Friday, November 11, 2011

The dentist chair...

Bronwyn had to take a return trip to the dentist last weekend; a new pediatric dentist. Apparently, she has weak teeth or something like that. The dentist didn't come out and say that, she just came out and said she needed: 2 extractions, 5 fillings, one tooth capped, sealants and spacers. You don't have to be an expert to understand that the short version for that is "expensive". Even with extended health 'benefits' to cover part of it, dental work here is outrageously expensive. So I put two and two together and came to the conclusion that she has weak teeth. She eats no more candy than the next kid and brushes every day. Still, there we have it. This time last year I took her to our regular dentist to have a rotten tooth pulled. Not fun. I was not keen to relive that experience times 100! The dentist gave us the options: general anaesthetic or sedation. General anaesthetic seemed a good idea until we thought it through and realised we were not comfortable with putting her under. (Mark, who has never received general anaesthetic in his life, has a morbid fear of being put to sleep). We decided to convince her to have sedation and offered a very hefty bribe....a Wii player! As it turns out she actually preferred sedation (she was afraid a general would make her puke...a bigger fear it turns out, than the needle). So it was a kind of wasted bribe. Damn it, I hate when that happens.Now we're on the hook for a Wii player (hopefully, Craigslist will be fruitful).

Off to the dentist at a stupidly early time...8:00am. Soon after we arrived, we were led to a little back room containing a small couch and a table. A portable DVD player was on the table. Bronwyn was given the sedative and...a lolly(!) and we settled in to watch G-Force and wait for the 'medicine' to take effect.

I was noting things down in my journal and Bronwyn asked if she could write in it. Here is what she wrote:


'I'm at the dentist write now just about to get my teeth pulled out wich will not be fun and I got mummy and kitty with me and I am allso waching a movie right now it's called G Force. It's about Guine pigs and one mean hamster that's berly in the movie. There's allso a mole and one of the guine pigs has a mohock. There in a pet shop right now the girl one just got taken by a little hummen girl and this is what she did: put lipstick on her lips and nail polish on her nales and a crown on her head and the girl allso put a dress on her body.'

__________________________________________________ (after about half an hour of sedative)

'here I am again. I just drank some medasin at the dentast and this is how I feel. I feel like I'm flying and I'm also really tired and really drowsy and allso a bit dizzy and I see to mummys sort of and I feel sort of weard. I'm allso sitting in a room thats really really small and I can't eat eany food or drink eany water and I allso got a lollypop. the dentist might be comeing right now    wate achaly I don't think she's comeing. I am sitting on a couch right now.' (taken to the dentist chair)


'latter in the day. I just got my teeth pulled out. It  was fun!'

"Is this real life?"
Afterwards she told me how much she liked the "medicine" (a mix that includes Demerol).
"Can we get some of that medicine for home?" she asked.

Me: "No, unfortunately not, otherwise mummy would have it stockpiled in the medicine cabinet."

All in all it was a positive experience. She was very drowsy and very relaxed: high, I guess you could call it. Of course we have to go back for the rest of the work...and now she is actually looking forward to it! A keen journal-er, the recipient of an abundance of dental work, a penchant for seems the apple does not fall to far from the tree!

ETA: I should add that I was very impressed with the pediatric dentist, Dr. Anita Gartner at Tot2Teen dental office in Yaletown.  She was great with Bronwyn and explained everything that was happening. I sat right beside her as she did the dental work (something I couldn't have done a few years ago...ugh!).

Taking River to the dentist for dental work in the future is going to be a whole different challenge and I suspect we'll be back with Dr. Gartner. His last check up was okay...but he wouldn't let them clean his teeth at all:

River at the dentist: "No way!"


MarshllMNDentist said...

The key to any successful relationship is boundaries and communication and that has never been truer for anyone than it is for the pediatric dentist. While most doctors must contend with patients who don't want to be there and are not cheerful, happy little campers about the process, they at least have patients who understand the expectations upon them as a patient to not do things like bite the doctor or scream for mommy. Many kids have a fear of the dentist. All those tools that dentists use can be frightening for a kid at first glance. Understanding what those tools are and what they each do can help. Kids also need to know that the dentist is there to help. With a few fun activities and a dose of education on dentists, you may be able to alleviate your kid's fear of the dentist.

Kids Dentist Marshall MN

Wendy Flawn said...

What a brave brave little munchkin.

It is really interesting hearing of treatments in Canada. If you are talking about milk teeth the uk do as little as possible apart from proceedures that alleviate pain. They do temporary fillings of white substances and only wash out the whole unless very big. Matthew was a nightmare and if we had to have proper treatment it would have been very difficult. Bronwyn was ever so brave.

Sounds like you are doing a great job with her and her ability to work these things out. I think I could have offered all the lego in china and Matthew would still have told me where to get off!

Well done Mum and Dad.

Hope all is well with you all.


Katrina said...

Such a brave girl to handle so much dental work in one go (& so horribly early on a Saturday too). I love the journalling - witnessing the increasing fuzziness and seeing two mommys.

"Fun" is not exactly a word I'd put in the same sentence as dentist, even at my age - unless there was an accompanying "NOT".
So that's a pretty impressive sedative! (Where can I get me some?)

Yeah, that apple really didn't fall too far, did it? :-)


Victoria said...

@ Wendy...well here you pay the dentist directly, or have some kind of extended benefit plan at work. Apparently, there are things that effect the baby teeth that, if left, can effect the adult teeth and potentially lead to a lot of problems (and orthodontics)later on.

Victoria said...

@ least she's not so scared now. She won't clear the dentist waiting room with her hysterical screaming like I did as a kid!! xx