)

I am SO NEVER getting that Mom of the Year Award.

mothergoosemouse said...

Dude, I bet a platinum grill would cost less than crowns and veneers.

Laurels word said...

I can't believe a dentist said no! My Em chipped a tooth (I don't even know how - does that earn me a nomination for Mom of the year?) and the dentist wanted to put a crown on it. She was five. I asked if it would get infected or if it would hurt her. He said no, so I said that it stays. It's going to fall out in the next year anyway. UGH.

GiGi is so cute btw.

Lisa b said...

I am so seasoned that from the moment I read ER I was screaming (in my head, not outloud, I'm not THAT crazy) NO NO CALL THE EMERGENCY DENTAL CLINIC. NEVER GO TO ER!!!!!!

There's my words of advice for the masses, sure to come and bite me in the ass one day.
Good job picking the right dentist. I'll bet they have an emergency number you can get hold of them on the weekend. Unlike *cough, cough* ALL my DOCTORS.
Dentists are my favourite 'Drs'

man do i have issues.

Stimey said...

Oh dear. This story is EXACTLY my scariest parenting possibility. (Well, one of them.) Something about the teeth give me the heebie jeebies. I'm glad she's okay. You should teach her to make up stories about the gray tooth.

NotSoSage said...

We've got a grey-toothed one over at our our house, too. Face plant while climbing a chair when she was 18 months or so. We were relieved to find that it could stay AND (in her case) the grey colour lightened up a lot. Constant vigilance, though, around that damn tooth...and a little fear that it might target her for some teasing until it finally jumps ship at the age of five or six, but in the grand scheme of things? 'T's all good.

Gigi is darling, grey tooth and all.

katiekins said...

there are three things i hate in this world.

1. chickens
2. dentists
3. people

first i spent the morning freaking out at imaginary pecks on the back of my neck after reading thebloggess, and now i've somehow managed to stumble over here and find myself gagging on my coffee cake at the thought of latex gloves poking around in my mouth. i would rather latex gloves poke around in my vagina whilst getting my arm chewed off by a rabinous dog.

i'm going to just continue on to the next post and hopefully it wont be filled with a bunch of PEOPLE or something. otherwise i might have to start drinking at my desk, which normally id have no problem with, but chardonnay doesnt typically go well with coffee cake.

love always,

the less mentally stable katie

Domestic Extraordinaire said...

Cool dentists rock! We had one when Giggles was 3 or so, her front tooth started getting all kinds of funky. Here come to find out she had an extra front tooth that was fused with the normal one. The Extra was all crazy and chipping out. The dentist did some xrays and decided it would stay. I asked him if there was anything we could do and he said "just hope her adult tooth isn't the same way" Some how that coming from a professional helped me.

gosh that got long...oh well.

Her Bad Mother said...

Where's the picture of Jaws, from James Bond? Because that's what I pictured. She'd be an adorable Bond villain, no?

Kate said...

Alice did this to her front tooth as well when she was about Gigi's age. Cracked one of her front teeth in half while running at the beach. And ruined that cute baby smile she had before. The dentist put some molding on it, and also warned us about it turning grey. I think I cried more than she did.

Fast forward to her at 5.5 years old and the grey tooth remains. She should be probably losing it soon, but for now she continues to have a perfectly awful grey tooth for picture day.