Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Mister Tooth Decay

Pierce has been going to the dentist since he was 2 years old.  So for 2 years now we've gone every 6 months.  We started early because Pierce had severe acid reflux the first 3 years of his life.  He had numerous appointments with specialists, tests, and medicines.  It was a long road, but he is mostly past all that, and has been free from medicines for over a year now. 

Anyhow, the first four times Pierce went to the dentist, he wouldn't allow them to do anything other than peek at his teeth and count them. 

This time, he did allow the cleaning of teeth, but he was very nervous and jittery the whole time.  He also wouldn't sit for the x-rays, so they didn't happen.
They gave him some cool shades to wear so the light wouldn't be in his eyes.
He looked so funny I had to sneak a picture:

Unfortunately, Pierce did have one cavity.  We are on well water, so this isn't too surprising (the twins are on fluoride drops, but for some reason they weren't prescribed for Pierce).  The cavity is behind one of his front teeth.  The dentist said that because it's a baby tooth, it doesn't have to be filled - it's optional.  Based on his jitteriness at the dentist, I decided to wait and see on the tooth.  The dentist said to limit sugary foods, which we do anyhow, but I'm going to make an effort to start brushing his teeth after breakfast every morning, since he loves his waffles.  In another 6 months, we'll either see that the cavity hasn't gotten any worse, and maybe it won't need filling.  Or, if it has, perhaps Pierce will be a little more capable of sitting still for more than two seconds.

Got any good tips for youngsters with dentist anxiety? 

9 comments:

Home In The Hollow said...

Poor Pierce. Unfortunately, so many adults have dentist fear & avoidance rather than lets see what he/she could find once they're in there...kind of like exploring. If I hear of something I'll pass it on, Baby Girl....:)JP

Steve Surratt said...

Well I've always used the first context of operant conditioning myself; positive reinforcement. I would remind them of the reward they would get if they did well. Also, at times, even if they did not do so well they received a reward, sort of a noncontingent reinforcment for their troubles. They gradually paired going to the dentist with a positive reward no matter what happened. Yep, they are my little lab rats! :-)

texwisgirl said...

My first dentist visit at age 5 resulted in 8 cavities being discovered. Had to go back 2 days in a row to get 4 filled each day. At least you're easing Pierce in a bit at a time.

I do have to say, though, that my adult teeth have been fantastic and I think I only had 2 cavities since that first episode(s). :)

Tiggeriffic said...

I bought one of those vibrating brushes for Ben..He loves it~! I think it cleans his teeth better than a regular toothbrush.. While he is taking a bath I have him brush his teeth. He brushes longer while he's in the bathtub. I also have him (when he is with me) brush twice a day.. Ben goes to the dentist every 6 months and so far he is cooperative... I think brushing is the secret...
ta ta for now from Iowa

Sonya Heilmann said...

We have a couple kids' books about going to the dentist (as well as a couple about going to the doctor). One is a Dora the Explorer book, about how she and her Mama get there, then what happens when they call her back to the exam room. It helps ease Livie's anxiety about going to the dentist.

http://www.amazon.com/Show-Me-Your-Smile-Explorer/dp/0689871694

Maybe reading a kids' book about going to the dentist will help?

Livie's been going to the dentist every six months since she was 1-year-old, and she still gets a bit anxious. But reading her two books about the dentist (the Dora one and the other one) every night for a week or two before her appointment really helps a lot. She's a little nervous as we head to the dentist's office, but she cooperates and "acts brave."

Chatty Crone said...

Sounds like he has had a lot - how does a child get acid reflux. Hope he is feeling better real soon. sandie

Chatty Crone said...

Gosh I hope he feels better - how did he get acid reflux at his young age? sandie

Myya said...

He looks adorable in those shades. No advice from me, my girls just started going last year. So far so good though... wheew!

Anonymous said...

cute