A few days ago, it was time for the twins’ dental cleaning, and I wasn’t looking forward to it. Previously, dental visits were something of a torture-fest, as I’d be required to hold one of the girls on my lap and restrain her arms and legs, and on occasion, help the hygienist pry her mouth open – while her twin looked on horrified from her seat in the double stroller.
After every appointment, I’d switch dentists, hoping that the next one billed as being “child-friendly”, would somehow live up to that promise. All to no avail.
At Zanna’s last checkup, the dentist – let’s call her Dr. Quack – spotted the cavity between the top front teeth readily enough, but the two teeth that had discolorations that appeared to be like cuts in the tooth were deemed to be “calcium deficiency” and “nothing to worry about”. As for the cavity, we were told to just “brush it alot” because Zanna was “too young” for it to be filled. We’d “just have to wait” until that tooth came out on it’s own.
And again, with the restraining, so I never took them back there.
We’re very careful to brush their teeth and floss everyday, but we still need the 6 month checkup to be done, so I switched dentists again.
And now, we have a brand shiny new dentist, Dr. G.
He compentently corrected all the damage that Dr. Quack did to my husband’s and my teeth, so even though there was nothing about his practice that flaunted itself as “child-friendly”, I decided to bring the twins in to see him, anyway.
I am So. Glad. I. Did!
I’m still blown away, a couple of days later, by how sweet everyone was to my girls. Instruments were demonstrated to the girls in a fun way, they were allowed to hold the saliva-sucker-thing and a mirror, and the hygienist and her assistant sang songs and told stories to the girls, and I was not asked to restrain the girls even once! Not even when Halle fussed and refused to get her teeth polished, I was told firmly to keep to my seat in the corner, and watched as they cajoled and coaxed her gently into voluntarily letting them polish some of her teeth.
Zanna didn’t fuss so much, which was a good thing, as her teeth are more tightly packed than Halle’s, and needed more of a cleaning.
Then Dr. G examined each girl’s teeth: Halle had no cavities! Yay!
But Zanna, in addition to the one cavity in the front having spread to the next tooth over, turned out to have one of those “calcium deficiencies” actually be another cavity!
When I told Dr. G what Dr. Quack had said, he looked very angry and a bit sickened. Yeah, that’s kind of how I felt, too.
So I brought Zanna back the next day to have her 3 cavities filled. Since she had had such a fun time the previous day, she was eagerly looking forward to this!
Luckily enough, due to her enthusiasm and the placement of the cavities, we were able to avoid the anaesthetic shot, and she was a happy little camper as the dentist and assistant turned the session into playtime as the cavities got filled. Afterwards, she was treated to a tour of the office by Dr. G, and invited to chat with him as he did some paperwork, while I was paying the bill.
As we went out the door, Zanna told me that she wanted to come back and do it again!
While I’m happy that traumatic dental visits are now a thing of the past, I hope we won’t be seeing Dr. G and his amazing staff for anything other than cleaning!