Tuesday, November 17, 2009

A story of a dentist visit and a neglectful mom

Brayden just had his first ever dentist visit.

I was incredibly anxious about the visit for many reasons. Two of Brayden's molars finally came through and looked very gray. How was the dentist going to get in his mouth? Brayden gags and then vomits with just about anything that upsets him, let alone sticking things in his mouth.

Since Brayden does not take anything by mouth and has not for a long time. His teeth take a very, very long time to finally poke out. Going to the dentist has not really been on his list of things that needed to be done...we have been dealing with bigger things.

We scheduled his appointment with the family dentist, not expecting them to be able to do much but at least have a look. Then we could possibly look into a dentist that does sedation or get in the queue for the dental clinic at Children's (which is a really long wait list, no surprise).

We rolled Brayden in the office, did not take him out the wheelchair. I told the dentist my concerns about the teeth looking gray. The dentist went in for a look...with the little mirror and the pick. I started to sweat a little, sure that Brayden was going to start gagging...his teeth were going to be a mess...just not good.

However, the dentist used the pick and scraped out the big gray clumps. It was not his teeth that were gray but something he had vomited (old stomach bile or medicine) that built up on his teeth. Brayden fussed a little but did not get too upset. Brayden's teeth were just fine.

Then came the questions, a version of it...
Dentist: "How do you brush his teeth?"
Me: "Brush his teeth? Umm we do not do that very often."
Dentist, trying to be understanding.
Me: "Just about anything makes him vomit. He already vomits enough so we do not do much to aggravate it."
Dentist: "You should start trying again."
Me: "I know, I have just been chicken (and feeling like a neglectful mom that doesn't brush her child's teeth...who does that?)".
Dentist: "You are on well water, correct? Have you been giving him fluoride?"
Me: "I have not for awhile. His system has been so volatile that we only do important medicines."
Dentist, trying to be understanding: "You should try giving his fluoride again to make his teeth stronger."
Me: "I will."

So there is my confession/neglectful mom moment for the day. We do not brush Brayden's teeth regularly. It is like a huge therapy goal to tolerate a brushing and not vomit. We will start trying again.

Brayden's teeth actual looked pretty good, no problems, despite all of the vomiting, lack of brushing and lack of fluoride.

I promise we will take better care of his teeth.


Courtney said...

don't feel bad... i hardly ever remember to brush sawyer's teeth...and i have NO good excuse!

Wherever HE Leads We'll Go said...

Same here. I have been trying really hard to remember to brush Emily's teeth, but forget more often than not. Like Brayden she has been VERY slow to get teeth. I really have no excuse for not doing it - she tends to tolerate it pretty well. Her mouth doesn't really open very wide and she likes to bite the toothbrush, but when I acutally do it, it isn't so bad. Guess that should motivate me to do it more.

By the way, this may be TMI but when I was pregnant and in the middle of morning-noon-night sickness, brusing my teeth caused me to vomit more times that I really care to remember. If I was feeling remotely good, I would rather not brush then do it and vomit. So I can understand why you would avoid brushing with Brayden.

Dentist in Los Angeles said...

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